By Alfred Branch, Jr.
It looks like Ticketmaster is no longer handling any ticketing for the reigning American League champion Detroit Tigers.
According to the website Detroittigersweblog.com, fans seeking spring training tickets have been steered to Tickets.com through the Major League Baseball site, MLB.com, which is operated by the league’s Internet and interactive division Major League Baseball Advanced Media, L.P. Tickets.com was acquired by MLB two years ago, and published reports say that MLB might stop using Ticketmaster altogether once individual team contracts with Ticketmaster expire.
Tickets for individual regular season games are slated to go on sale March 3, and fans will have three alternatives to buy tickets, at Tigers.com, the Comerica Park ticket office or by phone.
At press time, neither Ticketmaster nor the Tigers returned calls requesting information on the matter. One Detroit area ticket broker, who was unaware of the move away from Ticketmaster, said she wasn’t surprised. “I know a lot of sports teams are looking at using Tickets.com or other sites,” she said.
A search Wednesday on the Ticketmaster.com website for tickets to upcoming Major League Baseball games turned up information that the company is offering some tickets at the home ballparks of 9 of the 30 pro teams, the New York Yankees, Chicago White Sox, Cleveland Indians, Florida Marlins, Tampa Bay Devil Rays, Baltimore Orioles, Los Angeles Dodgers, Seattle Mariners and the Houston Astros. The available ticketing information for those teams was only through June; Ticketmaster may offer games for other teams not listed because information has not yet gone online.
Some Tigers fans appeared happy about the move away from Ticketmaster. On the Detroittigersweblog.com site, a respondent going by the name Eric Kent said he supported the change. “I ordered some tickets last weekend to the Tigers-Twins game at the [Metrodome] in May. They used the same process, as I had to register an account with MLB.com. I paid $4 per ticket in service charges, as [four] $29 tickets cost $132.00 total. I’ve never really been a big fan of Ticketmaster…so I don’t mind the switch.”