I never figured Fred Wilpon for a Pixies fan, but it would appear as though “Gouge Away” is his favorite tune. The New York Post’s Phil Mushnick reports on the Mets’ post-season ticket invoices.
A season’s ticket holder of four tickets last winter received his/her bill, to be paid in full by Jan. 27. That bill included a $20 “handling” fee to deliver all 81 games’ tickets, in this case, totaling 324 tickets.
This postseason, the Mets’ “handling” charge for those same four seats is $5 per ticket. One must buy all 10 potential home games, thus the handling charge for the four seats for the 10 games is $200.
Let’s recap: The Mets charged $20 to send a customer 324 regular-season tickets. The Mets then charged that same customer $200 to send 40 postseason tickets. That’s not even a fleecing on top of a gouging, that’s a robbery.
Ahh, but the Mets will provide some post-postseason relief. For those games that go unplayed, they will credit one’s 2007 account the cost of those games’ tickets plus the $5 per ticket handling fee. Or, several interest-free loan months later, the Mets will provide a refund on the tickets and the $5 per ticket handling fee.
So, then, the handling fee has nothing to do with handling, does it?
How does one issue “handling fee” refunds? The tickets are either handled or they aren’t. If the handling fee reflects the cost of handling the tickets, no credit or refund should be needed.
Of course, the “handling fee,” in this case, is just a beard, a front, an invention to pad the bill and the Mets’ bottom line. It’s just another tack-on, a test of your will, your wits and your wallet.
I’m not all about bashing Sterling Enterprises this Sunday, no sir. TSA and Homeland Security would do well to speak to whoever at Shea Stadium decided it would be a good idea to prevent ticket holders from moving between levels (upper reserved to mezz, mezz to loge), if only to search for a shorter beverage line. I had a tougher time manuevering through Shea this past Friday night than I did 3 different airports in the past week, and rightly so. The single biggest threat to our nation’s security is not a knife wielding, bomb-carrying jihadist on an international flight, but is more likely to be a person holding an $18 ticket to a Mets game. And they’re not practicing racial profiling at Shea — everyone sitting in the cheap seats is being treated like shit in equal measures.
Here’s a handful of transactions you might’ve been lucky enough to miss. With Ramon Castro being placed on the 60 day DL, the Mets have signed Kelly Stinnett. It could be worse — at least they didn’t make a move for Matt LeCroy. San Diego promoted Manny Alexander last week. Look for the Padres batboys to put on an extra twenty pounds of muscle between now and the end of the season.
Upon signing Jose Vizcaino, the Cardinals DFA’d Timo Perez earlier this week. In other thrilling ex-Mets news, 2B Jeff Keppinger was called up from Omaha by the Royals to take the roster spot vacated by Reggie Sanders. The latter will undergo surgery to repair the torn patella tendon in his left knee. The former will undergo the misery of having to be within smelling distance of Buddy Bell.