Friday, February 15, 2008

Pre-Sale Opening Night Seats

As promised to reader Eric--I wanted to inform him that Our Washington Nationals sent out this afternoon an email to All Season Ticket Holders concerning Pre-Sale of Opening Nights Seats--beginning February 21 at 9AM. And for Opening Night Seats only. Other Pre-Sales for the remainder of the 2008 Campaign will come at a later date. Two per account and a one time use password code is in effect. Eric mentioned problems with receiving emails from Our Team. So Eric, this is to let you know--the email has been sent out. Hopefully you were able to work out the issue with I.T.



Anonymous said...

Should'nt it say Feb.20th or are you trying to throw us a curve?

Screech's Best Friend said...

No--the email reads February 21st. Last time I checked--I read it. I have no idea what you read. Maybe you should check your source.

Anonymous said...

My e-mail also says February 21, but I believe that people with 20-game plans will get their opportunity on February 20.

I didn't hear this information directly from the Nationals--to me it is just hearsay--but there has been a lot of discussion on the Nationals' message board ...

Anonymous said...

My e-mail says from 9 am on February 20 through 9 pm on February 23

Anonymous said...

Makes sense that 20 game plans go a day early.....they do not have tickets to opening day yet. While understand SBF you have all the access, perspective seems to have suffered some.....

Screech's Best Friend said...

Hey anonymous--I have no problem with anyone else getting Opening Night Season Tickets. I have no interest in purchasing additional seats. Someone asked me to inform them when the team sent out an email notifying folks--so I did. If you can't appreciate me passing along the information--then you are the one who has lost perspective. Its amazing how some can be so petty?

Anonymous said...

I'm a 81 gamer STH and have not received an email. I guess I'll have to call. Oh, and my parking form I submitted was not received because I got a phone call asking me if i was interested in parking.

Screech's Best Friend said...

Anonymous at 9:54AM--Yes, we have also noticed that sometimes you have to stay on top of them--as things tend to fall through the cracks--although I am not sure why. You should definitely call your ticket rep--as once notified of a situation similar to yours--they tend to move on it right away. Sorry to hear that though.

Unknown said...

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Unknown said...

I find it odd that you can only by two tickets during the pre-sale regardless of how many seats you have. All other years you could buy tix for the number of seats that you have season tix for. I have had 4 1/4 season tix since the begining and hope I can still get all 4 of us to opening day.

Unknown said...

Also, I hope you keep your blog independent as opposed to joining the MLBHub site. It is a great service to Nats fans and hope it doesn't change. Thanks for all the work you put into it.

Anonymous said...

I don't think opening day has been sold out since '05. Was it sold out in '05? I know that I bought tickets in '06 and '07 on gameday. Never the less, 2 tickets per STH group is disappointing. On another note, I was glad to read on Nats Home Plate that DC Council Chair Vincent Gray is now talking a parking lot in Poplar Point with a pedestrian bridge to Nats Park. Check the record, I mentioned that on this very blog months ago.

Screech's Best Friend said...

On Opening Night Ticket Pre-Sale. Outside of our Season Tickets, I have never purchased additional seats--so I was not even aware that in the previous three seasons at RFK--you could buy as many Opening Day Seats as your have in your Ticket Portfolio. I think that's fair to allow everyone to purchase up to the seats that hold. But, only guessing here--the team may have a worry that 20 Game Plans might end up with Zero Opportunity--since their plans do not have that game. And since this particular game is a One Time Only Inaugural Opener-- those folks are getting first dibs on the Pre-Sale--I find that fair too--in an effort to spread things around. Also, since New Nationals Park holds just over 41,000--you can bet a ton of Dignitaries are most likely taking up a few seats themselves--thus a possible shortage for Opening Night. Just talking out loud here.

And Mike Bowers--I am planning on staying Independent. Sohna and I have little incentive to give all our hard work away--so someone else can profit.

Anonymous said...


I'm also a 20-game plan holder, and I was also disappointed to find out that I can't buy the same number of seats for the opener that I have in my plan (4). We've been able to do that each of the first 3 seasons. I guess that's a sign that season ticket sales have increased during the off-season.

