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Fun With Numbers

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I have been on a quest -- OK, it's not a very deep or long quest, let's call it an outing instead -- to find out what the new seating capacity will be at Wrigley Field once the new bleachers are completed. (This would not include the approximately 1,000 standing-room tickets that are sold once all the seats are sold out.)

After careful research, the only conclusion I can reach is:

Who the hell knows?

The Cubs website says the current (pre-2006) capacity is 39,538.

ESPN.com's Wrigley Field page says it's 39,558.

USA Today says 38,765.

The generally authoritative ballparks.com site has a figure of 38,902. Baseball-almanac.com agrees with that, as does at least one online ticket broker, but this one has the 39,538 figure, and this broker site says 39,048.

Then there's this site, quoting a 2002 Baseball Digest article, which says it's 38,884.

So, the pre-2006 capacity of Wrigley Field is either: 38,765, 38,884, 38,902, 39,048, 39,538 or 39,558.

It should be fairly simple to figure out the increase, right?

Um, nope. The Cubs website says there are 1,800 seats being added, which would make the new capacity either:

40,565, 40,684, 40,702, 40,848, 41,338 or 41,358.

Ah, but then there's this recent Tribune article which says the number of added seats is 1,702 (a number I believe to be correct, incidentally), which would then make the new capacity either:

40,467, 40,586, 40,604, 40,750, 41,240 or 41,260.

All these numbers could be making your eyes glaze over, but in this case, I think I'm going to accept the Cubs website figure for the original capacity, and the Tribune article (which agrees with information I have from sources I trust) for the added seating, which will make the new capacity of Wrigley Field 41,240.