Photo from Ken Ritz
Ken Ritz and son
WALKER, Mich. (WZZM) -- The weather put a major damper on the Detroit Tigers game last night. Fans were majorly disappointed after learning game four was rained out.
WZZM 13 photojournalist Ken Ritz is one of those fans. Earlier this week he decided to go to the game and take one of his sons and his parents.
"Monday morning, I got the bright idea, 'why not take my son to a playoff game? He's a big Tigers fan and so am I, so I thought let's try it'," he said "The fact that they were up two games and this could be the clincher game. I planned it out thinking they go to the World Series after winning this game. So that is part of my plan to go to this game because of that."
Ritz immediately started surfing the internet for tickets looking for good seats at the right price. He hoped to spend no more than $100 dollars per ticket.
"Yes, tickets are very expensive. I looked at getting them from the Tigers box office and they were probably double or triple what they are for a regular season game, but they were sold out anyway. So, I went to Craigslist. They were a little too expensive. They were even more overpriced, so I tried Stub Hub and I got 4 tickets for $118 a piece and after tax it turned out to be $127 a piece. So, for four tickets for me my mom, my dad and son was a little over $500. I went a little bit over budget but this is a once and a couple years thing, so I am cool with it. If they win they go to the World Series, so it is special."
Ritz admits his seats in the outfield bleachers are what one would consider average seats. For what's considered good seats fans have to pay a pretty penny.
"I remember seeing a ticket from the '84 world series with the Tigers and they were $8, $9 or $10," said Ritz. "And face value of these is like $110. So in almost $20 years it is gone up a lot."
And, while fans can budget their money for such an event they can not control the weather. Ironically, after all of Ritz work finding tickets the ALCS Game 4 was eventually called off due to rain.
"When we got to Detroit, the weather was great, it was like 70 degrees out, but it was dark so we couldn't tell if it was cloudy or not," said Ritz. "Then 10 minutes before the game was supposed to start, I kind of noticed there were no players in the dugout or pitchers warming up so we kind of knew the rain was coming. About 8 o'clock a big sign came up on the board that said the game has been delayed."
He says around 9:30 Wednesday night fans officially got the disappointing news.
"They finally made an announcement saying out tickets were ok for tomorrow's game at 4:07 p.m.. I will be able to go back, but I am pretty lucky. We heard a lot of people complaining that they had to work or they won't be able to go back. It is kind of a raw deal for some people."
According to Ritz the crowd was disappointed but did not get rowdy.
"A few people booed when the announcement came up, but it was pretty civilized and people understood," he said. "People were wondering why it was delayed because it was not raining. We were sitting there and it was a great night like I said. It was nice breeze and all of a sudden the game was delayed and we were like 'it is not raining.' It never rained until we got in the car and were driving back. It rained the whole drive home."
Ritz, a diehard fan, says in this is the first time he's ever had to deal with a rainout, but he's keeping a positive attitude and looking forward to seeing them play.
"But, you know it is going to cost us another tank of gas and another $30 to park," he said. "This is the 1st time I've ever had to deal with the rainout. It happens. I try not to think of it as too terrible of a thing and kind of a fun story we will be able to tell hopefully down the road."