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tebman
08-04-2006, 10:16 AM
I searched the board and didn't find a mention of this article (http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/whitesox/cs-060803citysports,1,498219.story?coll=chi-news-hed) in Friday's Tribune. It's a gee-isn't-that-interesting piece on how the White Sox have closed in on the Cubs as "Chicago's Team."

Some harrumphing quotes from John McDonough, Cubs' VP for Broadcasting, Marketing, and Keeper of the Royal Hounds: "The White Sox's success is not at the expense of the Cubs, and there has been absolutely no erosion of our fan base."

Yeah, whatever. I'm just getting a kick out of imagining the War Room at the Tower, where corporate executives are huddled around an illuminated table map showing their weakening positions among their sportswear-clad fan base. Sort of reminiscent of the scene in the first "Star Wars" movie where the generals are meeting inside the nearly-completed Death Star -- "This ship is now the ultimate power in the universe. I say we use it!"

The wheels of justice turn slowly, but they turn.

I want Mags back
08-04-2006, 10:42 AM
10% for the Hawks, what a disgrace

Fenway
08-04-2006, 10:51 AM
I think Brooks is dead on here

The Sox, whose penetration percentages languished in the 30s until last season's surge, believe they started making progress the day in 2003 when U.S. Cellular purchased naming rights to Comiskey Park for $68 million over 23 years. Boyer said the revenue generated from that sponsorship resulted in ballpark improvements that included a roof over the upper deck, more interactive activities for kids and replacing 18,000 blue seats with green ones.


Fans who left 10-15 years ago because of the strike, they didn't like the ballpark, etc have all wandered back. Obviously winning the whole thing helped as well. Most important there is a new generation of White Sox fans who saw them win. Those 10 year olds will be buying tickets in 10 years...the future looks secure for the White Sox.

Railsplitter
08-04-2006, 10:55 AM
Some harrumphing quotes from John McDonough, Cubs' VP for Broadcasting, Marketing, and Keeper of the Royal Hounds: "The White Sox's success is not at the expense of the Cubs, and there has been absolutely no erosion of our fan base."

The Cubs have a Cable TV fan base.

Palehose Pete
08-04-2006, 11:05 AM
In addition to the article stating that the Sox are rising in popularity, the Trib is running a poll that asks where the Sox will be at season's end. The first question is whether the Sox will be in first place in the AL West. That's right, the AL West.

Un-friggin'- believable.

1951Campbell
08-04-2006, 11:09 AM
In addition to the article stating that the Sox are rising in popularity, the Trib is running a poll that asks where the Sox will be at season's end. The first question is whether the Sox will be in first place in the AL West. That's right, the AL West.

Un-friggin'- believable.

Hi, Tribune? 1989 called. They want their divisional alignment back.

jackbrohamer
08-04-2006, 11:38 AM
In addition to the article stating that the Sox are rising in popularity, the Trib is running a poll that asks where the Sox will be at season's end. The first question is whether the Sox will be in first place in the AL West. That's right, the AL West.

You'd think that even the Cubune would know the name of the best division in baseball. If only the Sox were so lucky to be in that godawful division this year instead of chasing Detroit.

MarySwiss
08-04-2006, 11:41 AM
You'd think that even the Cubune would know the name of the best division in baseball. If only the Sox were so lucky to be in that godawful division this year instead of chasing Detroit.

Okay, so what's the over/under on how long it will take them to fix it now that it's been called out on WSI?
I say an hour from now it will read "AL Central."

tebman
08-04-2006, 11:54 AM
In addition to the article stating that the Sox are rising in popularity, the Trib is running a poll that asks where the Sox will be at season's end. The first question is whether the Sox will be in first place in the AL West. That's right, the AL West.

Un-friggin'- believable.

http://img.timeinc.net/time/magazine/archive/covers/1947/1101470609_400.jpg

"That's right, lads! The Tribune will disabuse the raffish White Sox fans of their notions of division alignments. If The Tribune says it is West, then it is West, indeed!"

Johnny Mostil
08-04-2006, 12:06 PM
I searched the board and didn't find a mention of this article (http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/whitesox/cs-060803citysports,1,498219.story?coll=chi-news-hed) in Friday's Tribune. It's a gee-isn't-that-interesting piece on how the White Sox have closed in on the Cubs as "Chicago's Team."

Some harrumphing quotes from John McDonough, Cubs' VP for Broadcasting, Marketing, and Keeper of the Royal Hounds: "The White Sox's success is not at the expense of the Cubs, and there has been absolutely no erosion of our fan base."

