After almost ten years of Fenway Park being filled to the brim for every home game, the Red Sox announced Wednesday that their sellout streak has come to an end. The streak that started on May 15, 2003, lasted 794 regular season games and, including playoffs, 820.
The streak was a record across all four major sports leagues, surpassing the previous mark of 814 set by the NBA’s Portland Trail Blazers from 1977 to 1995. The previous MLB record was held by the Cleveland Indians, who sold out 455 consecutive games from 1995 to 2001.
Fenway Park, which has a capacity of 37,493, drew only 30,862 to Wednesday night’s 5-2 loss to the Baltimore Orioles. The ballpark never had a capacity of less than 32,000 for the duration of the streak.
The team took to Twitter to announce that the streak had ended and to thank fans.
“@RedSox: Tonight marks conclusion of 794 straight sell outs & 820 w/ postseason at Fenway Park. Both are the longest in Major League sports”
“@RedSox: From all of us, we thank you for your commitment, devotion, & loyalty to the #RedSox.”
In a team press release, all three owners released statements about the significance of the streak.
Principal Owner John W. Henry: “"The streak is a reflection of a phenomenal period of baseball in Boston and of America's greatest ballpark, but more than that, it is a testament to the baseball passion of New England fans. As we close the book on this incredible era, we look forward to another with a renewed certainty that the next couple of generations of Red Sox fans will also be enjoying baseball at the ever magical Fenway Park."
President/CEO Larry Lucchino: “We are proud of this historic achievement. “Over the past ten years, more than 30 million, many among the most sophisticated baseball fans in America, have purchased tickets to see games at Fenway Park. Never in that period was there a crowd less than 32,000. No other club in Major League Baseball can make that statement. That speaks volumes about the constancy and dedication of New England baseball fans."
Chairman Tom Werner: “"We have all experienced a wonderful combination of compelling baseball, a revitalized ballpark, and an atmosphere of warmth and hospitality. I'd like to thank publicly our players, coaches, managers, our architects, our designers and construction workers, and our front office and day of game ballpark staff. Their work, together, connected with Red Sox Nation-passionate fans who helped take this team and this park to these heights. It is these fans to whom we are most grateful."