Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Bumbling, stumbling

Not talking about the on-field product, but the Stadium Operations folks:

With rain falling for hours and no start time announced until shortly before 9 p.m., hordes of fans began leaving the Stadium and heading home - some who said they had been advised that the game had been called by Yankee employees who walked the concourse holding pinstriped "How may I help you?" signs.

When a 9:20 p.m. start time was eventually announced over the public address system, a crowd on the sidewalk outside Gate 6 tried to get back into the Stadium, only to have the employees working the turnstiles promptly close the doors in their faces. Panicked fans began racing up and down the sidewalk, trying to find a way back into the ballpark, while others remained at Gate 6 either pleading or demanding to be let back in.

Jason Zillo, a Yankee spokesman, said the team has a firm no-reentry policy. He also said the NYPD and Stadium security hadn't let any fans back into the ballpark.
I understand and I totally support a firm stance on these sorts of rules, but sometimes common sense needs to intervene. When you have fans hanging around for 2 hours before being told the game was called, only to have the game start soon after, the team should have relaxed their "no readmittance" policy. It was a damp, rainy, cool night against their rivals. Couldn't someone in a position of authority have the presence of mind to say: "The team sure could use these fans IN the Stadium"? Guess not. Rules are rules.

But this is NY and these are the Yankees and this is your New World Stadium Order. Get used to being strong-armed by security, ushers and other sorts of staff.

I can't wait to fork over some hard-earned money to go get treated like crap.

UPDATE: Ross at NYYStadiumInsider has a great write-up on this mess:
As we mentioned in a previous post, the "How May I Help You" people are useless, and should not be trusted for any information of value, especially whether or not a game has been postponed.
The Yankees (in typical Yankee fashion) did not properly inform their employees, but people are also to blame for trusting the word of security guards and the "
How May I Help You" people, instead of waiting for an official announcement of the postponement. The Yankees then added to the frustration by allowing some people back in, then closing the gates for re-entry, and then opening them once again. Combine poorly trained employees, with a complete breakdown of communication, throw in some frustrated fans who had been drinking for hours, and you have the recipe for a near-riot.


Steve said...

This just doesn't make sense. The Yanks know that stuff like this make them look bad and yet they'll never really acknowledge it. The bad PR will make the product on the field look worse than it is.
Also the game should've been called. The Sox/Yanks play in the same division so its easier to reschedule postponed games vs games against teams that don't travel east on a regular basis.

tHeMARksMiTh said...

That's ridiculous. To top it all off, they lost again. Could those extra fans have cheered them on after the two big home runs to swing the momentum? It seemed a little flat in their even after Teixeira hit those home runs.

Marc said...

BUT.... I do understand. Rules are rules and until a formal announcement is made, you know the rules. No doubt people could have snuck in, passed through tickets, etc. Many were ultimately let in, but not those who stormed away. We all know the rules. Same reason we all double check our pockets for cell phones, wallets etc before we walk out on a normal day. Same with walking through security at the airport.

Not saying exceptions couldn't have been made, of which they were for many, but I can't fault the Yanks for enforcing the rules they set b/c the fans decided it would be called after a 2 hour delay.