The Minnesota Twins have become the baseball version of the 2010-2011 Minnesota Timberwolves.
After winning just 15 games the previous season and as fans gave up on the squad, the team cut its ticket prices in half. At one point, some center court, upper deck season tickets could be had for just $5 a game. Even then, the team didn’t draw that well because $5 was still too much to pay for a team that would go on to win just 17 games.
Then came the hard part as the team improved: Raising ticket prices, alienating many season ticket holders when a series of price increases pushed the price of seats up at rate higher than the rate of an increase in wins.
The Twins do not appear interested in making the same mistake.
We’re approaching the time of the year when the team sets its ticket prices for next season, the Star Tribune’s Michael Rand reports, but it doesn’t sound like the team is interested in significantly lowering the cost of watching bad baseball.
The Twins went the bargain route during their darkest days in the Metrodome. (Raise your hand if you can remember getting a season ticket for $99.) With those days in mind, [Twins president Dave] St. Peter noted that it takes “a long time to get back from that from a business standpoint.”
St. Peter added: “We’ll try to be strategic, but [discounts] are short-term fixes. Fans are less concerned about discounts and more concerned about what action is going to be taken to ensure we fix the on-field product.”
But there’s a difference between being a little below-average and historically bad (the Twins are on pace to be far closer to the latter than the former). They have between 13,000 and 14,000 full season-ticket equivalents this year, about 1,000 more than last year.
Rand says if the team doesn’t improve, the silence you hear will be 2017 at Target Field.
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