A few of my friends who attended Seattle Mariners and Seahawks games recently made the observation that there seem to be more drunk,unruly fans.
It’s not exactly something new they say, just a lot worse than in past years.
If you’re a sports fan, you’ve seen them: Obnoxious ticketholders with too much to drink hurling F-bombs right and left with a family of kids sitting two seats away.
This has been an issue with the NFL, where in some stadiums, fights and injuries are commonplace. “60 Minutes” aired a story last year about how season ticket holders were giving up their seats because they don’t want to subject their kids to drunk and unruly fans.
But baseball? Hey, I guess there are enough fans at Safeco Field willing to shell out $7 for a beer or two or three or four or more. And maybe that’s why there isn’t enough incentive to prevent fans getting intoxicated: When you can charge that much for beer, why hold down sales?
Here in Portland, the Trail Blazers do a great job of monitoring alcohol consumption, and I don’t think I’ve seen an intoxicated fan at one of the Blazer games in years.
And that’s the solution right there: Teams need to make it clear that they’re putting strict limits on beer sales, and that they have zero tolerance with drunk fans. And if enough fans – and sponsors – start griping about the ugly, un-family-like atmosphere at the games, management will start taking action.
It’s called prevention.