The Yankees’ home opener is Monday and if any unicorns, sharks, dinosaurs or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles end up sitting behind home plate, don’t blame John Oliver.
“I think we’re probably banned,” the “Last Week Tonight” host cracked when I asked him if he’d be attending a game this year. Oliver chatted with me before performing at The Garden Of Laughs stand-up comedy concert, benefiting Madison Square Garden’s The Garden Of Dreams Foundation. Last season, Oliver ran a contest that sent costumed fans in to the prestigious Legends Seats in Yankee Stadium following comments by Yankees COO Lonn Trost. While attempting to explain the policies regarding price floors and print-at-home tickets, Trost said that those who typically sit in expensive seats would be frustrated by fans who don’t normally sit in a premium location.
Oliver dedicated an entire segment to Trost’s words on his show, lambasting both he and the Yankees for the perceived “holier-than-thou” practice. Then with the hashtag “#IHaveNeverSatInAPremiumLocation,”the HBO host gave away pairs of Legends Seats for a quarter with the only condition bring that you had to wear something out-of-the-ordinary to the game.
Following the final game of fans dressing up and chowing down on five-star cuisine from the stadium’s finest seats, the Yankees ran a message on the scoreboard: “Thanks, John Oliver. Everyone is welcome at Yankee Stadium.”
I brought this to the comedian’s attention.
“Oh yeah. Sure they did,” he responded. “The Yankees say a lot of things on the JumboTron they don’t mean, like ‘Great to have you, A-Rod.’”
— Ralphie Aversa (@ralphieaversa) March 30, 2017