While it is the beginning of the baseball season, praise hallelujah!, there is a disturbing trend of higher ticket prices going on.
Most teams have what seems like a hundred different ticket prices. It seems that each section on each level has a price.
But the scam is what are generally "premium" dates.
These are dates that the owners and the other powers to be seem to feel they can dig into us, the fan's pockets, a little deeper for the pleasure to see the "best of the best" in each league.
Here is but one example.
The Cincinnati Reds, now perennial cellar dwellers in the National League Central division think that $7 for the cheap seats are just not enough to see some teams. When the Cleveland Indians or Chicago Cubs come to town, just fork out another $5 bucks. Your $7 ticket becomes a $12 ducet. And, as the television informercials shriek, "But wait! It does not end there!" On opening day and when the Boston Red Sox come to town, please, add another $10 and that $7 ticket you started at becomes a $22 ticket. For the pleasure of seeing the Red Sox or opening day with the Arizona Diamondbacks, you better break the kid's piggy bank for you will need all the cash.
If you think that is absurd, the Houston Astros dugout box seats, the best in the house, go from $50 to $75 for their "Premium" games. And, by coinkydink, these premium games are against the hated New York Yankees and the, you guessed it, Red Sox.
Oh, another scam is trying to get you to buy season tickets.
The Seattle Mariners best seat, the lower box, is only $40 a game if you buy season tickets. Then there is the Early Bird special, which was only good until March 28, and you can buy same seat for $58. From March 29 to date of actual game, the same seat costs you $60. But, if you decide after a long day at work to go to the yard to relax, that same $40 seat now is $65.
As a committed capitalist, I have no problem with any baseball team wanting to make money. After all, we must remember that they are not just paying the high salaries of glorified bench warmers. There is all the front office staff, the people who sell the tickets, and certainly get the most abuse, the cities that most teams lease their ball parks from. Keep in mind, the teams need to pay all of these people.
But, when major league baseball needs to do all that it can to attract the families and children to see the great American pastime, it sends the wrong message to put getting decent seats, and even the cheap seats, out of the reach of many the average fan.
I suppose some of baseball gets it. But their solution is somewhat disturbing.
Many teams offer "all you can eat sections" in which on top of the regular ticket price, usually anywhere from roughly about $15 to $20 more, you can gorge on hot dogs, peanuts, popcorn, soft drinks. It varies.
The reason it is disturbing is that, and I should talk, this nation has a weight problem. I am not saying that everyone should look perfect, thin as a rail. But we should not be aspiring to become Michael Moore or Rosie O'Donnell. This may not be such a hot idea. But, at least it is an idea.
This dizzying way for teams to make more money off of the fans can be laid at the feet of Bud Selig, the "commissioner" of major league baseball.
Mr. Selig is the worst commissioner ever. I think he should angle for a spot in a Sen. Barack administration. I mean, this moron saw players suddenly adding a lot of muscle in the 1990s and did not think that maybe there was something going on? I think that Mr. Selig probably looked the other way.
Mr. Selig seems hellbent on destroying major league baseball.
It was his hair-brained scheme to switch all kinds of teams from divisions and even leagues. He has gutted the distinctions between the American and National leagues. Umpires are no longer hired by the leagues but are part of "major league baseball". The only team that Mr. Selig switched was his Milwaukee Brewers from the American League to the National League. His team? Oh, that's right. Mr. Selig was the owner of the Brewers. And what was his claim to fame before ruining, er attaining, the Brewers? A used car salesman.
Now, all of this spiraling out of control is not all of Mr. Selig's fault. But, he can do more to encourage teams to offer better seats for less money on nights that teams do not get great attendance. But, no, Mr. Selig is just a whiner.
What we need is for an owner to say, you know what? ALL seats are half price on Monday games, no matter who we play. It would be gesture of goodwill, families can afford to attend the game without getting a loan for one of the children as collateral.
We, the fans, need to write to our favorite teams and make suggestions. For if not, this scam of tiered pricing will only continue and many a fan will simply stay home. And that is not good for any team's bottom line.