Friday, May 23, 2008


This being the unofficial start to the summer, we’re cleaning the barbeque grills, packing away the winter clothes (though it might snow in August this year, so think about that) and praying that we don’t have to work any more overtime. Yet, we’re also thinking about hitting the track (consistently), shooting some hoops and taking in a few baseball games.

Well, we might be a little more judicious about going to baseball games this year if we have to drive to the ballpark with gas being $4.00 per gallon.

In today’s Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Tim Tucker’s article discussed how the Braves are considering – just considering – promotions with some gas retailers that involve gas card giveaways with game tickets. Baseball teams around the league will hit their peak attendance starting this weekend until either mid-August or the teams are no longer in contention (whichever comes first). Much of the attendance comes from out-of-towners within the metropolitan area and in many cases, out-of-state fans.

The Braves are one of the “regional” teams in Major League Baseball, meaning that their following stretches far beyond the immediate Atlanta area. As you can see from this territorial map [credit to Dave Werr ( via Yahoo! Sports columnist Jeff Passan], the Braves are the “home” team in four southern states while sharing several markets in Tennessee and North Carolina. Just five of the remaining 29 teams (Boston, Seattle, Colorado, Kansas City and Minnesota) can claim to be the “home” team for at least 300 miles while overlapping into other markets.

Essentially, if you and a friend or family member want to attend a Mariners game and you live around 175 miles away in Portland, Oregon – let alone nearby Tacoma – you may rethink about filling up the gas tank.

So for those of us who are planning to attend games this year, do you think your favorite team would follow suit with the Braves (because you know they should)? Also, would this be a good incentive to see another team outside of your local area?

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