We all love the work you do with this blog, SBF. Don't let the occasional brickbat from anonymous bother you.

Anonymous said...


I am a 4 seat, 20 gamer since 2005 but, can now only get 2 tickets for Opening Night. I'm behind the Nats 99% of the time on stuff they do but, this is causing me some major heartburn. I confirmed this 2 ticket fiasco with some knucklehead in the ticket office on Friday.

There seems to be many other 20 gamers that have commented on the various Nats boards that are having the same problem.

I was wondering if you could do us 20 gamers a favor and check into the reason behind this gross oversight by the Nats. We should be able to purchase the same amount of seats we have on our plan, which was the case in 2005.

Anything you could do would much appreciated.

Chuck B.

An Briosca Mor said...

I am only a 20-gamer since 2007, so I don't know how things were done in 2005 and 2006. Last year, however, there was no special STH presale just for OD at all. It was a two or three day head start for all STHers on buying single game tickets for all games, not just OD. And 20-gamers got no head start over the other STHers either.

So this year they are giving us 20-gamers a one day head start over the rest of the STHers to get OD tix, since unlike them we don't have any already. That is nice, they didn't have to do that. The two-ticket limit per account is a pain, but OTOH if any 20-game person absolutely had to go to OD, they could have stepped up to a 41-game plan to guarantee it. There was no promise when we bought 20-game plans that we would get an OD ticket, just a promise that we would have a shot at them ahead of everyone else, which we got.

Everyone knows that the inaugural game at the new park is going to be an incredibly hot ticket. It will sell out no matter what. But it appears the team has decided that they don't want the game to be sold out to STHers before the general public even has a shot at getting a ticket. This makes sense, because their interest is in selling more tickets for the entire season, not just OD. If OD is sold out before single game ticket sales even start, there will be no buzz around that date. Remember, it's all about the buzz. People who go to the tickets site on March 4th trying to get an OD ticket and aren't successful may decide to buy tickets for another game while they're there. At the least, they will know where the ticket site is, which if they never went there because OD was already sold out, they wouldn't.

So the two tickets per account limit is obviously set up to ensure that the game cannot possibly be sold out before single game sales begin. They know how many season tickets they've sold, and they know that if worst case every account buys its allotted two OD tickets, the game still will not be sold out prior to single game sales. They can prepare advertising about "Get your OD tix on March 4th" without having to worry that on that date everybody lured in by the ads is guaranteed to be disappointed. This all makes good business sense, IMHO anyway.

Unknown said...

SBF - Thanks for the comment, that does make sense, this being a special occasion, first season, etc.

Anonymous - I talked to the ticket office, they said that there will be a second round of pre-sales after the first, before it goes to the public. So hopefully you (and I ) will end up with the amount of tickets we have in our package. I guess the just wanted to make sure everyone has at least two.

Eric said...

SBF-Thanks a lot! I did not get the email so you saved me. I'm contacting my rep now.

Eric said...

I'm actually pretty outraged at the 2 seat limit. If I had known about this, I would have split up my 5 seats into 3 different orders. I saved the Nationals a bunch of work by getting us all together, and now we may have to do a lottery for the 2 seats. You'd better believe that I'll be on the phone with my rep about this all day tomorrow if need be.

SBF-thanks again for your efforts.

Eric said...

PS. I was told by the ticket office before I put my deposit down for 20 games that I would have an opportunity to buy the number of seats I have in my package (5) for opening day before the general public. Talk about a bait and switch.

Chuck B. said...

I talked to the ticket office again today about the 2 ticket limit and was told that there would NOT be another pre-sale chance to buy OD tickets before March 4th. Which contradicts what I was told the first time I called.

Their excuse was a shortage of tickets. When I asked them why Full and Half STH get a chance to buy an additional 2 tickets on the 21st, when they have already received their allotment through their plan, the answer was "a perk of being a season ticket holder"
I can live with people getting some more perks for obvious reasons, but in this case it seems a little misguided.

