SBD/February 18, 2011/Franchises

The San Francisco Treat: Giants Enter Season As One Of MLB's Hottest Draws

Giants have sold 25,000 season tickets for '11, up from 21,000 last year
As the Giants prepare to defend their World Series title, there is a "gold rush for tickets" at AT&T Park, according to a front-page piece by Tom FitzGerald of the S.F. CHRONICLE. Giants Managing VP/Ticket Sales & Services Russ Stanley said that "total ticket sales are about 25 percent ahead of last year," despite a roughly 7% increase in prices from '10. The Giants have sold 25,000 season tickets for '11, up from 21,000 last year. The Giants are the only MLB team "that doesn't sell partial plans, although they help people find partners to share them." At this rate, "only two other teams -- the Yankees and Phillies -- will sell more season tickets, or full-season equivalents in partial plans." FitzGerald noted the Giants have "so much ticket momentum that it's possible they could challenge their club record attendance" of 3.3 million in '00, AT&T Park's opening season. Stanley: "It would be a real stretch, but not out of the realm of possibility." StubHub Corporate Communications Manager Joellen Ferrer indicated that single-game tickets on the resale market are "moving at well over double the pace of last year at this time." StubHub also reported that the Giants' home opener against the Cardinals on April 8 is "its top selling major league game for the season so far." FitzGerald noted given the team's success, it "might be a good time to sell a charter seat license, a requirement for buying season tickets for 16,000 of the best seats." On the Giants' online seat-license marketplace, 418 licenses "were for resale recently with asking prices as high as $35,000 for a premium field club seat" (S.F. CHRONICLE, 2/17).

GIANTS, SHOWTIME ON SAME PAGE: Showtime Sports Exec VP & GM Ken Hershman said that after some "early miscommunication with the ... Giants, the club 'likes what they are seeing so far' of a new show documenting the team's 2011 season." Some Giants players and execs were concerned about the show being a "Hard Knocks"-style reality show, but it will be filmed in documentary form instead. Hershman said, "We told them exactly what we are doing and that changed the whole dynamic in a positive way. We said, 'You'll see as we roll out what we'll be doing, we're just here to document,' and they like what they are seeing so far. ... There wasn't any great drama involved. MLB has done a great job in walking them through what they should expect." Hershman "hopes that this will be the beginning of a regular series." He said, "We're hoping to have other teams knocking at our door to be next" (Ben Grossman, BROADCASTINGCABLE.com, 2/18).
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