While Mets fans root for the players underneath the home dugout roof at Citi Field this season, many will be able to see their own names over that same roof.
The team’s ticket sales department unveiled a new perk for its full and partial season ticket holders this season, allowing them to have their names (or companies) listed as part of the designs on top of each dugout.
“We’re always looking for ways to show our appreciation for season ticket holders,” said Chris Zaber, senior vice president of ticket sales. “They’re the lifeblood of any organization. Ours is no different.”
Zaber said he has seen similar designs elsewhere in sports. The Washington Wizards in 2014-15 incorporated names of season ticket holders into a logo on their court’s baseline.
The Mets were looking for a creative location to do something similar.
“We came across the idea of changing the graphic on both of our dugouts,” he said. “That’s the genesis of the concept.”
Full, half and 20-game season planholders were eligible to be included, but had to give their OK to opt in, and had to be signed up by early December.
Zaber said each account could request a corporate name or an individual person or people’s names, within a set character limit. “Then we double-checked the list to make sure there was nothing nefarious we wouldn’t want put on there,” he said.
Most people used personal names, but some asked for company ones to be displayed.
Zaber said he did not know the exact number included. “Thousands, as you can imagine,” he said.
The designs are the same for each dugout, and a third, smaller replica will be displayed at the Season Ticket Holder Clubhouse in centerfield to provide easier access for fans to see their names.
Only fans whose tickets normally give them access to the area right behind the dugout will be able to view the design up close; others will have to settle for viewing the replica in the outfield clubhouse.
The visiting dugout had just been completed last Thursday during a Citi Field event to showcase the stadium’s new food offerings and ballpark amenities.
Zaber said the reaction to the offer “was as positive as we expected it to be.” The idea is to do it every year, which will require making new dugout tops to reflect changes in the ticket holder roster.
“That’s our expectation,” Zaber said, “that we will continue this for years to come.”