Longest sellout streak in major pro sports comes to an end at Fenway Park


The Boston Red Sox sold out in a record 820 straight games at their famed Fenway Park. Photo by: Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau

The Boston Red Sox sold out in a record 820 straight games at their famed Fenway Park. Photo by: Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau

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There have been numerous boasts from professional sports teams across the world regarding sellout streaks. However, nobody really knew which ones were to be believed. One that was confirmed to be true was that of the Boston Red Sox of Major League Baseball. The ball team sold out 820 straight games at its home of Fenway Park before seeing that streak come to an end on April 10. It’s believed to be the longest sellout streak in major professional sports.

The streak didn’t end by just a few tickets though as the Red Sox saw it come to a conclusion with about 7,000 empty seats in the stands. The official capacity for evening games at the stadium is 37,493, but just 30,862 tickets were sold for their game against the Baltimore Orioles, which they dropped by a score of 8-5. The sellout streak started back in May of 2003 and it also included playoff games. The previous mark was set by the Portland Trail Blazers of the NBA. Portland managed to sell out 814 consecutive home games between 1977 and 1995.

When regular-season games only are taken into consideration, the Red Sox sold out 794 straight contests, which is also a major sports record. Boston demolished the old mark of 455 which the Cleveland Indians set between 1995 and 2001. John W. Henry, the owner of the Red Sox, said that the streak took place at the best ballpark in America and he thanks the Boston fans and players for it. He added that the franchise is looking forward to beginning a new streak and hopes fans in the area will also be able to enjoy their baseball at Fenway Park for generations tom come.

The exact date of the streak’s launch was May 15, 2003. The Red Sox hammered the Texas Rangers that day by a score of 12-3 with pitcher Pedro Martinez earning the win. There were 32,485 people in attendance for the game. However, the seating capacity at the stadium was increased after that. The average attendance during the sellout string was 36,605 fans per game.

Fenway Park opened way back in 1912 and there have been quite a few empty seats there over the last few seasons. Of course, some of these are fans who bought tickets and failed to show up for the games. The Red Sox sad the attendance based on the actual number of distributed tickets and not the number of people who show up. Boston won two World Series during the streak in 2004 and 2007, but haven’t made the playoffs in the last two seasons.

Larry Lucchino, the team’s president said the club is very proud of the achievement and said over 30 million fans have bought tickets to see the team play over the past 10 years. He added that the lowest crowd to actually show up during that time was at least 32,000 and not other MLB team can say the same thing.

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