Lighthall: Rays Make Most Affordable Ticket More Affordable

By: Jim Lighthall

With just under 50 games to go in the regular season, the Tampa Bay Rays are right in the thick of another playoff chase. The amazing part? The Rays are doing it with the third-lowest payroll in Major League Baseball and a payroll that’s 1/3 the size of AL East brethren Boston and 1/5 that of the Yankees.

Say what you want about what the Rays are doing on the field. I love what they’re doing off the field.

Attendance has been a hot topic in this market for a long time. And getting people into Tropicana Field has been a difficult task. And despite some pretty attractive ticket options throughout this season, the Rays are making an August push to guarantee that lack of support won’t be an issue down the stretch.

A $2 Kid’s Night promotion last week worked on my family and put over 25,000 fans in the seats for an otherwise lackluster Wednesday night matchup against Arizona. Giveaways on the following Saturday and Sunday versus the Giants netted the Rays their largest three-game home series since April of 2012.

But do these big crowds really translate into wins? The Rays are banking on it. Through the end of the season, Tampa Bay is offering up …

* 1,000 lower level seats each game for less than $10

* buy two get two free on outfield seats on Tuesdays

* another $2 Kid’s Night on August 14 vs. Seattle

According to the Tampa Bay Times, the Rays have won 75-percent of their games since 2008 when over 30,000 fans squeeze into the Trop.

Hey Stu Sternberg … your “One More Game” campaign worked. I’ll be taking my family back to see more baseball. After all, i think the Rays are doing their part: winning games and making them even more affordable in the process. I’m going to do my part by being one of those 30,000.

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