Strong First Half Helps Boost A's Local TV Ratings, Attendance
The A's are 55-42 and turning a "strong first half into a home run that is driving higher TV ratings and attendance," according to Ron Leuty of the S.F. BUSINESS TIMES. A "triple-play improvement in all three categories -- in wins, ratings and attendance -- would be big victories for a new A's front-office lineup hoping to correct past management errors with an anxious fan base while loading the bases" for a potential new ballpark. A's COO Chris Giles said, "We were brought on to run the team to fix the issues the team has had historically." Leuty noted indicators of those improvements "could come" during a home series against the Giants starting Friday, when the A's open their Mount Davis seating section for the "first time in 13 years." Tickets for Mount Davis, with a capacity of 8,190, cost $10. Giles said, "That's trending toward a sellout of the entire building. We have an opportunity to break the all-time attendance record for baseball at the Coliseum." Meanwhile, the team's broadcasts from mid-June to this week's All-Star break on NBC Sports California "scored a 0.7 household rating," up from a 0.6 last year. Those ratings represent only a small boost, but for a franchise "historically stuck at the bottom" of MLB's ratings lineup, it is a "big deal." Giles said that the A's also later this month will "roll out a 'fundamentally new approach' to ticket sales" (BIZJOURNALS.com, 7/19).
FRIENDS IN HIGH PLACES: A’s President Dave Kaval this week during All-Star Game events in DC met with several Congressional leaders, including Bay Area-based Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.), as the club seeks to build political support for a potential ballpark project in Oakland. Kaval also spoke before the Future Forum, a Swalwell-chaired group of House Democrats focused on issues facing millennial Americans. “This was a really important setting to be able to talk about what baseball is doing to engage with young people,” Kaval said (Eric Fisher, Staff Writer).