Well, it turns out the Oakland Athletics aren’t really the ones to blame for the significant increase in playoffs ticket packages. Not long after publishing my post on Wednesday I learned Major League Baseball is responsible for setting the ticket prices for the World Series. At $100 bucks a pop for season ticket holders, a World Series ticket in the bleachers increased by a staggering $35 dollars in one year. If you don’t have season tickets, you’ll have to pony up $45 more dollars compared to last season. Although the A’s aren’t doing us any favors by increasing ALDS tickets by $5 bucks each and ALCS tickets by $9 (for bleachers), those are a lot easier to stomach and understand than jacking up Series tickets by more than half of what they were the year before. Some sections have even bigger increases, so at least us bleacher folk aren’t getting screwed over too badly. While I know increased demand and an unchanged supply lead to higher prices, these hefty boosts reek of a callous cash grab. Does Major League Baseball really need an extra $35 per World Series game out of me? In my opinion, not really.
A $10 or $20 increase, while still met with some consternation, wouldn’t seem as unpleasant and was actually expected from me. But $35? That’s a bit steep. Still, when compared to other teams the A’s have some of the lowest playoffs ticket prices in the league. I suppose it’s one of the few benefits of playing in an outdated stadium that draws the ire of fans and writers.
In the end, I understand why I’m shelling out more dough, I’m just not happy about it. If the increases were a bit less I wouldn’t feel as slighted as I do now. But hey, it could be the insanity of 2002 all over again when the A’s had the highest playoffs prices in the league and Steve Schott mocked us for not caving into his ridiculous demands.
In other news…
- Unless you were in jail the past couple of days you’ve likely heard that MLB is planning to expand instant replay next season. The owners will be voting on the proposal in November, with a 75 percent vote needed for approval, after which the players’ association and umpires would have to agree to the changes. Even though I consider myself a baseball purist, I don’t see anything wrong with implementing measures to make sure calls are correct. I’ve always believed MLB has the worst officiating of the “Big Four.” However, I don’t agree with the system they laid out. Having a certain number of challenges makes this a game within the game, and runs the risk of letting questionable calls slide by managers who are reluctant to challenge for fear of losing it. MLB should’ve taken a page from the NHL’s book and just have all reviews come straight from the central office with no limits. That way we’re sure every call will be right and save the few moments where a manager has to run out from the dugout, argue his case and ask for a review. However, this is a step in the right direction, so we’ll see how it goes.
- Brett Anderson is scheduled to begin a rehab assignment tomorrow for Sacramento, and the tentative plan at the moment is to put him in the bullpen when the assignment is completed in order to get him back on the Major League roster quicker. Anderson hasn’t pitched in a game since April and would likely need three to four weeks to build up his arm strength to throw 80-100 pitches as a starter. Sticking him in the bullpen would give him a chance to get his arm back in starting shape at the big league level and allows the A’s to take advantage of his talent sooner rather than later. Even when Bartolo Colon struggling lately, the A’s rotation isn’t hurting for depth thanks to the emergence of Sonny Gray.
- Speaking of Sonny, Sean Davis over at Swingin’ A’s posted an informative article that compares the rookie right-hander to Matt Cain and what to look for going forward. It’s a quick read that is definitely worth a few minutes of your time.