Detroit Tigers fans are being encouraged to buy their tickets early this year.

Individual game tickets go on sale Saturday morning.

Fans who wait to buy tickets could end up paying more for seats. That's because the Tigers are introducing dynamic ticket pricing this season.

Once the season begins, market factors including opponent, weather, pitching matchups, team performance and day of the week will drive the price of a single ticket up.

'That's the free market we live in.' - Marijke Taks, sports marketing professor

Marijke Taks, a sports management professor at the University of Windsor,  says dynamic pricing may squeeze some fans out of the games they want to see.

"But that's the free market we live in. I mean why would an organization like the Detroit Tigers not tap into an opportunity?" Taks said. "I think it's a way that most teams will go in the future."

Detroit isn't the first Major League Baseball to use dynamic pricing.

The Chicago Cubs, Chicago White Sox, Colorado Rockies, New York Mets and San Diego Padres are a few ball teams to already use the market-driving pricing model.

Teams already charge more for "premium games," which feature more high-profile teams such as the New York Yankees.
Dynamic pricing goes one step beyond that.

Bob Reaume sells ticket packages at his sports store.

"When you get later in the season, where some of these games may become bigger and you can see it coming, well if you wait too long it could cost you more," Reaume said.

The Tigers say season ticket prices will not be affected by dynamic pricing.

“Dynamic pricing is based on consumer demand and generally affords fans who buy early to save more,” said Duane McLean, executive vice president of business operations. “With dynamic pricing you could see the value of ticket prices increase and decrease based on demand.

"Season tickets are not affected by dynamic pricing and continue to offer the most significant savings whereas dynamic pricing more accurately prices tickets for individual games.”

Dynamic pricing works similarly to, an online marketplace where tickets are bought and sold at prices determined by the market.

Taks said dynamic pricing provides opportunities on lower-valued games for families who otherwise might not attend.

More than 400,000 tickets for the 2014 Detroit Tigers' season will be priced at $20 or less when tickets go on sale Saturday at 10 a.m.