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Cubs notes: Plesac and Scalpers

Cubs notes: Plesac and Scalpers

We recently heard from a national analyst that he would be surprised if the Cubs were able to steal someone from a network to take Bob Brenly’s place in the booth.

He did however suggest Dan Plesac would be a nice fit, and Dave Van Dyck  reports he may have interest after all. The same has been said recently about Rick Sutcliffe.

Both are former Cubs pitchers  who work currently for networks (Sutcliffe ESPN and Plesac MLB network) and are currently under contract. That doesn’t mean they can't get out of those deals.

When it comes to the two I have heard Sutcliffe’s interest is lukewarm where Plesac’s is much more genuine.

Meanwhile, the Cubs business side made a move today. ESPN’s Jon Greenberg reports the Cubs are taking on some of the ticket scalpers that make up their season ticket base. They purged some accounts and opened up a possible 1000 seats for new season ticket holders.

The Cubs sent out 45 nonrenewal letters to a select group of season-ticket holders Wednesday, noting that season tickets "are a revocable license granted on a yearly basis at the sole discretion of the team."

The Cubs feel confident their research in trying to identify potential scalpers is correct, and only professional ticket sellers, many of whom have out of state addresses, were affected, according to one Cubs source, who said: "This is about the guy in California with 40 tickets."

"This move does not impact season-ticket holders who want to resell tickets because they can't attend the game," Cubs spokesman Julian Green said in a phone conversation. "This is about getting tickets in the hands of fans who want to enjoy Cubs baseball and experience Wrigley Field."

This is interesting timing as tickets were all too easy to come by this past season, could this be preemptive? Meanwhile, the Cubs deal with Stub Hub is about to expire and fans were encouraged  to resell their tickets using the outlet in the past few years.

Some of the brokers I talked to said they essentially “took a bath” on tickets this season and were cutting back in their inventory. Hopefully demand will be an issue again as the Cubs return to contention.

There were times in 2003-2004 and 2007-2008 where scalpers took great advantage of the hot ticket the Cubs were.

What are your thoughts?

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  • So I imagine all these tickets will be funneled into Wrigley Field Premium Ticket Services?

  • In reply to SFToby:

    That is pretty much the first thing that came to mind and others mentioned.

  • I think Dan Plesac might be the most unimaginative, boring, safe and worst pick to replace Bob Brenly the Cubs could possibly make. I shudder at the possibility of this milk toast, run of the mill, cliche filled nothing being on my television all summer. Plesac seems fine as an in-studio analyst ( well as a second in studio analyst) but over every inning during a ballgame. There has to be some personality. No wait, check that. Personality has to be a strong factor. And not for the "Well the Cubs are going to be so hard to watch we need someone entertaining in the booth" nonsense that's been making the rounds. If Brenly taught me anything it's that his personality made his insights that much more riveeting. I knew when he was seriously pissed, when he was impressed, when he was full of it, etc. Thus he never went into the background and actually added to the telecast. Plesac is so milk toast. He'd just become white noise. Pass.....

    As for scalpers, I hate the lot of them. And this move seems minor and insignificant to me. But I'm all for it.And if they want to do something about the hundreds of so called "ticket brokers" who are all within three blocks of Wrigley, more power to them...

  • In reply to felzz:

    I think Plesac is knowledgeable and fun on mlb network and would be good fit in the booth. Mlb gets a little goofy at times trying to attract viewers of all kinds, but that will help Len with the 7th inning guest. We could do worse.

  • In reply to felzz:

    I couldn't agree more about Plesac. He acts goofy and energetic which is fun but it would get old quick.

  • In reply to felzz:

    I used to buy tickets from a great guy who stood outside Wrigley selling tickets. His name was Jerry, but unfortunately he passed away last February. If you look his picture in the obituary about him in the Trib you'll probably recognize him:

    http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2012-02-12/news/ct-met-manos-obit-20120213_1_peanut-business-wrigley-field-vendor

    Scalpers do suck, but they're cheaper than buying season's tickets and then trying to sell the ones you don't use. But I'd still rather buy them at the ticket windows at face value.

  • In reply to felzz:

    I aplologize in advance for the nit-picky nature of this comment, but the word is milquetoast. Aside from that, I generally agree with your assessment.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to felzz:

    I can't stand Plesac, period, even on MLB. He would be among the worst choices possible, including Sutcliffe and Grace, two selfish announcers who make everything about them.

    I don't care for any of the names thrown around so far. Here's an idea - hire someone who is talented rather than a name with Cubs ties.

  • In reply to Just Win:

    That is why I like the idea of Glanville not really a Cubs guy but I think he would be an easy listen with Len.

  • In reply to Tom Loxas:

    I like Glanville as well, but some of the silly stuff that wears thin on us no nonsense guys from color Plesac types, is by design for the youngsters who will later become hardcore baseball fans like us.

  • What does it mean when you say the Cubs deal with StubHub expires this year? Can a team restrict StubHub from selling its tickets? Or did season ticket holders get a lower fee?