Yeah, whatever. I'm just getting a kick out of imagining the War Room at the Tower, where corporate executives are huddled around an illuminated table map showing their weakening positions among their sportswear-clad fan base. Sort of reminiscent of the scene in the first "Star Wars" movie where the generals are meeting inside the nearly-completed Death Star -- "This ship is now the ultimate power in the universe. I say we use it!"

The wheels of justice turn slowly, but they turn.

But could McDonough be right? Have sales of licensed products, broadcast ratings, the a-word, and other things increased for both teams or even stayed the same (i.e., not eroded) for the Cubs while increasing for the Sox? It might not be a zero-sum game . . .

MarySwiss
08-04-2006, 12:08 PM
Okay, so what's the over/under on how long it will take them to fix it now that it's been called out on WSI?
I say an hour from now it will read "AL Central."

Well, that didn't take long. They fixed it already.

Scottzilla
08-04-2006, 12:24 PM
Cubs management is so not worried. They out drew the Sox even though the Sox are defending champs, and the cubs are one of the worst teams in baseball. Not only that but I'm sure they sold alot more $6 old style and pabst.


Sox fans,
Why do you want the team to be popular? I for one love the fact that I can afford to go to sox games. Theres a limited number of seats. More popularity means more demand for tickets, and that means prices will go up.

miker
08-04-2006, 12:26 PM
What are they worried about? They have Iowa and everything downstate that isn't Cardinal red.

After all, Cub fans are the best group of garbage-throwing, baseball-hurling, female-groping, incontinent alcoholic sheep in this city! What company wouldn't love to call that demographic their own?

miker
08-04-2006, 12:28 PM
Why do you want the team to be popular? I for one love the fact that I can afford to go to sox games. Theres a limited number of seats. More popularity means more demand for tickets, and that means prices will go up.
Have you been to a home game this year? The string of sell outs indicates that the White Sox are enjoying a little more popularity than usual...

tebman
08-04-2006, 12:28 PM
But could McDonough be right? Have sales of licensed products, broadcast ratings, the a-word, and other things increased for both teams or even stayed the same (i.e., not eroded) for the Cubs while increasing for the Sox? It might not be a zero-sum game . . .
Sure, that's probably true. As we all know, the Hydra monster that is the Tribune/Cubs/WGN/Chicago Magazine/etc. doesn't sell baseball -- they sell the "Wrigley Field Experience," which is supposed to have healing powers like the old Hot Springs health spas were claimed to have. As long as they keep selling that, people will come to see what all the fuss is about.

But part of their narrative has been that Cubs=good and Sox=bad, and these trends make it difficult for them to sell that line. They'll have a new marketing strategy after the season, and you can bet the farm it'll have everything to do with the ballpark and little to do with baseball.

What's always irked me is that they're phonies. They've created a fiction that a crumbling, obsolete public venue is somehow vested with a quality that makes it worth paying excessive prices and enduring the aggravation of limited access. The baseball product is a bumbling afterthought.

The White Sox have earned our affection through persistence and hard work. I'm one of those who appreciates that.

ewokpelts
08-04-2006, 12:33 PM
I love how mcdonough keeps trumping the attendance issue.
But he seems to forget pointing out that : a. the sox do not sell standing room tickets for games sold out in advance(since they are good neighbors)
b. the sox REDUCED capacity in the last 3 years
and c. the cubs ADDED capacity, and in the areas most likely to sell out(the bleachers).

And let's not forget that the sox are the ONLY major leage team in town that has an active youth skills initiative(bulls/sox academy), the only one that rewards kids for good grades/perfect attendance with FREE tickets(which do not count towards the attendance figures), the only team with a kids club, and a free version to boot! with FREE tickets(again, does not count towards attendance), teh only team that rewards group leaders with FREE tickets, teh only one that rewards season ticket holder, group leaders, and suite holders, with a private party on field, the only team that sends players out to free autograph events(like the taste), the only one that lets fans SAVE money by tailgating in thier parking lots(yes, the cubs DO have a few parking lots).
And the sox dont rip off thier own fans with a "ticket broker" that's owned by the team's corporate parent.

