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World champion Red Sox to inaugurate Baseball's 2008 season in Japan
11/14/2007 10:45 AM ET
2008 Red Sox schedule

BOSTON -- The Defending World Champion Boston Red Sox will open the 2008 regular season in historic fashion-playing the Oakland A's in Tokyo, Japan, in Major League Baseball's International Opener. The club will visit the homeland of two its star players from the 2007 World Championship team and play at the Tokyo Dome on Tuesday, March 25 and Wednesday, March 26 (times TBA). The traditional home opener at Fenway Park, which celebrates its 96th anniversary in 2008, will be Tuesday, April 8, at 2:05 p.m., against the Detroit Tigers.

"On behalf of John Henry, Tom Werner, and the entire ownership and organization, we are honored to be invited to represent Major League Baseball and open the 2008 MLB season in Japan, one of the greatest baseball nations of the world," said Red Sox President/CEO Larry Lucchino.

The club released its 2008 game and ticket price schedules today. Fans' first opportunity to purchase tickets for 2008 comes Saturday, December 8, at "Christmas at Fenway," with further details to be announced in the near future.

The Red Sox are scheduled to play a total of 72 games with their A.L. East Division rivals, 18 each with Baltimore, New York, Tampa Bay, and Toronto. The Sox and Yankees have three weekend series at Fenway Park, April 11-13; July 25-27; and the final three games of the regular season, September 26-28. Boston travels to Yankee Stadium for a four-game weekend series, July 3-6, and a pair of mid-week series, April 16-17 and August 26-28.

The Red Sox will open the regular season with seven road games, playing the A's twice each in Tokyo and Oakland followed by a three-game series in Toronto. Boston's first homestand, scheduled to run April 8-13, features three games each with the Tigers and Yankees. The Red Sox have a pair of season high nine-game homestands, June 3-12 with Tampa Bay, Seattle, and Baltimore, and July 25-August 3 with the Yankees, Angels, and A's.

Boston will have 18 games versus National League opponents, hosting Arizona, Milwaukee, and St. Louis for three games apiece while playing three-game series at Cincinnati, Houston, and Philadelphia. It will mark the Brewers' first visit to Boston since moving to the National League in 1998.

The Red Sox have scheduled the majority of their home day games (including Sundays) at 1:35 p.m. for 2008. The exceptions will be the home opener on Tuesday, April 8 with Detroit (2:05 p.m.) and Patriots Day on Monday, April 21 with Texas (TBA). Times for all Saturday home games will be determined once the FOX national television schedule is announced.

The Red Sox do not play at Fenway on Mothers Day, Fathers Day, Memorial Day, Flag Day, Independence Day, and even Bastille Day and Labor Day.

After not increasing non-premium ticket prices in 2007 (82% of all tickets stayed at the same price in 2007 as in 2006), the Red Sox will raise ticket prices in most areas of the ballpark for 2008. The club will, however, continue to invest its revenue in the Year VII Improvements to Fenway Park and to its formidable roster of uniformed personnel at both the major league and minor league levels. The improvements for 2008 include more seats and standing room, thereby increasing the supply for which demand is so strong in the oldest and smallest ballpark in baseball. The 2008 improvements to Fenway Park will cost approximately $40-45 million.

The lowest price tickets available to the public, Upper Bleachers, remain unchanged at $12. Also unchanged are the other most affordable tickets. General Standing Room tickets remain at $20, and although Lower Bleachers rise $3 to $26, Conigliaro's Corner stays at $25, as do Pavilion Standing Room. Remaining at $30 are the existing Standing Room tickets on the Green Monster and Right Field Roof Deck, regardless of the opponent. Prices will also be held at $90 on Pavilion Box seats, located on the exclusive State Street Pavilion.

Pricing and distribution methods for Green Monster and Right Field Roof tickets will be announced after the new year, in accordance with past practices.

With an overall increase of approximately 9%, several of the categories are increasing for the first time since 2005 (Lower Bleachers, Infield and Outfield Grandstands, Right Field Box and Roof Box). The area of greatest increase is the area of greatest demand, the Field Boxes, which rise to $125 (though less if a season holder renews by the early payment deadline, December 19; nearly all of the Field Box seats are season tickets).

"We are conscious of the investment that Red Sox fans make in their beloved team," Lucchino said. "That's in part why there was no increase on non-premium seats last year, and that's why we continue to hold the line this year on the lower priced tickets throughout the ballpark. That's also why we are adding more seats along first base and third base for 2008, quality seats that nonetheless should be affordable for most when they come on board.

"We recognize what a great demand there is for a small supply; that's why we continue to invest almost every year in increasing the supply."

"In 2008, we will continue to add premium value to the best field boxes in baseball," Lucchino said. "Among the additional amenities for 2008 will be the assignment of a dedicated client services team, a priority individual game presale, and additional conveniences and amenities. (Field Box Lounges are also in the plans for 2009-2010).

"Fans can be sure as well that we will invest again as we assemble a major league team and a minor league system that are worthy of their support. We are hungry, and we are eager to sustain this momentum, to enjoy this enthusiasm, and to reward these fans again in 2008. Their investment makes such World Championships possible. Our players know it, and we know it."

The first International Opener first occurred nine years ago, when the 1999 Defending National League Champion San Diego Padres, of which Red Sox Chairman Tom Werner was part owner and Lucchino was President/CEO, opened the season in Monterrey, Mexico, against the Colorado Rockies.

The 2008 Ticket Price Schedules are laid out below, and the 2008 Game Schedule is attached.

RED SOX 2008 SCHEDULE BY OPPONENTS BREAKDOWN

TeamHomeRoad
Baltimore Orioles99
Chicago White Sox34
Cleveland Indians42
Detroit Tigers 34
Kansas City Royals 43
Los Angeles Angels 63
Minnesota Twins34
New York Yankees 99
Oakland A's 37
Seattle Mariners36
Tampa Bay Devil Rays99
Texas Rangers73
Toronto Blue Jays99
Interleague Games
Arizona Diamondbacks30
Cincinnati Reds03
Houston Astros03
Milwaukee Brewers30
Philadelphia Phillies03
St. Louis Cardinals30

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


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