20 gamers are being treated like 2nd class citizens and it is complete crap. Now I have to explain to my 2 kids that 1 of them most likely can't go.

The FO screwed this one up big time.

Eric said...

I bought my 20 game plan specifically to get the opportunity to buy opening day tickets before the general public. Before I put my deposit down in August I checked with the ticket office about this, and I got the following response:

"Dear Eric,

All of our season ticket holders will have an opportunity to purchase individual game tickets, including Opening Day, prior to the tickets going on sale to the general public. As soon as we determine when those tickets will become available, we will forward that information to you.


Washington Nationals Ticket Sales & Service Department

Pledge Your Allegiance"

Each of the 5 in our group is a season ticket holder, as they will each hold a ticket for each of the 20 games. I bought my 20 game plan based on that email dated August 24th. Is this the definition of bait and switch, or just flat out fraud? I plan to talk to my rep tomorrow about this, and if I do not get the 5 tickets for opening day, I will follow up with the Better Business Bureau to resolve the issue with copies to Stan Kasten, Mayor Fenty and Councilman Evans (Ward 2, my ward).

This could really hurt my relationship with the team. Chuck, I feel for you. Did the ticket folks you talked to tell you to choose your favorite child to go to opening night? I am going to hold off on planning my spring training trip until I see what happens. Good luck all.

Anonymous said...

For anyone wanting more than the two tickets that the Nats are giving you the PRIVILEGE of purchasing, might I recommend,, or

Of course, you could also have simply purchased a full or half season ticket plan that included the number of opening day tickets you desired.

But of course, that would be asking to much wouldn't it? Instead, you have to feel entitled to something that you: (1) did not pay for; (2) did not order; and (3) were never promised in writing.

And for those of you who will inevitably reply with some form of "but . . . but . . . the Nats have always done it this other way," things change. Precedent gets overruled. Deal with it.

Anonymous said...

Eric, it sounds like neither bait and switch or fraud. They promised you the opportunity to buy openeding night tickets before the general public. You are receiving the opportunity to buy 2 opening night tickets before the general public.

They never promised you 5. They never promised you the same number of seats as included in your plan.

It is not fraud just because you (and others) created false expectations for yourselves by reading things between the lines that simply did not exist.

Caveat emptor. Although it is little consolation now, you really should have clarified this with the team before putting down a deposit.

Chuck B. said...

To Anonymous @ 8:04pm,

Let me attempt to put this nicely, you just flat out don't get it. Don't you think if I could afford even a 1/2 season plan I would have done so.

I love and support my Nats just as much as the next person.

The Nats are pulling a fast one here.

Now, I don't know if it's fraud or bait & switch. But, what I do know it is showing a lack of respect for 20 gamers. I find it ridiculous that people who already have guarenteed tickets to OD would be able to purchase 2 more than their allotment. That is a slap in the face to the 20 gamers who provide a good amount of revenue to this organization as well.

By the by, I did check stub hub, ebay, etc. and upper deck seats are already going for almost as much as my 4 seats for the entire 20 games on my plan.
And I'll bet a fair amount of those extra tickets purchased by half and full STH end up on stub hub, ebay, etc.

If you are a person who can afford a half or full season plan and you have your tickets, great, I don't begrudge you of that. But, what the heck do you care if we 20 gamers raise a beef about this? It doesn't effect you, after all you have your tickets already.

Eric said...

A season ticket holder isn't one person who has 5 tickets. A season ticket holder is a person who holds a season ticket, so the $1000 we paid was for 5 season ticket holders (each of us holding a ticket). Therefore, the 5 of us were promised a chance to buy opening day tickets. By your logic, our 5 tickets purchased are one season ticket holder, so the nationals could claim that they need all 5 tickets to admit one person to a game...obviously ridiculous. Once our money was down, the promise (which I have in writing) was changed.

Oh, and about the privilege...apparently my tax dollars as a DC taxpayer has given me the privilege to get screwed by Nats management, and I think that the DC government will be interested in what is going on.

Anonymous said...

