Marlins become first team to offer Groupon discounts in inaugural year of stadium

Florida fans-disguised-as-empty-seats watch: Crain’s Cleveland notes that not only did the first-in-the-A.L.-East-wild-card, last-in-attendance Tampa Bay Rays play before only 9,900 paying fans on Monday, but the Miami Marlins are offering $40 tickets for $19 on Groupon. This in a year that, while things on the field haven’t exactly gone as planned, is the debut year of a new stadium with all the bells and whistles and, um, stuff. And while selling some tickets on Groupon isn’t necessarily a harbinger of doom, doing so when you’re en route to setting a record for lowest attendance in a new stadium is decidedly more harbingery.

Crain’s, meanwhile, name-checks me, concluding: “This certainly will be Field of Schemes’ top example going forward of the dangers of using public money for private enterprise.” Oh, I only wish.

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