The team arrived in 1999, and its most successful year was in 2010, when the ballpark had total attendance of 209,018. Last year, attendance dropped to 85,513, an average of 2,250 per game. By comparison, the Brooklyn Cyclones, another New York-Penn League team and a Mets farm team, averaged 5,617 fans at their Coney Island park.
The Staten Island Yankees’ team president, Will Smith, attributed the poor attendance to a shortage of parking. The park is sandwiched between two massive projects — Empire Outlets, which is described as the city’s first premium outlet mall, and the New York Wheel, which is to be the world’s largest Ferris wheel.
The Ferris wheel took the ballpark’s old parking lot. Last August, the wheel offered a parking garage with valet service and a capacity of about 800 cars. This year, the team fought for a self-park system and brought parking costs down to $6 from $8.
Mr. Smith has tried using the ballpark’s “dynamite views” to attract other events people will pay for: concerts, wrestling, a “winter wonderland” ice skating rink later this year. The recent “Unforgettable I.P.A. and Taco…