If you cry babies would just quiet down and let the system work. You had an opportunity to purchase half or full season plan, but you failed in that regard, so deal with the system. Those that take the liability upfront and spend more money are in better position. If you not in position for opening game, then you will still have the opportunity to support the Nats during say the other 80 home games. It's not like you are missing the will be aired on ESPN Sunday Night Baseball. Enjoy the game and root for the Nats...if you truly are a Nats fan. Seems like some folks just thing opening day as the only game of the season...get real and support the team throughout the season. Get off the Roids and calm down.

Go Nats

Anonymous said...

Eric and Chuck to take a chill pill, these folks have contaminated a wonderful blog site to discuss the Nats in negative fashion. You folks need to take your ventaltion problems somewhere else...get your airducts cleaned out. Probably leftover Orioles fans...leave the rest of us positive folks alone and go see a game in Montreal.

An Briosca Mor said...

"A season ticket holder isn't one person who has 5 tickets. A season ticket holder is a person who holds a season ticket, so the $1000 we paid was for 5 season ticket holders (each of us holding a ticket)."

As far as the Nationals are concerned, a season ticket holder is the one who writes them the check and whose name is on the account. Sounds like although you have five seats, you only have one account. Look at your tickets. Well, okay you can't do that because we don't have them yet, but when you do get yours you will notice that all five tickets for each game have the same account number on them. That's one season ticket account.

Now, consider this. There are 41,000 seats in Nationals Park, more or less. That's all. And Opening Day is the hottest ticket in town, but only 41,000 tickets are available. Not everyone who wants one will get one. At the same time the team told you that as a 20-gamer benefit you would have the opportunity to purchase OD tix (subject to availability), they were also telling full and half season holders the same thing. In other words, promises were made to them as well as you. But at the time those promises were made, there was no guarantee as to how many tickets would be available, which is why they never told you you would get an opportunity to buy a certain number of tickets, like one per seat or whatever. They couldn't do that, because they had no idea how many tickets would be left after they sold as many season tickets as they could.

Now they know (roughly) how many seats they have left to sell for Opening Day, so they had to make the decision on how to distribute the opportunity to buy them among all season ticket holders. Apparently if they had said that everybody could have one OD ticket per seat in their plan, there would not have been enough to go around. So they chose a limit of 2 tickets per season ticket holder account because this likely will let everyone get that number of tickets before the game sells out. Remember, this limit applies to all accounts (20 game, 41 game and full season) because all accounts were promised the opportunity to buy opening day tix as a benefit of their account. There are full-season plans that are split among groups that will suffer because there aren't enough tickets to go around. There are half-season plans in which a father will now have to decide which kid to take to the game and which to leave home. And there are 20-game plans such as yourself who will suffer. The pain is spread around equally, as best as possible. There are not enough tickets to go around. Deal with it. You're not being bait-and-switched, and you're not being lied to. It's just one game, after all. Watch it on ESPN HD and then enjoy the other 20 games you paid to go to.

Chuck B. said...

Anonymous & 11:28 and 11:43,

First off, you two weak sisters need to put your names down with your comments.

Second, pull your heads out of the sand and get some perspective.

Being able to afford a full or half season plan doesn't make you a better fan...

You know what, forget it I would have a better chance talking to a wall. You two knuckleheads can put your heads back in the sand and carry on.

Anonymous said...


Why do any of us non-20 gamers care? Because you and others are whining that you do not have the opportunity to get something that you never paid for. Plain and simple. YOU DID NOT BUY A PLAN THAT INCLUDED OPENING NIGHT. You are not entitled to it. You should have no expectation to it.

Everyone is on equal ground here. Every single person that bought season tickets, regardless of how many they bought or what plan they have, all have the opportunity to buy the same number of opening night tickets before they go on sale to the public. There is no other way for it to be equal.

And the disrespect argument is played-out. The Nats are not disrespecting you. Disrespect would be if they mailed you tickets printed on tissue paper rather than cardstock. And, in case you forgot, the Nats are a business. Their goal is to make money, and they have shareholders (i.e. ticket holders) to answer to. If you, as a shareholder, do not like the business, then sell your shares. It's that easy. There are plenty of other people who will buy them in teh next few years.

