The Yankees are giving away free tickets for their most expensive seats for the 2013 season.
The Legends seats, which normally cost $500-$1,250 per game, stretch from dugout to dugout around home plate. Since the inception of the new stadium in 2009, they have been noticeably sparsely filled at times.
ESPNNewYork.com obtained an e-mail sent to Legends suite licensees on Thursday, which offered "complimentary" Legends tickets for preselected games to multiyear season-ticket holders who own those seats.
A Yankees spokesman said season-ticket holders will receive two tickets per seat and can use them at select games. In other words, if you own two seats, you will receive two more Legends tickets.
"As the 2013 season approaches and the Yankees begin their quest for a 28th World Series title, we are excited to continue extending new benefits to our most valued Legends Suite Licensees," the e-mail read.
"New for the 2013 season, you will be eligible for a total of ONE complimentary Legends Suite Bonus Tickets for each seat you own to be used during pre-selected game(s) of the Yankees 2013 regular season. The tickets you redeem can be split among various games, subject to availability."
In explaining their side, the Yankees said they are just trying to give their Legends suite holders added value.
"The Yankees have always provided numerous benefits to our Season Ticket Holders and over the past year we have received requests from our Legends Suite Holders for benefits similar to those provided to other Suite Holders in Yankee Stadium," Yankees chief operating officer Lonn Trost said in a statement to ESPNNewYork.com. "For the 2013 season, we have implemented this new benefit for our multi-year Legends Suite Holders based on those requests."
The Yankees have never extended the offer to Legends suite season-ticket holders before.
In 2012, the Yankees finished second in attendance in major league baseball, according to numbers from BaseballReference.com. The Yankees drew 3,542,406, which was 111,274 less than in 2011. The Philadelphia Phillies had baseball’s highest attendance in 2012 with 3,565,718, according to the website.
The Yankees are trying to protect their season ticket base, which they say was their prime motivation to opt out of Major League Baseball’s agreement with StubHub. Instead, the Yankees have teamed with Ticketmaster in their own secondary-buyer program.
StubHub and the Yankees are haggling in court about whether StubHub can have an office near Yankee Stadium, where fans could potentially pick up tickets near game time. Thus far, the Yankees have prevailed in keeping StubHub’s Bronx location closed.