MLB Franchise Notes: White Sox See "OK" Start To General Ticket Sales
White Sox Senior VP/Sales & Marketing Brooks Boyer said that the team's "first few hours of individual ticket sales to the general public were 'OK.'" Boyer: "Not great, but part of it is our season sales, our seven-game plans and 14-game plans are hundreds of percentage points up. ... Although I would have thought, with the $20 seats and $15 seats on Sunday that we would have ticked higher on our first day, it wasn’t all that bad because when you look at where we are and who’s probably buying baseball tickets at the end of January, it’s OK" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 1/28).
BIG FISH? In Miami, Barry Jackson wrote Marlins Owner Jeffrey Loria's "meddling in personnel decisions is widely known, but it’s even worse than perceived." Besides "suggesting or dictating free agent signings and players to trade, Loria has instructed his front office to demote several players." But the "broader question is this: Why is the owner even involved to this extent with personnel?" An MLB player agent said if Marlins President of Baseball Operations Larry Beinfest and VP & GM Michael Hill were "left alone and given autonomy, they would be much better off." Another agent said, "Jeffrey wants to be Jerry Jones and George Steinbrenner making personnel decisions, but Jones and Steinbrenner want to win. Jeffrey wants to make money first. That’s the difference" (MIAMIHERALD.com, 1/27).
MINI-APPLE: In St. Paul, Brian Murphy noted the Twins' fan festival yesterday concluded its three-day run at the Metrodome, "perhaps for the last time." The Twins are "uncertain whether the building still will be available next January or demolished to make room for the Vikings' new stadium." Team President Dave St. Peter said that the club is "considering several Twin Cities venues to replace the Dome, such as the Minneapolis Convention Center, St. Paul RiverCentre, Mall of America or perhaps a tandem event at Target Field and Target Center" (TWINCITIES.com, 1/27).
THE FIFTH WHEEL: In a special to MLB.com, Jeff Seidel reported the Nationals on Saturday introduced William Taft, the 27th President, "as the fifth member of the nightly Presidents Race." Taft "received a loud ovation from a packed ballroom" when he made his debut at the team's NatsFest (MLB.com, 1/26). In DC, Dan Steinberg noted Taft has an "intimate connection with baseball, having started the tradition of ceremonial first-pitch tossing with a 1910 delivery." He also is "widely credited with having accidentally created the seventh-inning stretch." The team will refer to Taft as "Bill" and the "Big Chief," due to his later role as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court (WASHINGTONPOST.com, 1/25).