Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Spring Training: Cheap tickets ... except for the Dodgers

For a die-hard baseball fan, there's nothing like catching a game at a small ballpark in Arizona in March.

Spring Training baseball offers the best of the Big Leagues, plus you get perfect weather, small, intimate ballparks, and the chance to see favorite players and young up-and-comers up close.

And, it's affordable.

Unless you want to see the Dodgers, that is.

For most of the teams that hold camp in Arizona, you can snag a ticket behind home plate for as low as $17, although $23 is more typical.  If you don't mind sitting on the lawn in the outfield, you can watch a game live and have a picnic for $5 or $6.

But for the Dodgers, be prepared to pay $42 to $47 -- PLUS Ticketmaster's "convenient" extra fees -- for the top tickets.  And the "cheap" seats on the lawn behind the outfield wall?  $10-12.

Here's a comparison of ticket prices behind home plate for the Cactus League's clubs:
  • Colorado     $17
  • Arizona     $18
  • Milwaukee     $21
  • Oakland     $21
  • Cleveland/Cincinnati     $23
  • Seattle/San Diego     $23
  • Texas/Kansas City     $23
  • San Francisco     $24-30
  • Chicago Cubs     $28-30
  • Angels     $29
  • Dodgers/White Sox     $42-47
So who's out of line?  Yup -- the Dodgers, and the other team they share the Camelback Ranch facility with, the Chicago White Sox.

But just because you play in a new ballpark (Camelback opened for business last spring), does that mean you have the green light to charge double what many other teams charge?

Sure, it can be argued that Dodgers Cactus League tickets are affordable -- but that's only by comparison to the prices they charge at Dodger Stadium.


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