The Milwaukee Brewers are moving and shaking this off-season. First was the Christian Yelich trade, then (moments later) came the Lorenzo Cain signing. There is also a rumor that the Brewers offered a 9-figure contract to Yu Darvish. But the big news of the day involves ticket sales.

The Brewers are holding a pre-sale for Chicago Cubs-Brewers games at Miller Park this season with the explicit purpose of keeping Cubs fans out of Miller Park. This is a good thing.

The Brewers have an obligation to their fans to create an experience you can only have by attending a game in person. Ideally, this experience will entice fans to come back to the ballpark. Cubs games at Miller Park do not fit this criterion. We’re all adults here, but it’s still annoying to attend a game and have the majority of fans rooting against your team; especially in your home stadium. Nobody wants to spend a lot of money to be annoyed for four hours, which also happens to be a reason why Brewers fans stay home when the Cubs are in town.

Could this problem also be solved by Brewers fans buying tickets to these games? In theory, yes. In practice, not really. The Chicago metropolitan area has 8 million more people than Milwaukee. The sheer volume of Cubs fans in close proximity is enough to overwhelm a spike in the enthusiasm of Brewers fans. The deck needs to be stacked in the favor of Brewers fans to take back Miller Park.

Whether the presale to Wisconsin residents actually improves the Cubs-to-Brewers fan ratio is to be seen. There is also the matter of unintended consequences, such as tickets to these games being more expensive on the resale market. Regardless of these concerns, it is refreshing to see the Brewers take a tangible step to improve the gameday experience for fans of the Brew Crew.

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