Everyone Meets The Mets: Opener At Citi Field Sets Venue's Attendance Record
The Mets Thursday drew a sellout and Citi Field-record crowd of 42,080 for their season opener, with club officials insisting there was far less chance than suggested in press reports that the Mets would fail to sell out a home opener for the first time since '97. Several promos, including free tickets to certain purchasers for Citi Field games this weekend, were used to help boost attendance for Friday's game, with more than 2,500 tickets sold in the 24 hours prior to the game. There were still some visible chunks of unused seats beyond the right field wall throughout the game. Mets Exec VP/Business Operations Dave Howard said, "The sales numbers over the last four, five days indicated we would be sold out today.” Howard added an attendance uptick for the club remains quite possible this year after three straight annual declines, particularly if the team shows improvement on the field. Howard, referring in part to the Bernie Madoff-related financial woes that enveloped the club prior to last month's legal settlement in a clawback lawsuit, said, "We're now in a good position and are now back on the upswing. A lot of distractions are now behind us. We now get to focus on the core business and the fun stuff" (Eric Fisher, SportsBusiness Journal).
HONORING A LEGEND: On Long Island, Steven Marcus notes late Baseball HOFer Gary Carter prior to Braves-Mets Thursday was “remembered in a pregame ceremony with a video montage of his career.” Carter was “essentially lionized as the Mets unveiled a unique emblem on the wall in left-center, in the form of home plate.” Mets players will “wear the logo on their uniforms this season.” Players and coaches Thursday also “wore Carter’s No. 8 jersey during batting practice, and Carter’s No. 8 jersey hung in the Mets’ dugout during the game” (NEWSDAY, 4/6).