Thanks go out to Selena Roberts, who obtained much of this information while hiding in a pile of money in Alex Rodriguez's private gym.
The New York Yankees, who have shattered attendance records year after year for the past decade, have seen these very numbers plummet in 2009. Early indications suggested that high ticket prices, along with general fan dissatisfaction with the team, were behind these dwindling figures.
However, new evidence suggests that Alex Rodriguez may be the one responsible for all the hoopla.
According to Sports Illustrated's Selena Roberts, Alex Rodriguez became infuriated with the Steinbrenner's in February of 2009.
The reason: Garlic Fries.
Garlic fries you say?
For $5, Yankee fans can now indulge in garlic fries, a self-explanatory delicacy which has been a staple at west coast baseball stadiums for years.
The problem occurs, however, when fans at the new Yankee Stadium try to pair the fries with another food—chicken tenders, burgers, etc.
The policy of the booth is simple—garlic fries are sold solo.
If you want to buy a "combo meal" with one of the many entrees served at the park, you cannot substitute garlic fries in place of the traditional brand. You can order fries with an entree, but they will not be of the garlic variety, despite how much you may beg, plead, or bribe the attendee.
While there is no particular reasoning behind this, my theory is that the owners of the garlic fries stand want you to have a clean palate when eating them. Combining anything else with the new treat may not give you the full effect of the overall awesomeness of the fries.
In his first tour of the stadium in February, A-Rod attempted just this.
"I walked up to the stand and politely asked for a small order of garlic fries," Rodriguez said.
"While I was waiting, I noticed that they were also offering $15 steak sandwiches. I then revised my order, and asked for a steak sandwich combo meal. The woman attendee told me to choose one or the other and that I could not have both.
When I asked why, she simply offered me some buffalo chicken sliders. I promptly reminded her that I have not made contact with a slider since I came to New York."
Rodriguez, however, was not done.
"He had to have those damn garlic fries," said A Rod's girlfriend Madonna, who was at the stadium attempting to adopt anyone under the age of ten who walked out of the bathroom.
"When his first plan failed he went into the bathroom, put on some baby oil, kissed the mirror, and reminded himself that he was the greatest person in the world. He walked back out to the stand in nothing but leopard boxers and a fake mustache."
According to numerous sources, A-Rod then tried for four hours to get the fries. When the attendee working the stand informed A-Rod that her shift was over two hours ago, Rodriguez asked her if he had granted her permission to speak.
He then took two swings at the worker and missed twice. She then shot him an evil glare, and Rodriguez walked away. Once again, A-Rod went down looking.
Since then, many of Rodriguez's friends have compared his hatred of the new regime to Brett Favre's feelings toward the Green Bay Packers.
"He'll do anything to get back at them," one of A-Rod's cousins—who requested to be unnamed—told Sports Illustrated.
Now, new evidence has surfaced indicating that Alex has been tipping off fans about the new crisis. Only two weeks ago, Alex was seen walking out of a PNC Bank with $1 million in single dollar bills.
Three days later, a large structure resembling a garlic clove—and made solely out of $1 bills—was lit on fire on East 161st Street in the Bronx. The NYPD had this to say regarding the incident:
"We are aware of the situation, as well as Mr. Rodriguez's current situation with the Yankees, french fries, and garlic in general. All the necessary steps are being taken to see who is behind this.
If it is indeed Mr. Rodriguez, the people of the great state of New York must remind themselves that it is a blessing that this occurred in February. The odds of tracking down the culprit and bringing him to justice are much higher. NY citizens know first hand that A-Rod is nowhere to be found later in the year, especially in October."
A candid interview with one of Alex's personal trainers revealed that he has been "milking" his hip injury for as much time off as humanly possible. He went on to reassure us that "humanly possible" did cover Rodriguez, despite the fact that he seems to believe he is on a higher level than the meager human race.
Despite not playing for the first month of the season, Rodriguez has made $172,000 per game. Reports indicate that he has been pedaling this money to bribe fans from staying away from the Stadium and, in particular, the Garlic Fries stand.
"His ego is out of control," said Madonna.
"Alex always had this weird expression. He always says he 'keeps his ego in his chest and not in his pants, because sports are about playing with heart and not personal satisfaction.'
I never knew what that meant until I started dating Alex. His chest is gigantic, probably bigger than mine when I think about it. And there is nothing excessive in those pants, believe me."
Asked when Alex said this, Madonna replied, "Actually, now that I think about it, he didn't actually say it. I think he hired someone to read his mind, write it down, and say it for him. So he... well, he didn't do anything. But he never really does now that I think about it."
One question, however, still remains.
Will putting a ridiculously overpriced Rodriguez back in the batter's box put fans back in the ridiculously overpriced seats at Yankee Stadium?
For one thing, Alex will no longer be able to protest the delicious fry stand 24/7 as he has been doing now.* Without someone to bad mouth the concessions at the Stadium, people will have no idea about the ordeal A-Rod went through.
Fans complain about performance on the field and prices in the seats surrounding it.
The Yankees are underachieving without Rodriguez in the lineup, but that can be credited more to the team having the highest ERA in the league (5.93) than anything else.
And as for the seat prices, someone has to pay A-Rod his $172k a game, right?
Well, thanks to your donation to the Pay-A-Diva Society in the form of a ticket which costs $500 an out, Mr. Rodriguez will be paid in full.
The check will come from the Steinbrenner's, but it may as well come from you. And until the Yanks get rid of A-Rod, nothing will change.
But he still won't get those damned garlic fries.
*Alex Rodriguez has done no actual protesting. Instead, he took his seventh inning salary from one game to hire 15 illegal immigrants to protest for him on the streets surrounding the stadium.
In Alex's eyes, however; it's all the same.