business news in context, analysis with attitude

The has a terrific story this week about the high price of beer in America's major league baseball stadiums, concluding that "Major League Baseball's average price for a small beer has risen from $5.81 in 2011 to $6.12 this year. At this time in 2011, the highest price for a small beer was the $7.25 the Boston Red Sox were charging at Fenway Park. This year five teams have exceeded that price, with two teams breaking the $8 barrier."

The 10 most expensive ballparks for beer - rating the price of a small draft - are AT&T Park in San Francisco ($6.75), Busch Stadium in St. Louis ($6.75), Turner Field in Atlanta ($7.25), Wrigley Field in Chicago ($7.25), Fenway Park in Boston ($7.25), Rogers Center in Toronto ($7.34), Target Field in Minneapolis ($7.50), Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia ($7.75), Marlins Park ($8), and, selling the most expensive small draft beer in Major League Baseball, Nationals Park in Washington, DC ($8.25).


I do think it is instructive that several of the ballparks charging the most for beer happen to be stadiums that have no sold their naming rights, which means they are missing a source of revenue that other owners have. Not sure this is cause-and-effect, but that stood out to me immediately.

Also, I don't know about you, but I was more than a little surprised not to see Yankee Stadium or Citi Field on the list. Frankly, I'll pay more for a beer if it'll get the Mets a better outfield. I would've paid more for a beer if it would've allowed the Mets to keep RA Dickey.

I also have to say that while the beer costs are going up, sometimes staggeringly so, reading the list made me feel one very specific desire - to be at the ballpark, sitting in the stands on a sunny day, sipping a cold one and nibbling on a hot dog, watching the game unfold without thinking about much of anything else.

Baseball - the most important thing that doesn't matter.

Just finished a terrific novel - "City of Thieves," by David Benioff, the accomplished author of "The 25th Hour" as well as a screenwriter who contributes to "Game of Thrones" on HBO.

"City of Thieves" takes place during World War II, during the siege of Leningrad, and is framed as his grandfather's memories of being the 17-year-old Lev Beniov, caught between childhood and adulthood and trying to survive the Nazi invasion. Through a series of circumstances, Lev - and a Russian army deserter, Kolya - are charged with finding a dozen eggs in the war-torn city that the local commander can use in his daughter's wedding cake. "City of Thieves" is a wonderful adventure story, a coming-of-age novel, and an indictment of war, all pulled together in a page-turning novel that I enjoyed immensely.

Finally, my wine of the week is Field Stone's 2009 Convivio red wine, a blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, and Sangiovese that is lovely, smooth and a bargain at around $14 ... Just great!

That's it for this week. have a great weekend, and I'll see you Monday.

KC's View: