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World Series Game 2: Phillies at Rays

24 October 2008 No Comment

Ideally I would be attending World Series games at Wrigley Field this weekend. However, when the Tampa Bay Rays made the World Series after beating the Boston Red Sox, the Ultimate Sports Wife and I decided to visit her family in Florida. Her family lives in Central Florida – less than a two hour drive from many major Florida cities – Orlando, Tampa, Jacksonville, Gainesville and Daytona Beach. So with the World Series coming to St. Petersburg, FL, we flew down to Florida for Game 2.

Obtaining Tickets
I did not wait to buy tickets outside of Tropicana Field before the game. My rule for championship games is that most transactions take place before everyone arrives at the stadium. Thus, there are either no tickets available or if there are tickets demand is greater than supply.

Instead, I bought tickets through craigslist.org. Initially, I checked my usual “market” sites (stubhub.com and ticketsnow.com). I realized that ticket prices continued to decline and actually wondered if we could buy tickets to the World Series for under face value. However, with ticket prices hovering between $170 and $200 for upper deck seats (face value was $100) I found an ad on craigslist for an upper deck single for $120. Normally if a price is too low, the poster will receive many responses and never reply to your email. However, the poster responded to my email within a few minutes.

In order to ensure the transaction (and tickets) were real I asked for his phone number to his first reply to my initial inquiry. He responded with a number and I continued to ask more personal questions with each reply. In each of his replies he answered my questions so I figured we had a “legit” transaction. In fact, he even had a second ticket available (making the total $250 for 2 tickets). With these tickets being the cheapest World Series tickets in years (not to mention this year’s SRO tickets in Philadelphia were selling for $600 each), the Ultimate Sports Wife decided she would attend her first World Series game.

I asked the poster if I should pay via PayPal and he could email me the TicketFast tickets. He said no and that he would meet us at the Orlando Airport when we arrived – enforcing the legitimacy of the sale.

The Exchange
We landed at Orlando Airport on Thursday morning. We met “Ed the Student” in front of the Dollar Rental Car counter. We asked if we could take his picture and he agreed.

Ticket Scalping Tip: If possible, try to take a picture of your ticket seller. If they are hawking fake tickets you at least have a picture of the culprit.

The Game
The Ultimate Sports Wife wrote about most of the details of our Game 2 experience. The Rays defeated the Phillies 4-2 in the 5th World Series game I have attended and one of the “perceived” most crowded. With the Rays experiencing one of their first 40,000+ crowds of the season, the concourses of the stadium were crowded and lines for concessions were extremely long before the game. Rather than wait in those lines, we found our seats.

In the middle of the 1st inning, I headed back to the food court on the first level. Since the Rays were batting, there were no lines for food. By the top of the 2nd inning, I was back in our seats with all of the necessary sustenance for the game – nachos with a lot of toppings, steak tips and a diet Pepsi.

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