Tuesday, August 23, 2011


So, it appears the Scranton Wilkes-Barre Yankees are destined to play their entire 2012 schedule on the road.

Realistically, I can't see any other option.  The stadium is slated for massive repairs, involving removal of the upper deck.  You can't do that kind of work and entertain fans at the same time, even if you could fit the average crowd into one tiny corner of the ballpark, and still have room left over.

The conspiracy theorists are already at work, and the scenario works like this.  The upper deck will be lopped off.  While working on the lower bowl, construction crews will discover the concrete is shot, requiring extensive, and expensive work.  It will be almost like building an entirely new stadium.  Of course, the condition of the concrete will be a surprise, and the additional money to fix it will not be there.  What comes next?  The temporary move out of town becomes permanent.

I dunno.

Potential temporary homes include Ottawa, Allentown, and Staten Island.  I'm betting on the latter.  In addition to the outrageous sweetheart deal to come here, the Yankees wanted something close, so they can keep an eye on the talent.  Staten Island fits the bill.

Is this anything to get upset about?  Hardly.  The Baby Bombers draw an average of 4,500 per game.  Remember, that's tickets sold, not butts in the seats, so the actual attendance figure is quite lower than the 4,500-- second worst in the International League.

I do feel sorry for the ushers and concession people, who have a nice little extra income from April to September.

This organization has done nothing to build a fan base and create excitement.   Weak promotions.  Few giveaways.   Little community involvement.  You can't blame all the attendance woes on bad weather and an unappealing stadium.  The fault lies not in our stars, but in ourselves.

It's sad to say, when the Yankees leave-- temporarily or permanently, a lot of people will let out a big yawn.