Are you going to also throw a hissy fit when you have the opportunity to only buy 2 All star game tickets, or World Series tickets? Probably.

At the end of the day, you got exactly what you bargained for: X number of seats to 20 games. The cost of your season tickets did not include opening day, and you certainly did not pay for added respect. Grow up.

Chuck B. said...

Anonymous @ 9:47,

Man up, and put soome sort of name with your post.

Anonymous said...

You whining 20 game holders are pathetic. If you don't like the number of opening night seats you have, then remedy the problem next year by buying a larger ticket plan. I bought a full season plan so that I would not be in your shoes. I know everyone I go to games with will be there on opening night because we all have a full season plan. I also know I am going to recoup part of that cost with the 2 additional tickets I am able to buy.

You too could have ante'd up for a larger plan, and then tried to recoup a portion of the cost with the extra seats. Don't get pissed at the Nationals because you lack foresight and critical thinking, which would have allowed you to better plan.

An Briosca Mor said...

Since when is one a bigger man if he chooses to call himself Chuck B., just Chuck B., rather than Anonymous? You've really narrowed it down for us there, Chuck. That is, if your real name even is Chuck. Welcome to the Web, dude, where you're only as good as the words you say, not the name you do or don't hide behind.

Chuck B. said...

Thanks for your insight on how the web works there...Irish Biscuit.

I've caught your self-serving, opinionated posts many times before on various Nats blogs. Your a piece of work. You love to bloviate.

An Briosca Mor said...

Better to bloviate rather than just blow, wouldn't you say, Chuck B? At least people can find out who I am if they want to, unlike other bloviators who hide behind "Anonymous" or Blogger IDs that lead nowhere. It's a free country, there's a right to free speech, and fortunately or unfortunately free speech includes bloviating. Deal with it. (BTW, I'm a 20-game plan holder just like you, but for some reason I don't feel I'm being given the shaft by the Nats. Must be because I'm a piece of work, eh?)

Chuck B. said...

An Briosca Mor,

My guess is you probably don't care about the OD thing because you don't need more than 2 tickets.

Your right, bloviate all you want, people died for your right to do so but, please try not to bore us in the process.


My apologies for my part in turning this blog into a pissing and moaning session. It was not my original meaning but, it seems to have spiraled out of control.

My originial post/request to you @ 3:18 on 2/17 was for what I felt was a legitimate reason and it appears others feel the same way. It also appears others feel the opposite, for whatever reason.

If you do take the time to look into this for us 20 gamers, great. If not that's great too. You provide a great service/avenue for us hardcore Nats fans and for that, I Thank You.

Screech's Best Friend said...

Chuck B--Its OK. In fact, I have been so busy since last Saturday--I have had little free time and actually had not noticed how many comments had been made on this topic. Over the next few days--my time will free up a little bit--and I hope to get an official response. I will ask--although--I don't know what answer will be given. If I can pass along some further information--I will.

An Briosca Mor said...

"An Briosca Mor,

My guess is you probably don't care about the OD thing because you don't need more than 2 tickets.

Your right, bloviate all you want, people died for your right to do so but, please try not to bore us in the process."

You are right, Chuck B, I don't need the two OD tickets I am entitled to buy. Indeed, not only do I not need them, I may not even buy them. Haven't decided yet. But even if I did need them, I would realize that even those two tickets were not promised to me when I bought a 20-game plan in 2007. Neither could those two or more 2008 OD tickets have been promised to you by the current Nats owners when you first bought your 20-game plan in 2005, because they didn't own the team then. If you're feeling betrayed, you'll have just as much success getting restitution now from Tony Tavares as you will from Stan Kasten. Which is to say, none.

For the life of me, I can't understand why you fail to grasp this. But on the other hand, for the life of me I can't understand why you've bothered to read and be annoyed by all the comments I've left all over the Nats blogosphere if you find them so boring. Is your scrollbar broken?

Anonymous said...

