I’m embarrassed to admit I was alive the last time the Indians won a World Series.
For decades, all we’ve heard about is, “It’s a rebuilding year.” The Great Pyramid and the Temple of King Herod took less time. The owners of all three Cleveland pro franchises are geniuses. At minimal cost to themselves, they apparently — and correctly — regard fans in this market as ninnies who will support any mediocre product put before them.
Since pro sports are entertainment and not high school, your perception about season ticket holders is right on the mark. There are other entertainment options, and people will choose them because our pro sports franchises are perennial losers.
I’ve been a New York Giants fan for six years because I like winners: When it comes to entertainment dollars, Vince Lombardi was right!
Michael B. Smith
Fans have to depend on the owners and executives of their sports teams to do their jobs correctly. The only recourse fans have is to quit being fans, or at least quit being paying fans.
On fans’ lack of trust in ownership — You hit the nail on the head. I don’t know how Bud Selig can look at the Indians and say baseball’s economic model is working.
Baseball’s economic model — while certainly flawed — doesn’t inflict any more pain on the Indians than it does on the Cardinals, Twins, Braves, Marlins, Rays and Tigers, all of whom have had more success in the past decade than the Tribe.
I am a lifelong Tribe fan and have been going to games since 1954, when my dad took me. I believe the fans are not supporting the Dolans because they see no significant improvement after we finished in second place last season.
Everyone knew we needed to add at least one reliable right-handed hitter and what happened? They brought in a bunch of older, last-gasp players and hoped to catch lightning in a bottle. Didn’t happen. Fans see that as not much of an attempt to improve the team.
They would probably have to overpay to get a reliable hitter to come to Cleveland, but you know what, getting someone shows the fans you are serious about winning. Other teams have managed to acquire players. Why not the Indians? Instead we get Johnny Damon? What is up with that? They are telling fans, “Hey, we are too cheap to really do something positive.”
The Dolans will not change minds until they invest in a player the fans can have some faith in. Sorry for the rant, but as a 58-year-old Tribe fan, this “cheaper is good” approach will eventually lose me as a supporter of the Indians.
The perception you have of Larry and Paul Dolan is widespread and will be very difficult to change. It has become a real problem for the executives who run the team, because it has depressed business.
Selling season tickets has become an unbearable burden, with prospective buyers reluctant to part with thousands of dollars to support a system that depends on periodic teardowns and rebuilds and the shedding of virtually every excellent player just as he reaches his prime.