November 19, 2004 [LINK]

Baseball frenzy in Washington

In the first two days since sales began, over 10,000 people have put down a $300 deposit to get season tickets for baseball games in D.C. next year. Prices at RFK Stadium will range from $7 for the outfield upper deck to $90 for elite box seats between the dugouts, with eleven (!) different price brackets. By comparison, in the stadium's inaugrual year, 1962, there were only five price brackets, ranging from 75 cents to $3.50. Single-game ticket prices will be higher yet, but it is not yet known whether multi-game ticket packages will be sold. Another good sign for D.C. is that the "Ex-Expos" just obtained outfielder Jose Guillen from the Anaheim Angels in exchange for outfielder Juan Rivera and shortstop Maicer Izturis. Meanwhile, the D.C. city council has agreed to vote on funding for the new stadium on November 30, and it appears likely that there will be a compromise provision allowing for some private funding. MLB franchise owners postponed their vote to approve the relocation of the Expos to D.C., but Bud Selig denied it had anything to do with the delays in getting the stadium funding approved. According to the Washington Post, the main hitch is good ol' Peter Angelos, who is still haggling over revenue-sharing terms.

It is interesting to contrast the D.C. situation with that in South Florida. The Miami Herald reports that the Florida Marlins have offered to contribute $35 million more to build a new stadium in Miami, estimated to cost $420 million, for a $192 million total commitment. City officials have insisted that the Marlins say how much they would pay for any cost overruns.