CHICAGO (AP) — Major League Baseball Advanced Media and StubHub.com announced a new five-year deal Monday that continues the website's role as the official secondary ticket market for the sport while eliminating the cheap listings that had become an eyesore for some clubs.
The minimum price for baseball tickets on StubHub in 2013 will be $6, a far more appealing number for the league after some seats were listed for pocket change during the first five-year deal that expired after this past season.
The $6 ticket includes commissions and the delivery fee for the website, which previously charged customers at least $10.40 after they selected their seats.
"The bottom line is that we felt like for both our fans and for our teams there was an optics issue," StubHub spokesman Glenn Lehrman said. "In other words, there was a lot of chatter about .99 tickets, cheap tickets, and the reality is that's not what the ticket was selling for."
StubHub calls including the fees in the ticket listing an "all-in pricing model," and Lehrman said the San Francisco-based company has been testing the system on the website all year long, mostly with Major League Soccer games. The plan is to implement the new format across the site by the end of 2013.
Bob Bowman, the CEO of MLBAM, the interactive media and Internet company of Major League Baseball, praised StubHub for working with them to address their concerns. But the changes weren't enough for the New York Yankees, Los Angeles Angels and Chicago Cubs, three teams that opted out of the deal.
"We're continuing to explore our options in the secondary ticket market," said Julian Green, the vice president for communication and community affairs with the Cubs.
The Yankees and Angels are working with Ticketmaster on a new arrangement, according to a person familiar with the situation, and will announce their plan in a few weeks. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because no official announcement has been made.
Fans will still be able to purchase tickets for the three missing teams on StubHub. The biggest difference involves the sellers, who will have to type in the ticket information and use a different way to get the ticket to the buyer for the home games of the Yankees, Cubs and Angels.