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Dodgers tickets to be priced based on tier system

Club introduces a program that determines the cost of tickets according to an assigned value that uses stars, ranging from one to four. The more stars, the more expensive the game.

January 15, 2013|By Dylan Hernandez, Los Angeles Times
  • Clayton Kershaw, left, and Matt Kemp of the Dodgers, who will put individual tickets on sale Jan. 26 at 10 a.m.
Clayton Kershaw, left, and Matt Kemp of the Dodgers, who will put individual… (Stephen Dunn / Getty Images )

Fans will have to pay a minimum of $30 to enter Dodger Stadium on days the New York Yankees or Boston Red Sox are visiting this year.

The Dodgers on Monday introduced a four-tiered valuation system for individual game tickets, joining the legion of American sports franchises that have implemented variable pricing structures.

The flip side is that tickets to a midweek game against the Arizona Diamondbacks will probably cost less than they did a year ago.

"This is becoming the industry standard, not just in L.A., but in every sport across the country," said David Siegel, the Dodgers' senior director of ticket sales.

Each of the Dodgers' 81 regular-season home games has been assigned from one to four stars. The more stars, the more expensive the game.

Only six games fall under the four-star category: opening day April 1 against the San Francisco Giants, July 30-31 against the Yankees and Aug. 23-25 against the Red Sox. For those games, top-deck seats will cost $30 and left-field pavilion seats $35.

That is significantly more than any other game, but consider this: When the Yankees visited Dodger Stadium in 2010, tickets were marketed only as part of multiple-game ticket packages.

Twenty-six games are classified as three-star games, 33 as two-star games and 16 as one-star games.

All of the bobblehead nights are three-star games.

Of the one-star games, all but one are on a Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday. The exception is a Sunday game against the San Diego Padres on Sept. 1.

A top-deck seat will cost $8 for a one-star game, $10 for a two-star game and $20 for a three-star game. The same tickets would have cost $13 last year if purchased the day of the game.

The games' classifications will not change. For example, a one-star game won't suddenly become a three-star game if Clayton Kershaw is scheduled to pitch. Also, the Dodgers won't charge fans more to purchase tickets on the day of games, as they did last year.

"It's a lot more transparent and easier to understand," Siegel said.

The Dodgers had a tiered pricing system of sorts last season for tickets purchased in advance. Games for Friday and Saturday used to cost more than the others, regardless of the opponent.

For three- and four-star games, some of the most aggressive price increases were in the top deck, outfield pavilions and reserve levels, historically the cheapest seats.

Siegel said the new system encourages fans to purchase season tickets and mini plans. Prices for season-ticket and multiple-game packages remain largely unchanged from a year ago.

For example, a preferred reserve seat for a game against the Yankees would cost $6 as part of a season-ticket package or $11 as part of a 30-game mini plan. Purchased individually, the same seat would cost $35.

The Dodgers started selling season tickets in late October. Based on their early numbers, Siegel said he is expecting the team to have more season-ticket holders than last year.

Individual tickets will go on sale Jan. 26 at 10 a.m. at Dodger Stadium and at The Dodgers will hold their first off-season FanFest later that day at the ballpark, which is scheduled to start at 11 a.m. Admission is free. Among the players expected to attend are Kershaw, Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier and Zack Greinke.

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