Sellout streak at Fenway? Don’t bet on it.
There is one final indignity left for the Boston Red Sox before they can truly start over.
The team’s sellout streak at Fenway Park will end this season, perhaps as early as the second game, team president Larry Lucchino predicted Thursday.
With the 2013 season around the corner, Lucchino admitted that ticket sales are down and called it the most challenging year in his ownership’s tenure in Boston. The team is expecting the home opener on April 8 to be sold out, but the streak could end as early as April 10, the second home game of the season.
“Historically, for all of baseball, the second game of the season has been the toughest game to sell tickets for,” Lucchino said. “It could be as early as that.
“I have no doubt that Opening Day will be a sellout. Of course, April weather doesn’t help a lot. We have a lot of home games in April. It could be as early as the second [game], but I suspect it will be sometime in the first or second week.”
The Red Sox have listed 793 consecutive games as sellouts, a record for the MLB. The team defines a sellout based on the number of tickets distributed. However, in recent years empty seats have been plentiful at Fenway and available for sale into the middle innings.
According to Lucchino, the Red Sox have sold 99.6 percent of the available seating capacity over the last 11 years.
The nearly 10-year-old streak began on May 15, 2003, and stretched through the end of the 2012 season, when the Red Sox finished with a home attendance figure of 3,043,003. The Red Sox broke the record for consecutive regular-season sellouts this past June, surpassing the NBA’s Portland Trail Blazers mark of 744.