The Mets Are Cutting Ticket Prices

Mets season ticket money is due before anyone knows Jose Reyes' future

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    Everything's about Jose this offseason.

    The Mets made a rather sensible announcement about ticket prices for the 2011 season on Tuesday.

    The team announced that 80 percent of their season ticket holders would see a drop in prices of five percent or more come next season.

    That seems about the least that the team could do after finishing miles away from the playoffs for the third straight season while making very loud pronouncements about slashing their payroll.

    There's also going to be a new dynamic pricing model for single-game tickets that will price tickets based on market fluctuations over the course of the season.

    A combination of factors will affect the cost of tickets -- demand, impact, the secondary market -- and it is a step in a direction that other teams have taken in recent years.

    All of that sounds good, so let's just move along and get back to watching the baseball playoffs, right? Well, it's not quite that simple.

    The date to renew season tickets has been moved up from December 15th last year to November 7th this winter. That's a pretty significant difference because there's a pretty good chance that anyone chooisng to renew their tickets will have to make their decision without the slightest idea about what uniform Jose Reyes will be wearing next season.

    Anyone who buys season tickets does so without any guarantee about the quality of what they are going to purchase. The presence of Reyes, who is busy flashing his body in the ESPN magazine's nudie issue, doesn't mean that the Mets will be good, although his departure would do a lot to suggest that the team is going to be bad when they get back on the field come April.

    This wouldn't be a big deal if the Mets always asked for your money in the first week of November. The change forces you to ask why things are different this year.

    The Mets are making a lot of noise about additional benefits for renewing, adding club access and other bells and whistles, but the real reason behind the change in date seems pretty clear.

    It is hard to see this change in the renewal date as anything other than a ploy to guarantee the Mets revenue because they know that losing Reyes would mean disaster to new season ticket purchases as well as the single-game market.

    You probably can't read it as a message about internal thoughts when it comes to the chances of bringing Reyes back because it's just the most calculated business decision to make when there's a chance that Reyes isn't coming back.

    That's smart for the bank account, but you have to wonder how well it is going to work out.

    Until Reyes makes his decision, the Mets have nothing to sell.

    Josh Alper is a writer living in New York City. You can follow him on Twitter and he is also a contributor to Pro Football Talk.