Two Mets fans were arrested Wednesday at the team's home opener when they kicked a Shea Stadium seat to pieces and tried to smuggle it out of the facility. While it's not unheard of for fans to claim souvenirs during a stadium's last stand, what the pair failed to consider was that they were at the season home opener, not the final game.
A Shea security guard saw Darrell Wassil, 30, and Christopher Yatsko, 22, both of Putnam County, kicking the seat apart and then attempting to nonchalantly put the pieces under their shirts. 'Tis the season for fan stupidity: Last week, two Yankees fans tried to steal Yankees home opener bunting. They later claimed that they weren't guilty of theft so much as victims of their own stupidity.
Baseball teams are well aware of the value that venue memorabilia holds for fans--in 2003, a woman was arrested after the Phillies' last game at Veteran's Stadium, when she exited the ladies' room with a toilet seat around her neck. A good deal of Shea Stadium, including seats, will be sold after the Mets move to Citi Field. An item on a CBS Sportsline message board gave examples of expected prices for memorabilia from Yankee and Shea Stadia. Something for the true collector: a dugout urinal expected to sell for $1,000.
The Mets are playing right now: Johan Santana is making his Shea Stadium debut against the Milwaukee Brewers.