SBJ/April 29-May 5, 2013/Franchises

Weather costs Twins ‘deep into seven figures’

The Minnesota Twins have suffered a revenue loss “deep into seven figures” and perhaps still growing because of a tough combination of snow and rain plaguing their home schedule thus far at Target Field.

The Twins have postponed three games so far in 2013, two fewer than the first three seasons combined at their open-air ballpark in downtown Minneapolis. They have played several other games in subfreezing wind chills that required round-the-clock snow removal efforts.

Snow and rain has resulted in postponements at the Twins’ Target Field.
Photo by: GETTY IMAGES
Overall, MLB has recorded 17 postponements in the young 2013 season as of press time, just four fewer than all of last year and similar to the pace of 2011, when the league had 30 postponements by late May and a historically high 51 for the entire season.

The weather-induced revenue losses have touched the Twins in nearly every facet of their in-stadium business, including decreased walk-up sales, increased no-shows and lower per-cap concession and merchandise sales among those who have braved the elements. The club’s attendance as of press time was down 22 percent from a year ago to an average of 26,043 a game.

MLB as a whole is down 2.5 percent in attendance in the season’s early going to an average of 29,008, as other weather-challenged clubs such as Colorado and the Chicago Cubs and White Sox also show declines. The league was down by a similar mark early in 2011 before rebounding later that year to end a three-season attendance slide.

“It’s certainly been a challenge this month. There has been a significant drag on our per caps, walk-ups and so forth. There’s been a real revenue loss,” Twins President Dave St. Peter said. “At the same time, nobody’s feeling sorry for us. There are plenty of other clubs in a very similar situation as us. We’ve been very fortunate over the entire history of Target Field, and I take the long view.”

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