The Wrigley Field bleachers opened, except for the uncompleted right-field section, for the game Monday, May 11 against the Mets. 3,500 seats were available in the opened sections, making the official seating capacity of the ballpark 39,469. When right field opens, 2,000 more seats will be added to that total.
Here are the numbers for the seven-game homestand that ended Sunday:
Date Announced Crowd In-House Estimate 5/11 32,980 23,000 5/12 31,542 21,000 5/13 33,709 19,000 5/14 31,496 17,000 5/15 33,617 28,000 5/16 38,883 38,000 5/17 36,289 30,000
Good crowds showed up all week based on ticket sales, though in-house counts were low for the Mets series due to very chilly weather for the night games and then a threat of rain on Thursday. With warmer weather arriving for the weekend set against the Pirates, the ballpark was nearly full on Saturday and good crowds were there both Friday and Sunday. The bleachers were full for the reopening on Monday, and also for Saturday's game; for the rest of the games, there were a fair number of empty seats in the bleachers. This will likely change as the weather improves, and certainly if the Cubs continue to play well, more people will show up.
For this homestand, 238,516 tickets were sold, an average of 34,074 per date. Of significance, this is the first homestand of seven games or longer where at least 31,000 tickets were sold for every game since August 9-15, 2012.
My in-house estimates for this homestand totaled 176,000, or 25,143 per date, which means there were an estimated 8,931 no-shows per date. There were far more no-shows for the Mets series than for the Pirates series, in my estimation.
For the season, the Cubs have sold 667,826 tickets, or 31,801 per date. The total ranks fifth in the major leagues, largely because the Cubs also rank fifth (tied) in the number of home dates played so far (21). The average of 31,801 ranks ninth, about 500 per game behind the Rockies and just slightly ahead of the Tigers (31,755).
My in-house estimates for the season total 533,000, or 25,381 per date. That's an estimated no-show total of 134,826, or 6,420 per date. That's down from this time last year and I would expect that average number to continue to drop, with better weather (hopefully) ahead and the team playing well.
The next homestand includes a weekend visit from the Kansas City Royals, who, as defending American League champions, might bring a large contingent of their fans to Wrigley Field. The Royals also haven't been at Wrigley in 14 years, which might be a good reason for their fans to make the trip.