Support the Nats. Root for the Nats. Enjoy baseball for the wonderful game it is, but for goodness sake...Get a Life CHUCK. You are out of control and you need to stop. There have been several Anonymous folks who have basically put you in their place with quality feedback. You are just out of line. Go pick another blog site to bother and leave us season ticket holder only.


Chuck B. said...

An Briosca Mor,

We are going to have to agree to disagree on this one. Trust me, I don't expect the Nats braintrust to come back with a card, flowers and 2 extra OD tickets for me.

It's more sentimental reasons for me, to have the memory just like OD 2005 with my kids and my Dad. Thats's the main reason for my frustration and thus my squeaky wheel rants.

Trust me, I have used the scrollbar on your posts.

One thing we have in common though is we love the Nats and hopefully there are no hard feelings here.

Go Nats!

Chuck B. said...

Chuck B. imposter @ 5:04,

Real nice. I'll bet your parents are real proud of you.

Some of you may not have agreed with my posts but, at least I didn't bring myself to this level.

At least I am man enough to admit that my spirited debate got a little too heated.

An Briosca Mor said...

I have no problem with the real Chuck B - or anything he has posted for that matter. But the imposter Chuck B needs to have his comment deleted as it was uncalled for. Hopefully SBF will take care of that soon.

Chuck B. said...

Thanks An Briosca Mor.
I'm glad there are no hard feelings.

Anonymous said...

The real problem I have is that they are goving full and half seasoners 2 seats more than their account calls for in stead of letting 20 gamers atleast get the same # first.
Also there is really not much difference between th three plan purchasers as most of the full or half seasoners are splitting with people and probably don't go to anymore games than us lowly 20 gamers.

Chuck B. said...

Anonymous @ 5:35,

Trust me, I feel your pain on the extra tickets for half and full STH. However, after having a few days to cool down from my initial digust of the whole matter, I have come to realize it is what it is.
I got my 2 tickets yesterday and I will have 20 other games to go to with my normal 4 seat plan.

Also, it is true a lot of plan holders split games between a group but, a good number don't for example, SBF I believe, has a full 2 seat plan for him and his better half.

Anonymous said...

"Dirty pool" - I know at least one person who got the 2 "extra" tickets he was entitled to for his account THEN started entering random numbers in the system to try and get 2 more. (He tried #'s similar to his account #)

With very little effort he found another pass code that worked and BINGO! now he has 4 tickets.

I hope the Nats are onto this behavior and cxl his order.

An Briosca Mor said...

It was not a good idea for them to use the account number as the password. Beyond any nefarious purposes (which as you point out did happen) there is the simple error of someone fat-fingering in their account number, transposing a couple of digits, and inadvertently hitting on someone else's valid account number. This innocent mistake would then usurp the real account holder's one-time-only use rights.

It would have been just as easy for them to generate a unique, "strong" password for every user, which if inadvertently mistyped would probably not have hit on another valid number. Hopefully they will learn from this and improve the process next year, just as they improved over last year's mistake of having a single generic password for everyone that immediately got plastered all over the Internet.

Chuck B. said...

""Dirty pool" - I know at least one person who got the 2 "extra" tickets he was entitled to for his account THEN started entering random numbers in the system to try and get 2 more. (He tried #'s similar to his account #)

With very little effort he found another pass code that worked and BINGO! now he has 4 tickets."


I've got to say that chaps my ass.
Where are people's values or sense of "fair play." Now some poor sap either doesn't get his 2 tickets or has to probably go through a lot of hassle to get the Nats Ticket Office to believe his story or reset his account. Just flat out unbelievable.

Anonymous said...

Nobody has yet mentioned what seems to me the most obvious reason for the Nats actions. As someone who can't even afford to plunk down for a 20 game plan I have to try and buy a single game ticket. That would most likely be made impossible if the large percentage of professional scalpers who are 20 game or season ticket holders were allowed to double down on their allotment of opening day tickets only to turn around and sell them back to us at a 400 percent markup. By only allowing 2 they are allowing people who are huge fans but can't afford 20 game or season packages (like myself) at least a prayer of attending opening day. (small as it may be)