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The Nats Home Plate Problem....

No, I’m not talking about the Nats run production.  I’m talking about the empty seats behind home plate.  I first noticed it back in 2008 when I went to a day game with some co-workers.  Look at all that blue!!!

Empty Box seats

I knew those seats were “expensive” but never really followed up.  Until last week.  Watching the Nats during a homestand… and the seats behind home plate are still pretty much empty…. even during a Strasburg start!! Huh?!?!?

So I decided to do some research.  I figured the seats in that section ran about $100.   Wanna guess how much they actually are??

Whatever you guessed…. go higher!

The answer is  $325.  Yes  Three Hundred Twenty Five ….. Dollars!!!!   (And that’s for a Non Premium Game…. the price goes up to $335 if the Phillies are in town)

So I went to the O’s website to see what Angelos was charging for approximately the same seats.  $55.  Yes  Fifty Five …. Dollars.  I was like what??? (The price does go up to $88 when the Yankees are in town, but still).

I was beyond confused.  Why are the Nats charging such a ridiculous amount??  So I did some more reading on the Nats website.  The $325 seats are called – Lexus Presidents Seats.

Lexus Presidents Seats provide the option to purchase a parking pass in a Nationals Park garage based upon availability, an all-inclusive gourmet buffet, complimentary in-seat food and non-alcoholic beverage service, and access to the Lexus Presidents Club, PNC Diamond Club, and Stars and Stripes Club.

Ok.  So your $325 gets you some perks.  But who can eat $200 worth of food at a ballgame? And it doesn’t even include beer, though who could drink even $100 worth of beer at a ball game??  Not me… even if I arrived when the gates opened, and left when the ushers rolled me out after the game was over!!

Do you really want people that buy the seats behind home plate sitting in the PNC Diamond Club?  Instead of in their seats for the cameras?  FOX will be carrying the July 3rd game.  I would think the Nats would want to present the best possible image to a National audience.

These seats weren’t selling in 2008 and they aren’t selling now… maybe it is time to re-evaluate your pricing strategy.  How about 2 pricing tiers for those seats?  One where you just buy the ticket for a reasonable price, and then you have the ability to add the option to purchase the perks?

8 comments to The Nats Home Plate Problem….

  • The person advising the Nats on the pricing of those seats is evidently the same one who advised the Metro board on its new pricing strategy.

    • michelle

      Good one!

      Actually someone that I follow on Twitter inidicated that the Nats are aware that the pricing for these seats is a problem and are trying (at least a little) to fix it… but they had a 3 year committmment to the original (astronomical) price (i think its somehow related to people that are season ticket holders for these seats)… that deal ends after this year or next i think….

  • Robin

    I am also perpetually embarrased by those empty seats behind home plate. $325??? No wonder they’re always empty! I second Bilbo’s sentiment… with Metro’s new pricing, trains may start looking as empty as the Nats’ Lexus Presiden Seats. :P

    • michelle

      I almost fell out of my chair when I first saw $325. who pays $325 to go to a baseball game (not counting World Series… etc) I was like what kind of crack are the Nats smoking??

  • mom

    Good article, you should forward this to a Washington Newspaper for the editorial section

  • Rick

    Don’t worry about those seats being empty for the telecast on 7/3; they’re sold out!

    • michelle

      Really?? its top of the 3rd… and the seats just behind home plate that the camera picks up are at least half empty……i guess they are all in the PNC Diamond Club!

  • [...] events seem more and more like something you do only with hotel points from work travel and free tickets from the boss, the TV networks are wise to assume I’ll be watching via tubes at an increased [...]

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