The Legend

The Legend

Friday, August 28, 2015

Comparing Costs (Black Bears vs Pirates)

I'm heading to the Black Bears game tonight. It is good timing as Ke'Bryan Hayes was just called up for the final stretch of the season. Hayes was the Pirates compensation pick at the end of the first round for losing Russell Martin to free agency. He is also the son of former major leaguer Charlie Hayes.

Since I'm not going to be home tonight to be able to make a card related post I figured it would be fun to try and see the cost difference between a Pirates and Black Bear game. My estimates will be based on attending a weekday game of the Pirates. I only attend weekend games if the tickets were gifts or I'm part of a group. The demand/cost is much higher for those.

Cost of Black Bear ticket  $12
Pirate weekday ticket  $30-40 (obviously this fluctuates, but this about the going rate for a lower level seat that isn't considered premium (dugout, close to homeplate, close to field, etc).

Black Bears Free
Pirates $15 

Black Bears - stadium is about 5 minutes from my house so cost is minimal.
Pirates - probably about 150-160 miles round trip, so probably around a half tanks worth. $20
 * Generally when I go to a game one person drives the other pays for parking.

Black Bears - I'm able to eat at home
Pirates - During the week it is usually stadium fare as their is not enough time to hit a restaurant. Fortunately, Pirate food concessions are fairly cheap. ~$10-15 .

Black Bears ~$7 a piece.
Pirates ~ $8-10

Obviously beer cost would be an easy one to avoid, but I like having a beer at a game. Merica! Both parks offer a nice selection so it is a purchase that will happen more times than not.

Black Bears ~ probably nothing.....I'm just happy with the beer
Pirates - Probably around $10 to cover some tipping and some other drink.

Black Bears ~$20
Pirates ~ $95-105

The Pirates price can shift quite a bit. In April and May I can find lower level tickets in the $15-20 range so it can be a relatively cheap day of entertainment. The price tends to go higher when I have more friends with me (more rounds of beer), or we have time to have a sit down meal.

It is nice to have both options at my disposal. I'll always favor the big league club, but the Black Bears have definitely given me a nice option at home.

It would be interesting to see the discrepancy for a big market team.  Zippy, the balls in your court!


  1. " Zippy, the balls in your court!" I had a similar idea in mind but I gave up because I'm so disinterested in major league baseball. Plus I tend to spend more than one probably should at MiLB games on merchandise (hats, sweaters and cards primarily). And most of all, I don't want people to know that SIY baseball offers far greater value than NYY baseball. If they do Yankee fans might show up, and then... oh no.

    Anyway have fun at tonight's game :).

    1. I'm really curious to see how the Black Bears draw next year once the novelty of the new team and stadium wears off. Either way I was happy to see it be a huge success this year. The game last night was another sell out.

  2. Merica! Heck yeah! Have a beer for me!

  3. After living close to a MiLB team (Round Rock Express, formerly the Astros and now the Rangers AAA team), it's REALLY hard to swallow the MLB's price point when I visit San Diego, especially at Petco Park. SD isn't a large market, but everything seems more expensive in California than Texas anyways. I still haven't made the trek up to Arlington or down to Houston, but one of these days I'll bite the bullet.

    1. I had all intentions to go to the Pirates/Padres series in San Diego this year, but my friend that I was going with had to cancel. It is one of my destination parks. Like you said, it wasn't going to be cheap. At that point of the season the vibe was very positive around the Padres and the price for tickets reflected that.

      I bet you can find some good tickets for a day Rangers game. I'm sure people don't like to bake in the sun in that Texas heat for three hours.

  4. Great breakdown. The SJ Giants play about 20 minutes away from me and offer a ton of free tickets during the week. You can usually bring $20 and have one helluva game.

    1. You really can't beat it. Going to minor league baseball game is just as cheap as going to a movie.