A number of season ticket spots are going to open up after the Cubs yesterday gave a bunch of season ticket holders the boot. Why? The Cubs had identified them as scalpers.
The Cubs sent those (former) season ticket holders, together comprising almost 1,000 seats, a letter explaining the decision, which put things as delicately as possible.
“After careful consideration,” the letter states, per Crain’s Chicago, “we regret to inform you we have decided not to renew the license for your account. As a result, you will not be offered the opportunity to purchase season tickets for the 2013 season.”
Further, the letter explains, “The Chicago Cubs are dedicated to ensuring Cubs games and other events at Wrigley Field remain available to as many fans as possible who are interested in enjoyable and memorable experiences. Your season ticket location will be reallocated and made available to fans at the top of our Season Ticket Waiting List.”
In other words: you aren’t buying season tickets to try and enjoy the game, so you don’t get them anymore.
The aggrieved can try and challenge the Cubs’ decision, but season tickets are a license, granted upon certain conditions, and they can be revoked by the Cubs if you don’t follow the rules. Teams have always frowned on folks making money off of the team’s tickets (because, hey, that’s money the team could be making if they play their cards right), so a crackdown on big-time scalpers is understandable.
Don’t worry about yourself: the Cubs aren’t targeting folks who re-sell tickets to games they can’t go to, even if they sell most of their tickets. Jon Greenberg quotes a Cubs source who says, “This is about the guy in California with 40 tickets.”
If you’re cynical, you’d note that the timing of this mass ouster is interesting given the Cubs’ decision to move to dynamic pricing throughout the ballpark (i.e., as individual tickets for certain seats and games grow scarce throughout the season, the Cubs will up the price). They probably don’t want to be competing with professional scalpers.