The Baseball Stat You Don't Want to See ; as Owners Pay Top Dollar for Players, Ticket Prices Rise, Threatening Baseball's Enduring Status as the Last Affordable Professional Sport

By Daniel B. Wood writer of The Christian Science Monitor | The Christian Science Monitor, April 15, 2004 | Go to article overview

The Baseball Stat You Don't Want to See ; as Owners Pay Top Dollar for Players, Ticket Prices Rise, Threatening Baseball's Enduring Status as the Last Affordable Professional Sport


Daniel B. Wood writer of The Christian Science Monitor, The Christian Science Monitor


Standing in shade beneath Dodger Stadium's center field scoreboard, Juan Gutierrez explains why his family of four will only be in the stands for two games this season.

"Parking costs more, food costs more ... I just can't afford it," says Mr. Gutierrez, holding up four $30 tickets as sounds of organ music and the smell of hot dogs waft into the palm-lined parking lot. "I used to come 10 to 15 times a year, but now, forget it."

As Major League Baseball fans from here to Boston converge on their favorite ballparks for the new season, they are running into sticker shock even as many franchises say they are reaching out with new ideas to attract fans.

On average, a family of four will spend $155.52 for a day at big- league ballparks this year, up nearly 3 percent from 2003, according to a new study by Team Marketing Research in Chicago. Philadelphia Phillies fans will pay $188 (family of four), up more than 25 percent from last year. And even the bargain basement Montreal Expos - the league's least expensive team - will sock families for $100.

At the same time that they shrug and rationalize such figures as "market driven," sports industry analysts say they worry that America's favorite pastime is becoming elitist.

"We are pricing the poorer population of America out of the national game," says Peter Roby, president of the Center for the Study of Sports in Society at Northeastern University. He says statistics show participation in baseball reflect a steady decline for 15 straight years.

"Players used to live in the same neighborhoods as their fans," he says. "Now we have the alienation gap with fans increasingly resenting astronomic salaries, performance-enhancing drugs, and socially aberrant behavior by players."

Baseball owners say they are doing all they can to keep their ball parks attractive while offering enough discounts and deals to fill seats. They say they try to buffer the costs of tickets - which cover, on average, only about a third of total costs to run their franchises - by making deals with broadcasters and advertisers. To up the appeal of their teams to brand advertisers and TV networks they have to spend money for the best players.

New Angel owner, Arturo Moreno, for instance recently doled out $146 million for just two players (Vladimir Guerrero and Bartolo Colon), almost as much as the $183 million he spent to field the entire team last year.

"By no means are ticket payers shelling out enough to pay for these guys," says Robert Alvarado of the Angels' front office. "At the same time we are signing top-dollar players to attract broadcasters and corporate advertisers, we are trying to send at least some ticket prices in the other direction."

Although overall Angel ticket prices have gone up nearly 4 percent over the past year, the team is trying to cut ancillary costs such as the price of beer, programs, and souvenir caps. They are creating more kinds of family packages that include food, beverage, and tickets and offering more nights for children when general admission prices drop to $3. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

The Baseball Stat You Don't Want to See ; as Owners Pay Top Dollar for Players, Ticket Prices Rise, Threatening Baseball's Enduring Status as the Last Affordable Professional Sport
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.