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Mariners send out apology to season ticket holders for raising prices without warning

Oct 24, 2012, 12:16 PM EST

I-am-sorry

Recently the Mariners raised many of their season ticket prices without warning season ticket holders first and yesterday the team issued the following apology:

We apologize. The Mariners organization works hard to have an open line of communication with our Season Ticket Holders, whom we value and consider the backbone of our fan base. However, recently we sent you a season ticket renewal notice without making it clear that there were price increases for many accounts. We had planned to have our account managers speak personally to all our Season Ticket Holders to explain the changes for 2013 and get your feedback. That didn’t happen in a timely manner.

Our goal was to provide you with personalized attention. Unfortunately, we didn’t get it right. We recognize the financial and emotional investment you have made in Mariners Baseball. We are sorry for our miscommunication. And we pledge to do better. Thank you for your support and we hope you will contact your account manager directly with any concerns or questions.

Sincerely,

Bob Aylward, Executive Vice President, Business Operations

Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times writes that some fans were upset about the prices going up, period, but mostly they were annoyed by the lack of notice. And of course the whole thing happening after a third straight losing season probably didn’t help matters either.

  1. suckmyhawk2012 - Oct 24, 2012 at 12:29 PM

    Yeah, let’s pay more to go watch a triple-A team and get cheesy handouts.. I won’t go to another M’s game until they start putting a quality product on the field… Excluding King Felix of course

    • Michael - Oct 24, 2012 at 5:27 PM

      This has been a problem for the Mariners for over 10 years. Despite fielding a poor sports product and assaulting their patrons with ads at every turn, the M’s have been at or near the forefront of price gouging for quite some time, while also outright ignoring STH complaints.

      The M’s pioneered scalping their own tickets, which opened the floodgates to Boston-style scalping in the streets and higher aftermarket ticket prices after the City had to repeal an anti-scalping ordinance to please the Mariners.

      They also began imposing “premium” pricing for some games (i.e., Yankees and Red Sox), and now use “dynamic pricing” despite being half-full almost all the time.

      This all really started after 2001, when management felt fans would just show up regardless of how they were treated (I remember human chains of ushers screaming at fans to exit immediately after games — no joke).

      I finally wrote a long but polite letter, cc’ed to both Howard Lincoln and Chuck Armstrong, regarding their disregard for their paying customers. I received no answer whatsoever, not even from a lackey.

      So I cancelled my season tickets. Now I spend my summers watching the Sounders, whose owners actually meet with their season ticket holders — all who want to show up — and actually care what they have to say.

  2. dcfan4life - Oct 24, 2012 at 12:42 PM

    Do the Mariners even have a strong enough season ticket following to do this successfully? Most ticket prices are raised after teams do really well, not finish last yet again.

    • delchef9 - Oct 25, 2012 at 2:29 AM

      This comming from a Nationals fan??!! Give me a break 1 winning season and they’re preaching to everyone about winning!!! LOL!

  3. rcali - Oct 24, 2012 at 4:11 PM

    Hey, most season tickets are bought by the corporations. If it means laying off a few more people to cover the cost, they’ll do it. For those regular fans, I’m sorry you’ve been treated like this for the product that is on the field.

  4. suckmyhawk2012 - Oct 24, 2012 at 7:09 PM

    Good for you Micheal, I’ve watched the M’s since I was a kid when my dad took us to games in the kingdome. It’s pretty sad what the franchise has become, I’d love to keep the tradition going and take my son to some games but they are so painful to watch and Safeco just feels like a miserable place.

  5. tashkalucy - Oct 24, 2012 at 7:14 PM

    Eric Wedge is doing for the Mariners what he did for the Indians.

    If the mariners would also hire Mark Shaporo and Chris Antonetti, then Mariners fans will find their ticket prices DROP instead of get raised, because fewer and fewer fans – particularly season ticket holders – will buy tickets.

  6. rca26 - Oct 25, 2012 at 11:16 AM

    Easier to ask forgiveness than permission, eh Seattle?

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