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Dodgers: Bill Shaikin Breaks Down the Cost of Attending a Dodger Game

Study shows that sporting events in LA are getting too expensive for a family of four.



Almost every fan remembers their first Dodger game, the unforgettable atmosphere and excitement that surrounded going to the game. Many of us were young children when our early experiences at Chavez Ravine hooked us for life, but according to Bill Shaikin of the LA Times, that may no longer be a possibility for kids of future generations.

Shaikin, along with a study conducted by Team Marketing Report, found that families are being increasingly priced out of professional sporting events.

“The median income for a family of four in Los Angeles County is $78,673, according to the USC Price Center for Social Innovation,” Shaikin wrote. “After accounting for the costs of housing, child care, health care, food, transportation and taxes, that family would be left with $3,413 in discretionary income for the year, $284 per month.”

With this in mind, Shaikin and the Price Center pointed out that a “reasonable” price for a family of four to attend a sporting event would be $100, which currently only the Angels offer a package under that price point. Other LA area teams, including teams in Orange County, either offer limited tickets the day of a game or offer family packages above the $100 mark.

While Dodger tickets are relatively cheap compared to other LA area teams, their average ticket price ($43) is above the “fan cost index” — the total cost of four tickets, four hot dogs, four sodas, two beers, two hats, and parking — of $33.

Parking alone at Dodger Stadium will set you back at least $25, not to mention the price of a Dodger dog. With the latest $100 million renovation being completed by Opening Day, expect those prices to climb up even more.

Dodger games are great places to be, it’s called Blue Heaven on Earth for a reason, but are we reaching the point to where a family is priced out Chavez Ravine?

NEXT: Dodger Stadium Cosmetics Are Nice, but a Team Overhaul is Nicer

Written by Andres Soto

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  1. I think the emergence of corporate ownership will eventually hurt the sport. Guggenheim doesn’t care close to as much about winning a World Series as they do about profit. Unless the lack of winning affects attendance don’t expect them to increase payroll. I took my entire family of 5 to many Dodger games when they were young. But, much has changed in the time since Guggenheim purchased the team. Traffic around the LA area has worsened, and many didn’t think that was possible. This causes many families not to venture out as often. Now, ticket prices are systematically being increased. Dodgers plan to run the team similar to the Tampa Bay Rays using the moneyball approach. I love my Dodgers, but I no longer feel the same. Guggenheim is a business and they only really care about profits. This has caused me to rethink the relationship. Now, I will focus on my revenue. That means I’ll watch them on tv if possible and not visit the stadium close to as much. Lack of Dodger games on TV is another way Dodgers are alienating the next generation. If they have no interaction with the team on tv like I did, they won’t become attached.

    • I suggest a review of player salaries.
      Geritt Cole, who so many screamed that we must get at any cost, asked for and got 36M a year for 9 years.
      LA’s over rated Kenley Jensen gets 20M a year.
      It’s not always about ‘evil corporations’.

      Also look at prices for NBA & NFL games. Astronomical.

      Happy New Year.

  2. True in every way, but you understand Guggenheim does not care. Since the Time Warner deal, they already have eight-billion, so if no one watches, they still have eight-billion. Tickets area small fraction, since marketing makes up any differences. If no one buys a ticket, season ticket holders and brokets make up a huge amount. Those tickets are already sold, so Guggenheim doesn’t care about those seats.
    The only one that would feel any lose would be McCourt, as he still owns the parking lots.

    • Not entirely true. Unsold tickets are being resold by the Guggenheim groups in partnership with these brokers

  3. ” their average ticket price ($43) is above the “fan cost index” — the total cost of four tickets, four hot dogs, four sodas, two beers, two hats, and parking — of $33.” Do you think we are that stupid to believe this crap. The total per person cost would approximately be:
    Ticket $43 x 4 = 172
    Hot Dog: $8 x 4= 32
    Soda $8 x 4 = 32
    Beer $12 x 2= 24
    Hat $25 x 2 = 50
    Parking $25
    Gas $10
    Grand Total = $345
    As you can see by the above break down the cost see one Dodger game for an average income family exceeds the discretionary income of $284 per month by $61. Now you know why not many average income families attend Dodger games.

    • Good analysis, William!!!! I have always been amazed that the Blue have been able to set MLB attendance records considering the costs involved. It would be nice if we could reward all the fans with a WS championship in 2020. Go Blue!!!

    • Another reason why Guggenheim has no desire to show the Dodgers on local TV. If you don’t go to the games, you don’t see them. That’s why the Dodgers have little desire to have a good transportation system to get to the game. A massive line to get on a bus is not what you’d call MLB caliber. Both have Guggenheim and McCourt winning. If you want to see the Dodgers, you have to go to the stadium and park there. There is no rush to resolve the local TV issue because having them on local TV cuts into their ticket and parking profits. Thank you KTLA for the ten games we get to see on TV!!!