Gene

p.s. and if you noticed, the only games that didnt draw 35,000 plus were during april, which is usually wet and cold, and also featured teh sox playing bad teams......

bryPt
08-04-2006, 01:51 PM
If You See The Poll That Says Al West, Get A Screen Capture Of It Please, We Need A Copy Of That!

spiffie
08-04-2006, 01:54 PM
But could McDonough be right? Have sales of licensed products, broadcast ratings, the a-word, and other things increased for both teams or even stayed the same (i.e., not eroded) for the Cubs while increasing for the Sox? It might not be a zero-sum game . . .
According to the Trib about a month or so ago ratings for the Cubs have dropped almost 50% since 2003, while Sox ratings have jumped about the same number. The Cubs still have higher ratings, but the gap has gone down significantly.

batmanZoSo
08-04-2006, 02:34 PM
Cubs management is so not worried. They out drew the Sox even though the Sox are defending champs, and the cubs are one of the worst teams in baseball. Not only that but I'm sure they sold alot more $6 old style and pabst.


Sox fans,
Why do you want the team to be popular? I for one love the fact that I can afford to go to sox games. Theres a limited number of seats. More popularity means more demand for tickets, and that means prices will go up.

Uh...because more tickets sold equals more money for better players on the field.

cheeses_h_rice
08-04-2006, 02:44 PM
Cubs management is so not worried. They out drew the Sox even though the Sox are defending champs, and the cubs are one of the worst teams in baseball. Not only that but I'm sure they sold alot more $6 old style and pabst.
.
The reason the Cubs can still outdraw the Sox comes down to a few factors:

1. Season ticket base. The Cubs' is huge. Year after year they account for (I'm guessing) 25,000 sold seats per game. Come day 1 of the season, they already have roughly 2 million seats sold. This won't change for the foreseeable future, I don't think -- too many corporations and families with longstanding ties to their seats to give them up and have to start over from scratch if the Cubs ever get good again.

2. Limited tickets for non-season ticket holders, a somewhat small park that is old, "quaint" and considered a major tourist attraction for yahoos all around the country. This won't change that much, but you might start to see smaller crowds when the weather isn't that great in April/May/Sept. But, if the Cubs ever build a new park in the suburbs with higher capacity, the draw of Wrigley goes away, and with MORE tickets available, it becomes much less of a "must have" seat, and paradoxically you'd see much smaller crowds when the team isn't good. Wrigley Field will not be torn down any time soon -- Cubune brass knows they have the goose that laid the golden egg.

At this point, I don't think there's anything the Cubs could rightly do to make their fans go away, and this year is a testament to that. Unless the Sox were to rip off a string of 4-5 AL championships or something and the Cubs continued to really, really suck and disappoint, I just don't see the yokels, Chads and Trixies staying away. All the Sox can do is increase their own numbers and to hell with what happens on the north side.

FielderJones
08-04-2006, 02:53 PM
Some good thoughts on this subject from the good people over at Cubune Watch (http://www.cubune.com/).

Fenway
08-04-2006, 03:02 PM
Some good thoughts on this subject from the good people over at Cubune Watch (http://www.cubune.com/).

Only one team in Chicago has ever drawn 1.75 million fans on a single day: The Chicago White Sox.:tongue:

MarySwiss
08-04-2006, 03:10 PM
Only one team in Chicago has ever drawn 1.75 million fans on a single day: The Chicago White Sox.
Love it! This should become the official answer whenever any Cub fan starts with that attendance crap.

bryPt
08-04-2006, 03:47 PM
Jeff nailed that, I emailed him telling him that it was brilliant. So brilliant, made it my signature!

ws05champs
08-04-2006, 06:56 PM
And let's not forget that the sox are the ONLY major leage team in town that has an active youth skills initiative(bulls/sox academy), the only one that rewards kids for good grades/perfect attendance with FREE tickets(which do not count towards the attendance figures), the only team with a kids club, and a free version to boot! with FREE tickets(again, does not count towards attendance), teh only team that rewards group leaders with FREE tickets, teh only one that rewards season ticket holder, group leaders, and suite holders, with a private party on field, the only team that sends players out to free autograph events(like the taste), the only one that lets fans SAVE money by tailgating in thier parking lots(yes, the cubs DO have a few parking lots)

This type of marketing really pays off in 3-7 years. With this in mind the Urinal should be the equivalent to a ghost town by 2013.

FielderJones
08-04-2006, 11:23 PM
This type of marketing really pays off in 3-7 years. With this in mind the Urinal should be the equivalent to a ghost town by 2013.

Don't underestimate the power of a local media monopoly. There would have to be some serious trust-busting, on par with Teddy Roosevelt, to turn the Urinal into a ghost town.