  • In reply to TulaneCubs:

    I don't think they would restrict you but the Cubs for instance made it easier and promoted reselling through their system.

  • I paid more money for 4 post season bleacher seats than could admit to my wife. All around us were attending their first game in Wrigley and wanted to do the wave. I support getting the tickets to real Cub fans.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    You'd think those seats would have been cheap since the Cubs haven't made the post-season for the past few years.

  • 2003

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Now I understand.

  • Plesac would be an alright choice, though it'd probably mean more speaking time on MLB Tonight for Mitch Williams, which is not a good thing. I feel like Glanville wants it the most of the national broadcasters, though I like the thought of Karros a lot.

    Really too bad Rod Beck still isn't alive. Yeah, the production crew would have to be on the button with the bleeps, but you know good and well it'd be an incredibly entertaining experience.

  • Otani's been drafted in the NPB draft and won't be able to sign with a Major League team before April.

  • I have season tickets and took an absolute beating this year on games in which I couldn't go. I applaud this front office for trying to eliminate the scalpers. I'm sure I probably could have done better in my effort to resell, but I'm not trying to make a living off my tickets like these scalpers and I have no doubt they are costing me money. It has also become much more apparent to me that StubHub needs some competition... They charge 15% to Sellers of tickets. I think the buyers are paying somewhere around 10% when you add in the charge for the 'Print at home' which you have no other choice but to do. I did not mind the 15% charge on my end back when I could get something close to face value and I could just print out a FedEx label and drop in a box. But now I'm selling my tickets for half of face value, paying StubHub 15 cents on the dollar and they don't even need to work out an agreement with FedEx while they are making 25 cents on the dollar. Anyone for starting a new website called ticketoak.com?

  • Tom- Could you find out what these guys on MLB make? I have a feeling that it's low six figures at best. The Cubs job could mean $500k/yr for Glanville. It should not be that difficult to pry them away. Doug had a few good years in baseball, but he didn't make a fortune. He'd take this job in a heartbeat.

  • In reply to Cuyler:

    I will try and find out.

  • In reply to Cuyler:

    Sounds like your guess is about right. It comes down to workload.

  • I feel sorry for the season ticket holders these days, and hope this move by the cubs to pull some tickets back and get them to those on the wait list will help somewhat. But really it will take putting a winner on the field won't it? And then I hope it makes up somewhat for the tougher times.

    Plesac is ok in smal doses, I think his Milwaukee accent would wear on me though. I don't see why the Cubs can't land someone from a Network if they want to. If Arizona can get the play by play guy they got, plus pull the current color guy from another team, why can't the cubs? Is the cubs job worse than Arizona's ? I don't think so, I just think you need to have a plan for what you want to do, and it needs to come from the ownership and not the network. If left to gn, may wind up with another guy whose voice is higher than Ennits....

  • In reply to eddie35:

    I think they can get someone of that ilk. Its just the travel is a bitch and network guys just don't have to deal with it as much.

  • I do applaud the Cubs for trying to eliminate the scalpers. I hate dealing with them. I used to try & trade tickets & it was like "Ill take your 4 saturday box seats tickets against the Cardinals & give you 2 nose bleeds for a September afternoon against the Astros."

    Sometimes I go on stubhub to sell my 2 bleachers tickets & see someone is up there offering 15-20 bleacher tickets. Are these the STHs the Cubs are weeding out?

  • In reply to Cub Fan Dan:

    They said its about the guys who have 30 seats or so who are just trying to capitalize and not go to games.

  • Also do you know exactly what kind of deal the Cubs have with stubhub? Is it just promoting Stubhub for cash? I wish the Cubs can get STH lower fees & other advantages selling on stubhub.

    I find selling on there fairly easy but by the time all is said & done Stubhub make 25-friggen percent plus on a transaction. Stubhub is the guy standing on the corner of Addison & Sheffield, only from behind a computer screen.

    Great work Tom!

  • Is Todd Hollandsworth under contract with CSN? I think he'd be a much better fit than Suttcliffe or Plesac in my opinion.

  • In reply to lokeey:

    I wouldnt mind Holly one bit but I think I have Glanville as my choice at this point.

  • Great work Tom!

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Thanks John.

  • One of my media sources says Glanville good analyst but personality should be an issue for 162 game schedule.

  • In reply to Tom Loxas:

    He is a bit soft-spoken and he's thoughtful, so maybe that doesn't translate to off-the-cuff analysis, but I hope they give him a chance to prove himself one way or the other.

  • Speaking of broadcasting teams, I see that Bruce Levine has suggested that Ozzie would be an interesting third wheel in the Pale Hosers' TV booth. Can you imagine listening to those three egomaniacs at the same time?
    Bruce must be playing early Halloween tricks on our minds.

  • In reply to StillMissKennyHubbs:

    Haha! That would make me tune into more Sox games for certain.

  • John
    Since (1) you have in-depth knowledge of the Cubs' organization from top to bottom, (2) have excellent fact-finding and analytical capabilities, and (3) are a die-hard Cub fan, why don't YOU apply for this job?

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