AMNY.com — Two new baseball stadiums will grace the city in 2009, but experts and fans expect average Joes to be squeezed out as...

AMNY.com — Two new baseball stadiums will grace the city in 2009, but experts and fans expect average Joes to be squeezed out as the Yankees and Mets move into those sleek but smaller homes.

Shea Stadium currently holds 55,601 seats, while the new Citi Field will hold about 44,000, or 20 percent fewer seats. Tickets generally run from $9 to around $100 at Shea. The House that Ruth Built, meanwhile, holds 57,000 seats, but its billion-dollar replacement will hold between 50,000 and 54,000. Tickets cost anywhere from $12 to $400…

…when push comes to shove, devoted fans just aren’t as valuable as other clientele, according to Don Vaccaro, chief executive of www.TicketLiquidator.com. When people like Goldman and Kaplan stay away from the stadiums more often, it’s actually good for the ballclubs’ long-term bottom lines, he says.

“The problem is the fan who goes to every game — that person doesn’t buy much in merchandise, food and beverage, and that seat he’s filling doesn’t create new fans,” Vaccaro says. “When you charge higher prices and still sell out, the average person goes to fewer games, so you’re actually building the fan base. The idea is to decrease the number of games each fan sees.”…

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