Chicago Cubs replace fans with advertising in bleachers

(Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images)
(Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images) /

The Chicago Cubs have replaced fans with advertising–circa 2015. With no fans allowed, it’s the fastest way to recoup the ticket sales that they won’t be getting from COVID-19.

The Chicago Cubs and the COVID-19 pandemic have prevented all 30 teams from selling tickets to their games. But have no fear. The Cubs have an ‘alternate’ source of income. Bleacher advertising. The green canvas panels–seven of them–cover the bottom part of the left-field bleachers and most of the right-field bleachers.

It takes us back to 2015 when the bleachers weren’t finished, and the Cubs’ Ernie Banks passed away. It was nothing to the COVID-19 pandemic to what we’re experiencing now. But back then, when there was nothing in the line of bleacher tickets–at least temporarily. Banks had the front stage.

I got to say; this is the smartest move with the bleachers–and ticket sales–not bringing in any money. The seven signs, for now, will bring in a chunk of change. But to be honest, not selling tickets will be ‘bad for business.’ Almost 40K–give or take? Gone. Plus the familiar ‘family of four’? They’re likely to spend it on food, drink, souvenirs and more. That’s gone, as well. So the advertising ads–and that’s it? Good grief.

They also built extended dugouts–both sides–complete with wooden roofs over seating sections. With social distancing in place and having them not to sit in the box seats? It was a good plan. And 30 players to start the season?

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"“That was a concern of ours,” manager David Ross said. “Sitting on a bench is way different than sitting in an actual seat in the stands. You’re going to want to be active. You’re going to want to be able to get up and move around. You’re going to want to go down to the cage and take some swings. h/t Mark Gonzales, Chicago Tribune"

Now, Anthony Rizzo? He’s a bleacher bum. Okay, he was resting from rib cage inflammation. And he says he’s ready to go for Opening Day–in July–but he’s going to be there.