The Yankees have evened the score with the creator of the “Yankees Suck” T-shirts that have become ubiquitous at Fenway Park over the past two decades.
Ray LeMoine, a Boston-area native whose lived in Manhattan for the past 15 years, is basking in the spotlight of a brand new “ESPN 30 for 30” podcast focusing on the “Yankees Sucks” shirts he made hundreds of thousands of dollars selling at Fenway Park from 1999-2004 while he was in college. The movie rights to his story have even been bought by Sam Raimi’s wife Gillian Green.
But the 38-year-old entrepreneur tells us that he spent a week last month on Rikers Island because of outstanding warrants, including one from 2003 that came about when he was caught scalping Yankees-Red Sox playoff tickets in the Bronx.
“The Yankees got their revenge on me,” LeMoine confessed.
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According to LeMoine, his car was towed on Memorial Day weekend. When he went to reclaim it, he was arrested on back warrants, including the ticket scalping charge.
“I was an idiot,” he laughed, recalling not only his recent arrest, but that fateful October Day in 2003, when he figured the police officers standing outside Yankee Stadium during Game 2 of the ALCS playoffs wouldn’t bother arresting a lowly scalper.
“The worst part was that I missed seeing Pedro (Martinez) pitch against (Roger) Clemens in Game 3!” he said.
LeMoine estimates he was arrested 30 times while hawking his homemade “Yankees Suck” t-shirts in the three year period he personally sold the tees on the streets of Boston. But that was no big deal.
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“In Boston, you go to jail, you’re out the next day,” he recalled. “In New York, you go into the system.”
By some accounts, LeMoine and his college buddies were selling 300 to 500 tee-shirts per night at $ 10 to $ 20 a piece at Red Sox home games. During the playoffs, legend has it that LeMoine and his pals could sell upward of 1,000 shirts. LeMoine wouldn’t confirm either of those numbers.
LeMoine plans to be in Boston this weekend, where he’s consulting for Wallis 9 nightclub just outside of Beantown. It just so happens that the first place Red Sox will host the second place Yankees while he’s there. LeMoine hopes to score a last minute ticket, but doesn’t know what he’ll wear.
“I think I still have one of the original shirts somewhere,” he said.
With Brian Niemietz