The Cubs’ home opener against the Pirates is less than a month away and one of the changes that you will certainly notice when you get to Wrigley Field is that all the seats in the grandstand have been renumbered.
Since 1982 the grandstand has used an aisle numbering system. It made sense once you got used to it, but to be honest it’s led to a lot of confusion for first-time visitors to Wrigley Field. Al summarized this nicely last year:
They chose an “Aisle” system. This meant, as you surely know if you’ve sat in the middle of any section of seats at Wrigley, that the seats to one side of the middle were numbered 1 through 19 (or so, some had more, some less), with the other side 101 through 119. This resulted in confusion, as certain seats that were adjacent didn’t have consecutive seat numbers.
If you’re more of the visual type you can see what this system looks like in this fan’s blog post. You’ll notice in his pictures that there the seats in what looks like section 518 are numbered 101-104 before jumping to 6 and counting down (this would be the start of section 519).
Well, all of that is changing this year, and I’ve been pretty curious about the new numbering system. After all, I used to have a pretty good system for avoiding poles in the grandstand and it’s been more than a bit aggravating purchasing tickets without having seen the new numbering system in person.
The Cubs have provided a converter to find your new seat number. It was helpful for big picture changes (for example, the 400 level is now the 300 level, the 500 level became the 400 level and the bleachers are currently considered the 500s) but it wasn’t particularly helpful for specific seat views. Basically, I found it was only useful if you already knew a great seat that didn’t have an obstructed view. It’s less useful if you’re trying to get an idea of what the view will look like from a new seat or location.
I was originally going to take some extra time on opening day to scout the new numbering system, but it doesn’t look like I need to do that now. Rate My Seats has taken the time to renumber their photo database and help you avoid obstructed views.
They basically started in the right field corner and went around the lower grandstand and then the upper grandstand with renumbered views to give you an idea where the poles are relative to the new numbering system. Check it out below:
I found this was an awesome way to navigate the new seat map as I was purchasing a few tickets. Whether you’re buying your early-season tickets directly from the Cubs or on StubHub, this is a useful tool to make sure you’ll have a clear view of the game.