Stephen Strasburg Mania Hits Fever Pitch
CNBC Sports Business Reporter
With an incredible 14-strikeout win in his much heralded debut, the business of Stephen Strasburg can only heat up from here.
As we mentioned Tuesday, this will give the Washington Nationals a continued bump in attendance that could be worth more than $5 million if he starts for the rest of the season.
Yesterday, we suggested that the fans will calm down and the boost he'll give the team will be more like 15,000 a game, instead of the 18,756 jump in fans he provided last night. But now we're thinking that if Strasburg stays hot, 18,000 fans per game might be easy to do—especially if it's on a weekend and not against the Pirates!
So who's next to cash in off Strasburg?
Collectors who have his limited edition cards to sell obviously will continue to make great money for the time being. I doubt we'll see anything close to the 1/1 Strasburg card that sold on eBay for $16,000 a couple weeks ago, but this guy is doing his best to revive an absolutely dead card industry. Topps has already set up a Strasburg autograph store,with a signed ball already commanding $275.
Major League Baseball teams will also cash in on Strasburg's jersey sales, as revenue from the sales are split among all the clubs. We're not sure we're willing to pay $259 for the authentic Strasburg jerseyyet, but the jersey T-shirt they posted this morning seems reasonable.
Major League Baseball is also selling Strasburg's second strikeout ball signed by Strasburg himself. The ball is already going for $1,000 and there's six days left in the auction
Don't forget about the teams hoping to sell tickets for Strasburg on the road. The Cleveland Indians, who have the worst attendance in the league, are presumably Strasburg's next opponent this weekend. They need Strasburg to pitch there more than the Nationals needed him. You have to wonder if the Indians are in the position to force fans to buy ticket packages to get the Strasburg game.
Then there's the hamburger joints selling a "Strasburger." As of this writing, there are three places selling such a dish , but I guarantee you they'll be 10 by next week. For what it's worth, a place called the Burger Joint promised to add a pickle onto its Strasburger for every strikeout he threw last night. I hope that was a one-time thing. Not sure I'd want a burger with 14 pickles!
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