  4. I make a decent living and I’ve felt the cost of attending a major sporting event has spiraled out of control a couple DECADES ago!!!
    Break it down (last season’s {2019} prices!): [email protected]/ea (cheap seats), 4-Dodger dogs (you only get 1)@$7/ea, [email protected]$7/ea, [email protected]$38/ea and [email protected]$20= $324!
    How many games can a family of 4 attend per year??

    But teams like the Dodgers are willing to shell out $350 MILLION for a player like Gerritt Cole or Manny Machado. That money, from what I understand, comes from the lucrative TV broadcast deals.

    My point is simply this: Do teams like the Dodgers pass those funds down to the fans? Instead of over-paying “talent” that doesn’t yield a World Series Title?

  5. I used to go to 10-15 games a year. Last year I went to 3. Might even do less this year. Not on TV. Expensive to go to a game. I wonder how many kids get interested in other sports over baseball. There used to be the Saturday game of the week. Now there is the Saturday Premier League soccer game every Saturday. Used to be Sunday road games for the Dodges and Angels. Now nothing.

    When they went on strike, I was doing other things, Survived quite well. Out of sight. Out of mind.

    • ” I wonder how many kids get interested in other sports over baseball.”

      Try going to a NBA or NFL game.
      ‘Reasonable price’?
      NO WAY.

  6. Professional sports salaries & prices to attend the games are way out of control! Agree with comments on the Guggenheim group. Probably will have to take another strike & attendance to tank for all of baseball after it to hopefully bring back some common sense! Sports is in the entertainment industry & if there are no ticket sales & the seats are empty there isn’t any justification for 100 million dollar plus players or billionaire owners.

  7. Get real here:
    – Yearly pay to Kenley Jansen, for just one example, of ca $20,000,000, that’s TWENTY MILLION DOLLARS A YEAR, just might have something to do with it.
    – And many here complain that the Dodgers didn’t sign Gerritt Cole, who demanded and now gets $36,000,000 / $36 MILLION A YEAR FOR NINE YEARS.
    – You cant have it both ways, guys.

  8. Makes sense why Manfred wants to kill less expensive minor league parks off. He may be afraid of fans going to more affordable games with more hustle and less analytics.

  9. break it down this was, going to use round numbers for simplicity sake:

    Assume 4M attendance per season. Again round nunbers.

    Now a $20M salary breaks down to $5 per ticket per game. Further it’s $2.50/ticket.

    $200M payroll works out as $50 per ticket. So to simply cover team salary (not including the whatever millions Roberts makes or other staff & overhead. Adding in per game overhead of at least another $20/ticket. Seems a team with a $200M payroll needs, at a rough estimate, $70-$100/seat. And yes those $450/game box seat tickets skew that number downward, but in general as a business perspective us fans have screwed ourselves buying into today’s mega salaries.

    What was the total revenue MLB took in for 2019? Around $7-$8 BILLION as i read the other day. It’s the entire league making this happen.

    NBA & NFL have been beyond expensive for a few decades and MLB has been catching up.

    I remember the Dodgers had a family deal in the Pavillion (under McCourtCo.. ug) That was about $20 a ticket including all you could eat soda, hotdogs and something else i forget. It was a good deal despite a few who acted like fools in that section.

    Can’t find a single article about MLB which doesn’t focus more in MONEY over focusing in, ya know…. the actual sport..

    Owners all over the league ramble on about the “best fan experience”… hint, when corp. talking heads/marketing wonks make noise… pucker up & hide your wallet.

    • oops, i based the numbers on a while 16w games but they still hold true idea wise. Numbers offset by whatever road revenue is these days. The overhead to cover salaries alone is still roughly the same… kinda. sorry fir hitting send too soon.

  10. Rancho Cucamonga Quakes, the Dodger High A, affiliate, is inexpensive as to tickets. Food menu is somewhat high as is their merchandise. Go to get food and figure on missing two innings. Parking is reasonable. Staff is friendly and accommodating.
    Seating actually let’s you see the players. Rehab assignments lets you see big league players and get autographs.
    “Eric” in ticket sales is the man to see

  11. Use your head. Instead of three gallons of premium and parking, I ride the Metro and the free shuttle. I like the top deck and refuse to pay eight bucks for a beer. I’ve worn the same cap and jacket for several years.

  12. Expect Angel prices to go up after signing guys like Rendon. His contract is more than twice the cost of the Dodger stadium renovation. With that said I wish the Dodgers had got Rendon even if ticket prices went up.

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