The current’s Dodgers/Diamondbacks series was promoted by the hosts as “Beat LA Weekend”, a marketing scheme that if nothing else, seems to ignore the Giants’ status as defending champs. Arizona’s won a World Series far more recently than L.A., but it’s doubtful you’ll be hearing about a “Beat The D-Backs” promotion at Chavez Ravine anytime in the near future.
Perhaps with this manufactured rivalry in mind, last night Arizona owner Ken Kendrick (above, third from left) demanded that a group of Dodgers fans decked out in their club’s gear change their clothing or face ejection from a suite behind home plate at Chase Field. From The Arizona Republic’s Nick Piecoro :
The fans agreed, changing into Diamondbacks merchandise provided by the team, Diamondbacks spokesman Josh Rawitch said, adding that the fans would have been refunded had they chose to be relocated.
Rawitch said that because of the high visibility of the seats, the team has a policy forbidding fans from wearing opposing team’s gear before they purchase the suite, which ranges in price from $3,250 to $3,500 depending on the night.
“We don’t tell them they can’t cheer for the other team,” Rawitch said. “We just ask them to adhere to the policy that we give them when we sell them the tickets.”
Though the stadium was publicly funded, the Diamondbacks say they have the right to dictate what fans do and do not wear, just as teams can determine whether fans are allowed to bring signage into stadiums.
“It sounds kind of small-minded, but I would think they probably have the legal right to do that, especially if they let people know in advance that that’s the rule,” said Paul Bender, a professor of law at Arizona State.
“I hate to say that. I don’t like them doing that. And it’s conceivable if it’s treated as a city, state or county stadium that the rule would be different. But with what kind of clothes people wear, usually people who run the stadium are thought to have the right do that as long as they say in advance that those are the rules.”