June 20, 2013

Sea Dogs' stats steady in season 20, Eshbach says

By Edward D. Murphy emurphy@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 1)

click image to enlarge

Sea Dogs president Charlie Eshbach says attendance was nearly double what he expected when he first took the reins.

John Ewing/Staff Photographer

Q: What's the break-even point?

A: One, I haven't figured it out, and two, if I had, I wouldn't say. But we've been profitable every year. We's a business and some years are better than others, but we have been profitable every year.

Q: How important is the affiliation with the Red Sox versus other teams?

A: It's obviously the natural affiliation for us. We started off with the Marlins and did very well, but the Red Sox are the team that most people care about in Maine. With the Red Sox, we went from selling out to selling out faster.

Q: What kind of impact does it have when a veteran Red Sox player comes here to recover from an injury and start playing ball again?

A: A few years back (David) Ortiz was here on a rehab stint and they announced it (the assignment) on a Saturday at 4 p.m. Our ticket office was closed by then because the Sea Dogs were out of town at the time. We had about 2,500 tickets left, so I was driving in on Monday and called the ticket office and I said, "Are you ready for this?" And they said, "There's not much to be ready for -- between Saturday and Monday morning, all the tickets sold out online."

Q: This is the Sea Dogs' 20th season. What has surprised you most during the team's two decades?

A: The very first year surprised the heck out of me. Dan Burke brought me in because I was considered the "expert on minor league baseball" and I thought we might sell 250,000 tickets the first year and need six people (to run the team). We ended up selling about 400,000 tickets and the staff doubled. It's been a much better success than I thought it would be.

Edward D. Murphy can be contacted at 791-6465 or at:

emurphy@pressherald.com

 

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