Notes from the Dave Howard and Mets bloggers conference call

Wow.

Where to begin?

What a crazy 36 hours and once again regular readers, I have made this a sticky post to keep it up top, new content will roll in below this post.

This evening, Dave Howard did a conference call with many of the bloggers (the usual suspects, the blogs you and I all read, and I will link to their versions of the story as I notice them.  Start with Hotfoot’s twitter and scroll down his timeline to about 6:30pm)

I got my invite mid afternoon.  Surprised. Excited.  Thrilled.

The time, slightly inconvenient.  I juggled things.  Hoped I could make it.

I wound up making the call with seconds to spare and sat in a parking lot scribbling notes on whatever I could find…which was this.

Yes I read Men’s Health magazine…but I digress.

Mr. Howard gets on the call…and let me see what I can read from my chicken scratch and what I can remember.  Nothing here is a direct quote, consider all paraphrasing.

He made some opening statements about bloggers being truly the voice of the fans, an important part of the community. I also wrote down “appreciate the passion” (If I recall, he appreciates the passion of the bloggers) and said that there was more interest in the blogosphere about the Mets than the Yankees.

- the phones lit up when the release went out

- still formulating partial plan information. That info will be finalized in the next week or so.  (I believe this was a new piece of information, I hadn’t seen/heard anything about the plans – but I may have missed it.)

Fellow bloggers forgive me for not identifying who asked what….from memory Caryn from Metsgrrl went first (her version of this story is here, her recap is much better and more thorough than mine).

Next a nice fellow from Amazin’ Avenue went.  Around then I seem to have scribbled “MLB has no say in pricing – club decision” which was in response to if MLB had an influence in the ticket pricing.

Dave was asked why the cheapest seats went from $11 to $12.   I scribbled “those were selling above face for most of the year.” (quoting my scribble not Dave) and Mr. Howard also said that although Promenade Reserve is +5% that plan holders getting the 10% discount will see their invoices be less.

Let’s pause on that.  That’s what has been confusing me since the ticket leak (oh, I found out the story on that and will be sharing that story this week).   When I looked at the tickets I am actually familiar with they seemed to be “more.” Yet Dan and everyone else who sent in things was showing decreases.  Now I get it.   It’s more on a game by game, less if you buy a 15.  Got it.

The next thing I scribbled was “more days at value level.”     That’s how it winds up being less even if a Yankee game upstairs is like $45.  OK, now I understand that too.

Now it’s my turn.

Ready?

I thank him for taking the time out of his day to do this and identify myself.   He jumps in and says he reads Mets Police.

Yeah.

And…….wait for it……….

We will catch a game together!

Long time readers know that I from time to time “invite” Mr. Howard to catch a game with me.  As fans.  No agenda.  No freebies.  I just want to sit in the “uppers” with the guy and hang.  I wouldn’t even tell you guys that it’s going to happen when it does so that we can do it as real anonymous fans.  (Yes I will share afterwards).

So that’s kinda neat!  We’ll fantasize about that as the winter goes by….back to tickets.

I say “I’m buying” and ask about the weekend plans.  There are 13 weekends, you are selling 15 game plans.  Can we expect 10/5 or 13/2 or what.   Caryn from Metsgrrl took better notes:

Shannon from Mets Police (who Dave Howard openly admitted to reading!) asked about the weekend plan disparity we all know and hate. Howard responded, “It’s really the function of going to a smaller building, [at Shea] you could whack it up so you’re doing 13 game plans, Sunday only, because you had so much more inventory to work with. It’s a balance, and we’re doing our best to strike it, and we haven’t yet finalized the plans, but I think we’ll have that shortly. We hear what you’re saying and we’re trying your best to balance this and make plans available for people that they will and enjoy.”

I started to run out of room on my magazine inserts (again had I known when I left the house that Dave Howard was gonna taklk to bloggers I might have brought a piece of paper.  I was lucky I had a pen.)

Greg from Faith & Fear asked if Promenade Plannies would be able to enter the Promenade Club.  They are looking at it.

Now I’m really out of cardspace and didn’t write down who asked what…the next question is about Saturday and Sunday often costing more than the Friday game.

Paraphrasing Dave….the process of ranking games are about peak demand.  Peak and Off-peak.  Summer is peak.  Weekends are peak.  Saturday and Sunday are more peak than Friday. The opponent factors in too.

All that makes sense to me.

Then, my favorite part (well except for the whole reading Mets Police and going to a game thing) was when Dave told us about the first Mets game he attended.  September 1965, midweek against the Pirates.  School was in session.  He was in kindergarten and fell in love with the team.  He met Ron Hunt, Cleon Jones, Buddy Harrelson and a fourth lesser known player whose name I missed.   He thought the game was in 64 but he spoke to Buddy about it and Buddy said he didn’t come up until September 65.  He still has pictures of it!

He thinks the Mets lost and there were about 3,000 people in the park.  That looks like 9/29/65 to me! I’l wait until Faith & Fear writes 10 pages about the game.  Greg probably randomly wrote about that very game like 5 years ago anyway.  He’s amazing.

There ya have it!

I found, as always, all the blognoscenti to be cool.  Nobody talked over each other.  Everyone was patient.  We all get along.  Everyone was professional….like I didn’t get on and was like “Yo so WTF with the hybrid caps?”   We’re actually a pretty responsible bunch.

Dave said we’d do it again…I look forward to it…and I will daydream about grabbing a beer and a dog sometime in ’11.  What should I wear?

…..

Here’s the important links from the latest news cycle.  I am including them here so they don’t get knocked off.

Official 2011 Ticket Prices and the official announcement

2011 Schedule with the color code that tells you which game is which tier

The season ticket holder benefits. You may not have seen this in mainstream because it’s long.  Good read.

Ceetar’s notes from Dave Howard on WFAN

and let’s not forget the weird Adam Rubin/Wally Backman thing.

…..

That’s a wrap from tonight (Wednesday).  I’m exhausted but I’m going to work on some more posts.

I posted a LOT of stuff today and things will get lost.   However we will get to what happened behind the scenes with the leak and my take on the ticket prices in the next cycle of surises and sunsets.

It has been a good week for Mets Police credibility.  As always I leave it to you to decide if you believe what you read here…but the next time I say “they read MP in Flushing” I ain’t kidding.

Thanks for reading everyone!

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