SBD/January 28, 2011/Franchises

With Or Without You: U2 Concert Forces Mariners-Marlins Series To Seattle

U2 concert forces Marlins to play home series against Mariners in Seattle
MLB Thursday announced that due to a scheduling conflict, the Marlins "now will be playing their Interleague series with the Mariners in Seattle," and that the Marlins "will be the home team" for the June 24-26 series at Safeco Field, according to Joe Frisaro of MLB.com. The change "occurred because the group U2 had previously booked a concert at Sun Life Stadium." MLB has stated that the series "will be played under National League rules," so "pitchers will bat, rather than the designated hitter being used." The switch "hasn't affected Florida's season tickets, as the team invoiced its fans for 78 games, anticipating the series would be changed." Marlins President David Samson: "What happened was U2 had to reschedule for a year later, and the baseball schedule was such that there was no other way to have us at home that series. We obviously couldn't play at home, because we don't control the stadium. For one final season, we are tenants." San Juan, Puerto Rico, was "considered as an option for the switch of the series with Seattle." But "logistically, playing the June series with the Mariners there would have been difficult, because the Marlins are scheduled to face the A's in Oakland on June 28-30 before they visit the Rangers in Texas from July 1-3" (MLB.com, 1/27). Mariners VP/Communications Randy Adamack said that there is "still work to be done in terms of splitting the costs between the two clubs." Adamack: "The goal is to figure out a fair way to divide the revenues" (SEATTLEPI.com, 1/27). Adamack added that Mariners season-ticket holders "would likely have the first option to buy tickets for the games before the remaining tickets are released to the general public" (Tacoma NEWS TRIBUNE, 1/28).

FISH OUT OF WATER: ESPN's Michael Wilbon said U2 "wouldn't be doing this if they were performing at Wrigley Field or Yankee Stadium. They wouldn't get three days." ESPN's Tony Kornheiser added, "People in baseball understand that the Marlins in three days cannot gross what U2 can." He also sarcastically said, "This is a hardship on the 300 fans that the Florida Marlins have" ("PTI," ESPN, 1/27).
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