I found an interesting note in my inbox from the Cubs this morning.  For the “FIRST TIME EVER”, the Cubs are selling 4-game Holiday Gift Packs that start as low as $92*.  Looks like Ricketts are really starting to make their mark on the franchise with fan-friendly deals like this. Seems like a good PR move to throw the fans a bone considering the team is not going to be very good next year and they just proposed taking state money to renovate Wrigley Field (which, incidentally, I’m not totally against, but that’s the subject for another post).

But then that little * after the $92 caught my eye so I started looking for the fine print.  That price applies to one pack IF you purchase two.  So it’s really $184 for eight Upper Deck Reserved Outfield seats.  That’s fine, I wouldn’t want to buy just one pack anyway—no biggie.  But then I started doing some math—not my strong suit, but this seemed easy enough.  That’s $23 per ticket.  Being an almost exclusively bleacher-bound Wrigley attendee, I wasn’t sure what an Upper Deck Reserved Outfield seat usually cost so I looked it up.  To my astonishment, Upper Deck Reserved Outfield seats went for as low as $8 (for the shit games on Mondays or Tuesdays against teams like the Pirates that no one cares about) and only as high as $22 for “Platinum Dates.” Wait a minute, am I missing something?

At this point I had to take a deep breath and think. Maybe the games are better than platinum?  But what’s better than platinum?  Apparently, the Cubs believe shit is because that’s what they’re shoveling.  Of the 28 dates between the 7 different Holiday Pack plans, 23 are April or September dates which are virtually guaranteed to be the coldest and least meaningful months to go to a Cubs game in 2011.  21 of 28 are Mon, Tues, or Wednesdays. Not a single White Sox, Cardinals or inter-league game is included in any pack. Mostly mediocre games vs. the Diamondbacks and Padres appear instead.

Charging a buck more than the face value of the best possible games while offering mostly bad dates against mediocre opponents must mean there is some kind of an added bonus, right?   Right!

As an added bonus, upon completion of your Holiday Pack order, you will have the chance to purchase Cubs Dollars at a discounted rate. Cubs Dollars can be used to purchase souvenirs and concessions inside of Wrigley Field and would make the perfect compliment to tickets for any Cubs game.

Wow. Thanks. I guess that “discounted rate” means I can get my dollar back when I buy a foam finger or cotton candy. But I’m not really sure, I can only find out what that part of the “deal” is after I spend at least $184 plus the minimum amount I can spend on your crappy Cubs cash.

But I think their marketing campaign irks me the most.  If I made a Cubs wish list, there’s only one thing I’d put on it.