The Red Sox Redefine 'Sellout'

fenway parkEmpty seats? Sold out! (Photo via iStockPhoto.)

What do you call a bunch of empty seats at Fenway Park while tickets are being handed out to customers for free? A sellout of course! The Globe was on it today, finding that in an effort to continue their sellout streak (now at 723 games, the longest in the history of Major League Baseball), the Fenway Park ticket talliers have not been counting actual seats sold, but have their own logic and definition for the term:

The Sox count the total number of tickets they distribute, including an average of 800 complimentary tickets each game to charities and others, as the basis for a sellout. They also count standing room tickets toward the total.

Using that reasoning, you can make every game a sellout. Right now, Sox ticket prices are among the highest in the country — and $127 on average for resale — but interest in single game tickets has been lagging the past few weeks. And fans seem miffed that the management’s incessant propaganda over their sellout stats don’t reflect reality. One commenter at the Globe writes:

The con is on. Sellout streak implies that the demand is greater than the supply, which in turn gives the illusion that the product is in fact better than it is, which makes ignorant people desire that product more.

Selling out (tickets) and selling out (your ideals) are two different things. But it may not be long before fans stop thinking of tickets when it comes to the Sox management. Do you think a sellout streak matters?