The Cincinnati Reds last week laid off “a handful” of front office employees and canceled plans to hire several additional staffers to handle pre-season administrative chores.
The cuts were in response to lower-than-expected revenue from pre-season ticket packages.
“Our volume is really good, but people are buying smaller plans. So, in response to that, we’re tightening up,” said Karen Forgus, senior vice president of business operations for the Reds.
The number of layoffs represented less than 5 percent of the Major League Baseball team’s front office work force, which typically ranges from 138 to 150 people during the year, Forgus said. The team has not lowered its ticket sales projection for the 2009 season, during which the Reds expect to draw more than 2 million fans.
That estimate could be revised based on the results of the Reds’ “Power Pack” sales initiative, in which fans can purchase 10 games in advance, including Opening Day.
“The wolf is not at the door,” Forgus said. “People are telling us they’re still going to come to games. They’re just going to buy them during the season.”