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Ticket sales on upswing


moneyThe first across-the-board price hike in a decade so far has not slowed Pirates ticket sales. The team already has sold a higher equivalent of full-season plans than it did a year ago. The Pirates have been hawking season-ticket plans since last fall; single-game tickets went on sale about six weeks ago at PirateFest. After last season, the average price of a ticket increased from $15.30 to $16.11. Season tickets for lower infield box seats went up by $4 per game. The cost of a seat behind the dugouts went up $10 to $45.

“Our fans’ renewed excitement for Pirates baseball has resulted in solid sales so far this winter,” President Frank Coonelly said via email. “Renewals are pacing well but new sales are driving the growth as they are already well ahead of where we ended 2011. The full-season value plans have been particularly popular and we are nearly sold out of value plans (limited to 500 in each price category) in three of the value-plan price categories. Individual sales and group sales are also trending well, despite the fact that the is no Red Sox series (at PNC Park) this year. The staff has much work left to do in order to meet our goals for 2012, but it is off to a solid start.”

We’ll have to take his word for it. As usual, Coonelly provided no specific data to support his statement, as the Pirates do not release their ticket information. Chief marketing officer Lou DePaoli deferred questions about ticket sales to Coonelly.

»»» Here’s an interesting crystal ball look at the Pirates’ 2013 payroll by Tim Williams of Pirates Prospects. BTW, if you have more than a passing interest in the ballclub’s minor leaguers, you might want to pick up Tim’s 2012 Prospect Guide.

»»» The Pirates have not yet officially announced it, but they’ve signed pitcher Daniel Cabrerra to a minor league deal with a spring training invite. The 30-year-old righty had a couple of OK seasons with the Orioles, but hasn’t started a game in the majors since 2009.

»»» And, in case you missed it, another ex-Pirate has signed with a NL Central team. Lefty Zach Duke got a minor league deal and spring training invitation from the Astros.



  1. Ryan(Nor-Cal Stlrfanrc) says:

    I would’ve taken Zach back on a minor league deal.

  2. Jay Walker says:

    Who says Pittsburgh fans are sophisticated? Anyone who supports the Pirates especially in this economy is pretty dumb if you ask me.

  3. Dejan Shortpants says:

    The Pirates don’t sell baseball. They sell entertainment. What’s next — strippers between innings?

  4. Ron says:

    Music to Nutting’s ears!

  5. Candy says:

    How ’bout pre-game midget softball with Huntington as the designated pitcher for both teams?

  6. Chuck says:

    The Pirates are going to set new records this year (most consecutive losing seasons) so I am pretty excited about the 2012 season.

  7. The Gonsk says:

    I just wish the Pirates would pack up and leave. They’re a civic embarrassment. Who needs ‘em?

  8. John Perrotgut says:

    Who says Bob Nutting isn’t a genius?

  9. Cactus Jack says:

    I just want to puke to think that we helped turn Huntington into a millionaire do-nothing.

  10. Jay Walker says:

    Hey, you don’t think a Rod Barajas can turn this Pirate ship around?

  11. Hannah says:

    J-Walk: LMAO.

  12. Backdoor Man says:

    Hey, J-Walk, don’t forget a Clint Barmes!

  13. Harry Paratestes says:

    Gonsk: Couldn’t agree more. Blow up PNC and build a riverfront part that more of us could use and enjoy.

  14. Dejan Shortpants says:

    Sorry, Rob, but it doesn’t matter which reporter covers which team. They’re all Bud Selig robots. I’ve never read any compelling analysis at that site. It’s good for stats and nothing else.

  15. Ralph says:

    Only in Pittsburgh can a guy with a bad body and even worse attitude keep his job. That would be Fat Pedro, of course.

  16. Eddie Spaghetti says:

    You’re spot on, Dejan.

  17. I Hate MLB says:

    I see a Reds-Cardinals battle for first place in the division. Cubs will finish third, Brewers fourth. Astros and Bucs will bring up the rear again.

  18. Michael says:

    Sanchez is an idiot, not to mention overrated. Another wasted draft pick.

  19. The Big E says:

    Alvarez and Sanchez have no regard for team leadership. We need a proven GM who can evaluate talent and command the respect of his players.

  20. Jay Walker says:

    If MLB insists on these rules, then there’s no hope for this franchise (or other mid-market types). My suggestion: Trade the Buccos for an NBA team.

  21. Dejan Shortpants says:

    Nice racket MLB has here, isn’t it?

  22. Derek says:

    I’d love to see an NBA team here. When do we make the trade?

  23. Gabriel says:

    Boy, I bet Rob can’t wait to begin another year of exciting Bucs baseball!

  24. Chris says:

    Oh God forbid people actually buy Pirates tickets. Why don’t you all calm down, the season hasn’t even started. They were fun to watch last year for the first 3 months and they have some exciting players. Even with the ticket price increase, seeing players like Mccutchen in the most beautiful ballpark in the country is still the best bargain in the city. The Pirates may be embarrassing, but I’m more embarrassed by fans like you.

  25. Charles says:

    Chris, you’re an idiot for lack of another word that can be used here.

  26. Ron says:

    #24. We are fans that actually care about winning instead of “enjoying a day at the ballpark”. We are smart enough to know that Nutting’s #1 goal as our owner is to make money for himself. He has not shown any interest in building a winning team. You even said it yourself the Pirates are an embarresment. I am all for supporting the team, but when the owner cares only about lining his pockets, I can support them without spending any money to do so.

  27. Victor says:

    Ron: Here’s the problem — the Pirates aren’t alone here. For the most part, the small markets are content to make money, keep their mouths shut and allow the big fish to compete for the championships. If they wanted a different system, they would have held out for one.

  28. Da Mayor says:

    Chris, so we’re supposed to be content pay a price increase to watch a few good players in a great ballpark? Didn’t this use to be the City of Champions?

  29. TAG says:

    Same pathetic Nutting product!!!!!! Sell the BUCS Bob!!!! We in Da Burgh deserve better than what your willing to put out. Stick to the newspaper business. It seems to be something you enjoy and are good at.

  30. TAG says:

    We all need to make a stand and quit buying tickets to this Nutting Minor League Show. Watch the games on TV and have the enjoyment of watching Walk, Blass, Brown and Wehner PRETEND they are excited about the game. Bob Prince would be speachless over the state of things under this regime.

  31. Dana says:

    If you were an established free agent starter, would you pitch for this team with this offense and this track record? Duh.

  32. The Gonsk says:

    Excuse me, but wasn’t Clint Hurdle, ol’ Mr. Big Shot himself, supposed to attract quality free agents here? Yeah, right.

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