Is It Time to Boycott the Cactus League?

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Spring training baseball is an iconic part of Arizona. Every February to the end of March, people descend from around the country to escape winter and watch their favorite teams in a relaxed atmosphere, and us locals have ourselves a good reason to go see an inexpensive ballgame in beautiful weather. Even if we don’t care about the outcome, that’s not the point; it’s a ballgame in a wonderful setting with friends and family at a cost that doesn’t break the bank.

Except…now it is breaking the bank, as many people are noticing.

Stories have been circulating about the egregious prices of games these days, with single seats routinely above $30 per seat with fees, with concession costs matching the Big Leagues as opposed to being approachable and friendly, and costs for a family of four approaching hundreds of dollars for a game that precious few actually care about.

The great thing about Spring Training is that it was a venue to allow you to bring your family without it being a significant financial burden, or you going out with your friends and not having to see it as a substitute for a night out. It was affordable…now? Not so much.

Us regular folks have precious few avenues to make our grievances heard in a material way. Sure, we can complain about it on social media, send sternly worded letters, heckle the concessionaires (although you shouldn’t do the latter, they don’t set the prices). And we do believe in the greater good of capitalism and the free market. But the free market demands buyers along with sellers, and one of the few powers that the consumer has these days is banding together and saying that enough is enough.

Do you think that sounds like feel-good bull? Take a look at Bud Light and how badly their brand took a hit when it was clear that they were not listening to their target customer and went astray. They learned the hard way.

Let’s be real: the only way they will listen to you and I is if we hurt their bottom line. By saying that enough is enough and speaking with our wallets. Do you get as much enjoyment from Spring Training games as your spending? If you are like us and the answer is no, then the best response is to take your money elsewhere and tell them precisely why.

If they want our business, they should figure out how to win it back.