Whether for the preseason, regular season or postseason, tickets to see the four major pro sports teams in Boston remain red-hot.
Tickets to the New England Patriots’ AFC semifinal game Sunday, January 16 are officially sold out. A small amount of tickets went on sale via Ticketmaster.com last Friday, January 7, and were likely long gone even before the Patriots’ bitter rival, the New York Jets, set up a third meeting of the season between the teams by edging the Indianapolis Colts, 17-16, in a wild card game Saturday, January 8.
Not surprisingly, demand for Patriots-Jets tickets on the secondary market is high. As of this morning, Tuesday, January 11, StubHub.com had 1,890 tickets to the game, the cheapest of which was a seat in Upper Corner 318, high above the east end zone, listed for $179. That seat goes for $89 during the regular season. The lowest-priced seats offered at Tickemaster.com went for $150 apiece.
In baseball, meanwhile, pitchers and catchers are still a little more than a month away from reporting to spring training, but Red Sox fans excited about the team’s flurry of activity this winter are already snapping up tickets for the exhibition games played in Fort Myers, FL.
The Red Sox, who signed free agent Carl Crawford and acquired superstar first baseman Adrian Gonzalez from the San Diego Padres, sold more than 29,000 Grapefruit League tickets during the first day of sales Saturday, January 8. The News-Times newspaper in Fort Myers reported that just standing room only tickets remain for the games against the Yankees Monday, March 14 and the Mets Thursday, March 17.
The Saturday sales fell less than 3,000 shy of the single-day record set prior to the 2007 season, which was also the last time the Red Sox made a series of off-season splashes as well as the season in which the Sox last won the World Series. In addition, almost 2,450 of the tickets sold Saturday were purchased at the Sox’ spring training home, City of Palms Park, which marked the highest single day for ticket window sales in six years.
The paucity of tickets at Fenway Park, where the Red Sox have sold out 631 straight games dating back to 2003, as well as the lure of February and March in Florida have also allowed the Sox to fashion an impressive sellout streak during spring training. The Sox have played to capacity crowds in their last 104 Grapefruit League games at City of Palms Park dating back to March 16, 2003.
As of this afternoon, StubHub.com has tickets to all 15 Red Sox home spring training games, including 199 tickets to the home opener against the Minnesota Twins Monday, February 28. The cheapest ticket offered there is a $39.99 standing room only ticket listed for $39.99 (face value $10) and the cheapest actual seat is one in Upper Reserved 201 for $40 (face value $23). The Red Sox have maintained ticket prices at City of Palms Park in five of the last six years.
Boston’s other major professional sports teams, the NBA’s Celtics and NHL’s Bruins, remain popular draws as well. The Celtics have averaged a sellout (18,624) in each of their 19 games this year at TD Garden . The Bruins, meanwhile, sold out every regular season and postseason game during the 2010 calendar year, the first time the franchise has accomplished that feat since 1972, and are likely to draw their 50th straight capacity crowd at TD Garden (where the hockey capacity is 17,565) tonight when they host the Ottawa Senators.