So Far, Cubs Fans Aren’t Voting With Their Wallets

A common rallying cry for frustrated Chicago Cubs fans both here and elsewhere on the ‘net is that we should all start “voting with our wallets.” In other words: stop showing up at Wrigley Field.

The theory being, if ownership starts seeing empty seats as a result of the crummy product on the field, they’ll realize that more money needs to be spent to build a winner. I’m not 100% sold on the idea that taking money away from the very people we would like to see spending money on the Cubs is the best approach, but I could be convinced.

Either way, it’s academic at this point: Cubs fans aren’t staying away despite the expense of a trip to Wrigley Field.

At an average price of $46.90, Chicago Cubs tickets are the most expensive in the National League, according to April statistics compiled by Team Marketing Report, an industry newsletter in Wilmette.

While the team’s losing record and fifth place standing in the National League Central Division might not suggest that fans are getting equal value for their investment, the Wrigley faithful have few complaints about the team’s pricey tickets.

“They’re probably the most popular team in the National League,” said Justin Botts, who had just moved to Chicago from Omaha and was attending his first game Monday. “They have a good fan base here so they can charge high prices, and they’ll get them sold.”

Botts’ assessment is correct—at least so far. Despite poor weather for many home games during the first two months of the season, the Cubs are averaging 35,063 fans per game. The team is filling 85.2 percent of Wrigley Field’s capacity, third in the National League behind the two teams that played in the league championship series last season – Philadelphia and San Francisco.

A season ago under the new ownership of the Ricketts family, the Cubs overtook the Boston Red Sox as the most expensive average ticket in baseball at $52.56. Despite finishing with a record of just 75-87 that season, fans of the Lovable Losers continue to flock to the ballpark. Medill Reports.

Now, those of us who’ve watched the games can attest to the fact that the 35,063 number is merely the tickets sold figure, rather than the actual attendance. That means, setting aside the tickets, the Cubs probably still are losing money on concessions.

That said, clearly, the attendance thing is all relative. We’ve been hearing all year that attendance is down across baseball, and, although attendance is down at Wrigley, the Cubs are still doing better than almost every other team.

Brett Taylor is the editor and lead writer at Bleacher Nation, and can also be found as Bleacher Nation on Twitter and on Facebook.

6 responses to “So Far, Cubs Fans Aren’t Voting With Their Wallets”

  1. BWoodrum

    I was under the impression that attendance, though not Tampa Bay terrible, was actually down for the Cubs this year. Plus, tickets on the secondary market are consistently at a HUGE discount, sometimes going unsold at prices as cheap as $1.

  2. jim

    Most tix were bot before opening day.

  3. Nick

    $1 sounds like a fair price.

  4. pfk

    I wouldn’t give a plugged nickel to watch this team. I love going to Wrigley but I can’t play into the “experience thing” with this bad of a squad. Oh hell, of course I would. Damn me!

  5. Jeff

    It doesn’t matter how bad the team is, you can’t beat an afternoon at Wrigley for a couple of dollars. I don’t live in Chicago anymore, but if I did, I would be at Wrigley as often as possible for the price tickets are going for on the secondary market. I guess I don’t vote with my wallet either.