So in the span of about a month, I have given up season tickets to both the Redskins and the Nationals. Before I continue, I should define what I mean by season tickets. To me, it means a plan that includes several games over the course of the season. In the case of the Redskins, it was the entire season. In the case of the Nationals, it was a 20 game plan. There were a number of issues that came up to help to make these decisions. Economy and the performance of the team were common in both, but there were others specific to the teams and sports.
Over the course of my post-college adult life, I have owned or been part of a group that owned tickets to the Redskins, Nationals, Orioles, Capitals, and Terps Men's Basketball. I'm down to just the Terps now. My alma mater holds a great place in my life, and they could be in a losing season...I'll still watch them anytime.
For the Orioles and Capitals, it came to distance and time commitments respectively. Baltimore is not that far, but committing to every Sunday game (and for awhile, several weeknight games as well), just wasn't great. The nail in the coffin for the Orioles was when the Nationals arrived in town. The Capitals are a great ticket to have, but my work got in the way and I just could not commit to any games ahead of time to justify keeping those tickets.
The Nationals was easy. The 20 game plan was not onerous. We even actually split the tickets so I was only obligated to about 10 games a season. But in reality, why should I prepay for games they decide I should buy when I can show up on virtually any gameday, 10 minutes before first pitch to buy the exact same seats and probably have a 90% chance of getting them? It sounds harsh, and I'm becoming what the team does not need...a fan who barely spends money on them. Note to the Lerners, I'm probably not the only one.
The Redskins was much tougher, yet was easily justifiable. I once had season tickets in the upper level for a couple of seasons during the Norv Turner era. Then I had given up until a friend decided he was interested in getting premium seats (lower level). So for the past few seasons, we have been 20-30 rows from the field, in the end zone, cheering on those fans. This past season, we were upgraded to the club level to test out the seats there. But ultimately, it was not enough to keep our interest. Besides some personal issues, the Redskins simply don't have the draw any longer. The price was not justified and while the fan experience there is great, watching games on TV is almost as good as being there. After you weigh in parking, getting there, and the simple hassle of possibly not sitting an entire half, it was too easy a thing to drop.
One day, I hope to reacquire some of these tickets. I may sound like a fair weather fan, but a dozen or so Terps games is plenty. Add in the occassional ticket I'll be purchasing as a one-off game for all these teams, I'll still end up going to 25 or so sporting events live each year. Which means I'll essentially creating my own season plan.