Dan H
08-05-2006, 08:56 AM
I don't care about Cubs attendance or the popularity of the team. If those fans want to go see home runs drop into a basket that was put in place to keep them from interfering with the game, fine by me.

The Sox fan base was eroding. However, the team now has an excellent chance to rebuild a base that can outlast anything the Cubs do. A winning tradition is better than having self-centered celebrities in the booth every home game.

SoxandtheCityTee
08-05-2006, 10:05 AM
Wrigley Field will not be torn down any time soon -- Cubune brass knows they have the goose that laid the golden egg.

In addition to which, it is landmarked.

http://egov.cityofchicago.org/city/webportal/portalContentItemAction.do?BV_SessionID=@@@@155518 5846.1154786417@@@@&BV_EngineID=ccceaddihjfmgdfcefecelldffhdfgn.0&contentOID=536901232&contenTypeName=COC_EDITORIAL&topChannelName=HomePage

SouthSide_HitMen
08-05-2006, 12:17 PM
But, if the Cubs ever build a new park in the suburbs with higher capacity, the draw of Wrigley goes away, and with MORE tickets available, it becomes much less of a "must have" seat, and paradoxically you'd see much smaller crowds when the team isn't good. Wrigley Field will not be torn down any time soon -- Cubune brass knows they have the goose that laid the golden egg.

It won't be torn down for decades. Much of the fans who flock there live within 5 miles of the beer garden.

They couldn't build a stadium in say Schaumburg as they would draw about 15,000 during most games during years like this. If / when Wrigley is replaced they will rebuild it at the original site since no other land will be available in that area and the suburbs would be a death sentence for the franchise.

I do expect the automatic preseason sellouts for all but the Saturday games to be a thing of the past - possibly in 2007. I think many scalpers are going to hold off on tickets other than bleachers and season ticket field / club box seats as well. Do not underestimate the volume of tickets bought by scalpers over the past decade +. They have been eating a lot of tickets over the past two seasons and they are not stupid.

ewokpelts
08-05-2006, 05:50 PM
In addition to which, it is landmarked.

http://egov.cityofchicago.org/city/webportal/portalContentItemAction.do?BV_SessionID=@@@@155518 5846.1154786417@@@@&BV_EngineID=ccceaddihjfmgdfcefecelldffhdfgn.0&contentOID=536901232&contenTypeName=COC_EDITORIAL&topChannelName=HomePageyeah, but they can pretty much tear almost everything down and it'll still be considered a landmark by the terms of the city's deal with the cubs....

jumpmonger23
08-05-2006, 11:27 PM
But could McDonough be right? Have sales of licensed products, broadcast ratings, the a-word, and other things increased for both teams or even stayed the same (i.e., not eroded) for the Cubs while increasing for the Sox? It might not be a zero-sum game . . .

I don't know about overall, but my company does distribution for sox/cubs items at a chicagoland chain store. Last year, sales (actual retail numbers) we about 2/3 to 1/3 in favor of the cubs.

This year its running about 50/50 cubs/sox in terms of raw sales. Don't know if its just sox pride running higher, cubs converts, etc, but that data would tend to confirm what the article said.

BTW...first post, nice to meet you all!

Hitmen77
08-06-2006, 12:11 AM
I think Brooks is dead on here



Fans who left 10-15 years ago because of the strike, they didn't like the ballpark, etc have all wandered back. Obviously winning the whole thing helped as well. Most important there is a new generation of White Sox fans who saw them win. Those 10 year olds will be buying tickets in 10 years...the future looks secure for the White Sox.

The Cell renovations turned out to be pretty much perfectly timed to be finished just before the Sox won it all and brought a huge influx of people to the park.

The last time there was a huge influx of people to Sox games was when New Comiskey opened in the early 90s. In general, people weren't impressed with the bland design, etc. and once the newness of the park wore off and the team's on-the-field performance sagged, there was nothing to bring people back to the park.

Now winning has brought tons of potential new fans to the park and people are impressed with how great the park looks, families love how there are amenities like Fundamentals, and people who venture west of the park are pleasantly surprised at how revitalized the area is becoming. Winning isn't going to last forever - but now when the lean years come, the Sox will have really boosted their fan base and will won over new fans who enjoy the atmosphere at the Cell.

As far as the debate of how Sox fortunes affect the Cubs fortunes in terms of market share, it should be no surprise to anyone that the Cubs still hold a huge fanbase. People who have already been won over to the dark side (Cubs) over the last 2 decades are entrenched in that fandom and will never switch. But, the Cubs honeymoon may not last forever. We're already seeing chinks in Wrigley's "armor". People who don't live in or near Wrigleyville are seeing that Sox Park is more convenient, more accessible, more fan friendly, and more family friendly.

