Blue Jays' surge pushing up resale ticket prices

The Blue Jays' recent surge in the baseball standings means fans will likely have to dig deeper if they're trying to buy a ticket on the resale market.
As the Blue Jays have climbed in the standings, so has the cost of their tickets on the resale market. (Nathan Denette/Canadian Press)

The Blue Jays' return to playoff contention is a great thing for Toronto baseball fans, except for the ones looking to buy a ticket on the resale market.

Cameron Papp of the ticket resale site StubHub told CBC News the Jays' nine-game win streak and big moves at the trade deadline are pushing up ticket prices.

"Blue Jays tickets are selling like crazy," Papp said. "Last week was our highest selling week for Blue Jays tickets for the season. We expect this week to be even higher."

The Blue Jays haven't been to the playoffs since they last won a World Series back in 1993. Only a few weeks ago, it appeared Toronto was a good bet to miss the playoffs yet again, until the team traded for five-time all-star shortstop Troy Tulowitzki on July 28

The next day, the Jays made another big splash, trading for starting pitcher David Price, a Cy Young award winner.

Since those trades, the Blue Jays have been the hottest team in baseball. Last night's 4-2 win over Oakland lifted Toronto to within half a game of the New York Yankees for the American League East division lead heading into play Wednesday.

Papp said Blue Jays tickets generally sell for $30 to $35 for a mid-level seat.

Those prices, particularly for the three-game series against the Yankees that starts on Thursday, have doubled in the past 10 days. He said demand for the Yankees series has exceeded Opening Day. The series is sold out, forcing fans without tickets to pursue seats on the secondary market where they are likely to find prices not seen since in years. 

"It's going to be the biggest series of the season so far," said Papp.

One ticket sold for $1,000

One ticket for the Yankees series at Rogers Centre was posted on StubHub with an asking price of $11,000, but Papp cautions that this is only an asking price.

"Any seller that's asking $11,000 for a ticket is trying to win the lottery," said Papp. "We've never seen a ticket for a regular-season baseball game sell that high, expect for maybe  Derek Jeter's retirement game."

He said one fan paid about $1,000 for a prime dugout ticket for Friday's game against the Yankees.

"It's really an exciting time for Toronto," he said. "It's always exciting when you see a team that hasn't been successful over a few years get back into the playoffs. You see a town rally around [the team]. It's a good sports town and a lot of fans are excited."


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