35,000 seat Ballpark!?!?
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I just read that Lew Wolff may be planning on cutting cost by going from a 40,000-45,000 seat stadium to a 35,000 seat stadium. If that was to happen, not only would it be smaller than Pittsburg's 38,000 seat stadium, but it would be the smallest in the Major Leagues. Don't get me wrong, I'm for any solution to helping the A's ballpark "problems", but man 35,000! The A's have the capability to draw twice as many fans.
| By chris_d on Friday, April 01, 2005 - 02:15 pm:|
OF510, where did you read that?
On the "new A's ballpark" blog thing.
| By yc2578 on Friday, April 01, 2005 - 04:05 pm:|
Considering if a team averages 35,000/game they would have a yearly attendance of 2.835 million, I have no problem with that size of a stadium. Besides it's a smart business move as the fewer the seats, the higher the demand.
| By deajay on Friday, April 01, 2005 - 04:27 pm:|
It was also in the LA Times article this morning. I don't have a problem with a smaller park either. Though I think it should be at least 38,000, but I would settle for 35,000.
Start saving a little cash...and get season tickets... you got time. My wife and I are going to buy season tix YA BETTER BELIEVE!!! 38,000 is a perfect number of seats. I'M TALKING LIKE WE ALREADY GOT A STADIUM LOL.
| By eyleenn on Saturday, April 02, 2005 - 12:25 am:|
Chris, the 35K seat reference is in the last paragraph of the LA Times article.
| By bubba69 on Saturday, April 02, 2005 - 07:30 am:|
They will never get an allstar game at that size!
Fenway got one...SBC is getting one...and also...who friggin cares...I'd like to see a WORLD SERIES in the park first. An all-star game???!!!!
| By bubba69 on Saturday, April 02, 2005 - 10:06 am:|
Fenway got one because of age and it is planning on being replaced..SBC seats what 43K...But you are right lets hold a WS first....
| By eyleenn on Saturday, April 02, 2005 - 02:12 pm:|
I read something recently about Fenway to the effect that the decision has been made to renovate, not replace it.
Pittsburg is getting the 2006 All-star game and their ballpark is only 38,000 seats, and therir stadium is new.
Even though Fenway Park just as it is makes it a huge (and historic) attraction - and allows the Red Sox to charge more than anyone (Yankees included) for tickets, the Red Sox have been clammoring for years that they need to retire this golden goose and build a new stadium.
Why? 33,871 seats are not enough!
Selling out Tuesday night games in April will be hard, so they will not average 35,000 in a 35,000 stadium over the long haul. But I can see weekend games easily selling out at 40,000 (or more). If we're in this for the long term, in a large market the size of the Bay Area, I suggest they put in a minimum of 40,000 rather than 35,000 seats.
Another factor will be ticket prices and revenue stream. Realistically, the A's will probably always have to charge a bit less than the Giants, so a stadium that seats 7,000 less than the Giants is a large double penalty. The Giants selling out 42,000 at $40 average vesus the A's selling out 35,000 at $35 average creates a $37M annual revenue difference (136.1M vs. 99.2), whereas the A's selling out at 40,000 and $35 average would cut that difference to $23M (136.1M vs. 113.4M). I don't think a new A's stadium prices would be any different between a 35,000 seat stadium versus a 40,000 seat one. (By the way, as it is now, averaging 27,000 at $25 each produces only $54.7M, a $81M difference less than the Giants.)
For those that say a smaller stadium would drive prices up like Fenway, I would think not really. Here there is a game every day (A's or Giants) so prices will be competitive. If the Oakland Coliseum had a set capacity of 43,000 the supply side would be constrained; what messes up the equation is the A's simply add more supply (Mt. Davis - up to ~55,000) whenever the demand rises, so supply is never constrained now, which keeps prices low. The A's are willing to trade off ticket revenue in favor of increased attendance volume (Wednesdays, too) - it wouldn't be that way in a new stadium, be it 40,000 or 35,000.
Again, I think 35,000 is too much of a competitive disadvantage; they should go with 40,000 (or more).
Here are the 2001 numnbers from an article by the late Doug Pappas for the A's & Giants. The columns are regular season game receipts, regular season attendance, revenue per ticket, avg. ticket price, and differece between revenue per ticket and average ticket price.
San Francisco 67,173,000 3,311,958 20.28 23.38 (3.10)
Oakland 24,992,000 2,133,277 11.72 13.96 (2.24)
Receipts: MLB financial disclosures.
Attendance: STATS, Inc.
Average ticket price: Team Marketing Report 2001 "Fan Cost Index" survey.
It's interesting that the A's are mocked for the double play wednesday promotions, yet the Giants differential between revenue/ticket and avg ticket price was greater. The A's have cut the gap in avg ticket prices almost in half since then. 2004 avg ticket prices: Oakland - 16.49; SF - 21.60. I think the Giants will also have a larger debt service on their park; the A's are talking of capping their investment at $100MM. However, the Giants talk of debt service woes are overblown, they raised a huge sum from seat licesning, and I think the naming rights essentialy paid for the rest.
| By okplayer on Sunday, April 03, 2005 - 01:30 pm:|
what I'd be curious to know is what the profit/retained earnings are for mlb clubs. revenue only tells part of the story.
| By asch on Monday, April 04, 2005 - 08:32 am:|
I wouldn't mind a small stadium....what it hurts is post season potential - during the regular season, I think that's fine. What they should do if they go with such a small stadium, is having a place where people can buy a cheap cheap tix and just stand and watch behing the OF, or bring a folding chair or something that may add more viewing availability.
| By rono on Monday, April 04, 2005 - 11:25 am:|
Any stadium with a 30 - year lease will do.
| By deajay on Wednesday, April 06, 2005 - 09:32 am:|
I agree with Adam, provide walkways, areas where they can have SO crowds during our postseasons ... of which we hope to have many.
| By finleyshero on Wednesday, April 06, 2005 - 03:32 pm:|
Why don't they just open up the outfield to 880? Then you could watch the game while you're stuck in traffic.
| By samk on Wednesday, April 06, 2005 - 04:22 pm:|
Remember that ballpark outfields traditionally are on the Northeast side of the stadium (due to sun issues) so the walk around standing room would be by the railroad, or close by.
| By oaktownfan on Wednesday, April 06, 2005 - 07:14 pm:|
I think a 35-38k stadium is too small. I mean, there would be many A's fans left out especially the kids and those who probably couldn't afford to pay the higher ticket prices in a new stadium.
40-42k is what I'd be asking for. SBC and Citizens Bank Park are the prototypical.
| By gregorymark on Wednesday, April 06, 2005 - 08:53 pm:|
Any stadium with a 30 - year lease will do.
That would be fine with me. Another 30 years and I'll be dead.
| By ssblip on Thursday, April 07, 2005 - 12:40 am:|
Let's just get a stadium that seats a million. Yeah! That should get us an all-star game and a championship. Somehow. Hocus pocus, whoop-de-menechino!
Ok, joke over. OKPlayer, I noticed nobody responded to your comment asking about going beyond revenue and talking actual profits...and nobody responded. Anyone, anyone?
A 35K stadium is exactly what's needed from an ownership perspective.
Said Peter Magowan, when he looked at Windlestick Park after he bought the Gints, "The problem with this place is anyone can buy a ticket."
The owners like smaller stadiums because it puts the casual fan, like most A's fans, in a panic mode, figuring they won't be able to walk up and buy tickets to individual games anymore. Then, they all run out and buy PSLs and season tickets, thereby lining the pocket of ownership.
This is the Kenesaw Mountain Selig model, and remember, a Selig protégé now owns the team.