MLB’s antitrust exemption has struck again. And this time it took the form of team territorial rights.
PNC Field, the home of the Scrantion-Wilkes Barre Yankees needs major renovations that will take all of the 2012 season. So in looking for a temporary home for the Triple-A team, the Yankees turned to Bears & Eagles Riverfront Stadium in Newark, which used to be the permanent home of a Yankees affiliate. The problem is, Newark sits squarely within the territory shared by the Yankees and Mets, and the Yankees need the Mets’ permission before temporarily relocating a team there.
Unfortunately for the Yankees the Mets said no dice for a number of reasons. Jerry Izenberg at the Star Ledger has the full story, but one of the main reasons the Mets declined the Yankees’ request is that they are worried a Triple-A Yankees team in Newark would tap into the Mets’ fan base and hurt their attendance numbers. Frankly, if the Mets can’t field a major league team that is better than the Yankees’ Triple-A team, they deserve to lose some fans.