If the Sox can manage a good run of successive playoff appearances coupled with continued incompetance by the Cubs over the next few years, then the Tribune should start to worry about market share erosion.

Hitmen77
08-06-2006, 12:28 AM
I don't know about overall, but my company does distribution for sox/cubs items at a chicagoland chain store. Last year, sales (actual retail numbers) we about 2/3 to 1/3 in favor of the cubs.

This year its running about 50/50 cubs/sox in terms of raw sales. Don't know if its just sox pride running higher, cubs converts, etc, but that data would tend to confirm what the article said.

BTW...first post, nice to meet you all!

:welcome:

STRETCH!!!
08-06-2006, 12:45 AM
Polls of this sort are always a bit suspect in my mind.

It seems that they asked whether or not a person had watched or listenned to a Sox, Hawks, etc. broadcast in the last year, which I assume means the last 12 months.

The Sox were in the World Series. Even the most casual sports fan in the city of Chicago had to have been the least bit interested and must have watched a bit of the World Series, don't you think? Is the World Series a Sox telecast? The Sox played in it. So, I guess that the numbers quoted in the article are suspicious.

The Sox fan base definitely got a good shot in the arm last year. I don't think it hurt the Cubs. If the Cubs, God Forbid, ever have a good team, it won't hurt the Sox either, especially if the Sox continue to be competitive. Both franchises are over 100 years old and the city has supported both teams for a long time. Both franchises are healthy. It doesn't really bother me that the Cubs are "more popular" on certain measures; quite honestly, I simply get sick of hearing about it. It is an old, tired story.

spiffie
08-07-2006, 11:17 AM
I do expect the automatic preseason sellouts for all but the Saturday games to be a thing of the past - possibly in 2007. I think many scalpers are going to hold off on tickets other than bleachers and season ticket field / club box seats as well. Do not underestimate the volume of tickets bought by scalpers over the past decade +. They have been eating a lot of tickets over the past two seasons and they are not stupid.
It's not just scalpers, but I know TONS of people who would go online the day they opened sales and just pick up some tickets and then immediately be on Craig's List or Stubhub dumping them. I know in 2005 I bought a bunch of games that I figured would sell (Cards games, bleachers on Fridays/Saturdays) and sold all of them. Ended up paying for my Sox playoff tickets that way :cool: . But next year I'm not going to be buying anything but my Crosstown games for myself and maybe some Cards tickets to sell. The market is just not there.

Scottiehaswheels
08-07-2006, 11:41 AM
It's not just scalpers, but I know TONS of people who would go online the day they opened sales and just pick up some tickets and then immediately be on Craig's List or Stubhub dumping them. I know in 2005 I bought a bunch of games that I figured would sell (Cards games, bleachers on Fridays/Saturdays) and sold all of them. Ended up paying for my Sox playoff tickets that way :cool: . But next year I'm not going to be buying anything but my Crosstown games for myself and maybe some Cards tickets to sell. The market is just not there.Tell me about it.. This is my first year trying to flip Cubs tix... I couldn't sell the crosstown series for the life of me... ended up eating 6-7 tix

ewokpelts
08-07-2006, 12:30 PM
Tell me about it.. This is my first year trying to flip Cubs tix... I couldn't sell the crosstown series for the life of me... ended up eating 6-7 tixand you DIDNT try selling them here? at least you would have made yor money back...

Scottiehaswheels
08-07-2006, 12:34 PM
and you DIDNT try selling them here? at least you would have made yor money back...Honestly I really don't like selling tix here unless I have no other real option... I know it sounds bad but I get tired of the PM's offering me $1 for the lot... Complete waste of my time... Plus I got banned once for looking at the wrong tix and posting the wrong price... Had the right section on my tix but looked at the wrong date... I was one section over on the other date at cincy... price difference of $5.. oops

vegyrex
08-07-2006, 04:17 PM
The last time there was a huge influx of people to Sox games was when New Comiskey opened in the early 90s. In general, people weren't impressed with the bland design, etc. and once the newness of the park wore off and the team's on-the-field performance sagged, there was nothing to bring people back to the park.



The strike in '94 did a lot to ruin what momentum the Sox had back then. If I'm not mistaken the Sox were the only team not to regain the attendance they had before the strike. The white flag trade didn't help matters any.