I want to say that I might be as popular as George W. Bush after publicly saying these thoughts that have came into my head.
I realize the importance that Wrigley Field has on us as Cubs fans, I understand that Wrigley is a temple of baseball, and the worlds greatest most loyal fans support the team that plays 81 games a year there.
I also love Wrigley Field myself, I love the atmosphere, I love the sights and sounds and while it pains me.
I have to say, that its time for the Cubs to get a new home, a new field to play ball on.
There are many reasons why I think the Cubs need and deserve a new stadium.
The most obvious is revenue, Yes I know what your probably thinking, Mike? revenue? Your joking right this team had 3 million plus in 2008 what are you talking about? Yes the Cubs did have a great ticket selling season, but when a great majority of your fans cannot go to a game because of outrageous ticket prices and “legal” scalpers there is a serious problem with that scenario. Granted that could happen at a new ballpark as well, but a Newer park has facilities for corporate suites and other amenities that keep the “hotshots” out of the general seating areas and thus opening those seats up for more fans.
Also the increased revenue from advertising, those suites and TV deals give more for the team to spend more money for players on the field and thus equals a better product that more people are going to have to go see.
New ballparks have more options for families at the ballpark. Purists will hate this one because the adage is you come to the ballpark to see the game, but the more you can get a family into the ballpark, the more money they can spend and the more likely they will come back. And really do you care that someone else’s kids using a pitch speed tracker? Or hitting machine? Basically opening the ballpark experience up to whole new demographics is vital to a teams financial successes, and this is the second reason why Wrigley has to go.
Third, while its great that the CTA is right next to Wrigley, it makes it difficult and very expensive to drive to a game. So you might say well too bad, but see people who want to experience everything that watching the Cubs live has to offer, don’t want to have to give up the convenience of their car. Also as a person who lives in the South Suburbs, I can tell you that id rather drive to Wrigley some games then pack myself into the cattle car known as the EL. Also the team owned parking lots give the team what??? MORE MONEY.
I think you can see where I am going with this, it all has to do with Money. Money talks, whether it be on the field or in the organization money is what makes Pro-sports teams flourish.
Fourth, More night games, while am not a numbers whiz I know there a lot of people here who are. But I know there is a link between the amount of day games versus the amount of night games and the wins and losses associated with each. Day baseball is what made Cubs fans, Cubs fans, and I understand that, Hell I am in that category too, but when you play a majority of your games in the day it does make you wonder how well the team could play if a good balance of those games where at night as opposed to the daytime.
Fifth, Wrigley is falling apart. I know theres some kind of sarcastic joke about the concrete falling at Wrigley a few years back and the netting and all that. But the main sections of the park sans the bleachers are crumbling. And a total over haul of the park might be just as costly if not more then a new one itself.
Sixth, New Ballparks give state of the art equipment for players to train, practice, and scout opposing teams. The equipment that some teams have in their ballpark could make your head spin, everything from gym equipment to video machines to weight training the works.
I love the Cubs, I love Wrigley field but I also know when its time to say goodbye, and that time is fast approaching im afraid, From all the “issues” that I have mentioned to countless others its really time to take what memories we have had at Wrigley and really start to think about just what might happen should the Cubs get a new ballpark.
With the chance of the Olympics coming to Chicago in 2016 and the hoopla surrounding that, It would make an excellent chance for the City, the Cubs and the State to look into this idea.
Where would you put this new stadium? That seems like more of the biggest question surrounding the idea of a new ballpark. There are prime locations in the Suburbs that a new facility would go. How about replacing the Old McCormick place with a new park that way you have prime parking lots and are still close to public transit. People will argue this point, What?!? The Cubs in Arlington Heights? Are you crazy? We have to remember regardless of where they play… As long as the Red C is on the ball cap you will be a fan and love them just as if they where still a Wrigley.