Wednesday, June 23, 2010
My 50th Consectutive Media Guide
Arriving in the mail recently was my copy of the Cubs 2010 Media Guide. This makes #50 in my collection, meaning I've got one for each season from 1961 - 2010. That's 50 years worth of information about teams that didn't make it to the World Series!
If you are a team collector, I recommend you get your teams guide. They contain a ton biographical information on the players and interesting historical data on the team. The older books are especially helpful and a reliable source of information.
This is the cover of my oldest one, from 1961. These were only 4½" by 7" and 40 pages long. All of the pictures were in black and white. It was not called a media guide, it was a "Roster Book" and could be bought at Wrigley Field for 25¢. The Cubs put out a couple editions each season, one in the spring and another during the season. You can see that mine is a spring edition.
In 1968 the shape changed to this more rectangular book, at 4½" by 9".
The first book to include any color photos was the 1982 edition. This was the initial book released under Tribune Company ownership. They were trying to upgrade and modernize all phases of the Cubs operation, and not only did the book include some color, but the number of pages jumped from 72 to 116 pages. The name also changed from Roster Book to News Media Guide.
In 2000, the size changed to the current 6" x 9." Over the years the books continued to add more pages. This years edition is 336 pages long, which is a typical number of pages since the late 1990's.
I paged through both the 1961 and 2010 books to see if there was anything done in a similar way and I found this: Wrigley Field Facts and Figures.
The one on top is the 1961 version and the 2010 version is below. Note the field dimensions, which are exactly the same today. The capacity at the park is a bit different, as the Cubs have added 4,500 seats. Finally, check out the ticket prices. They are not the same as today!
Here's an interesting way to put the ticket prices in perspective. In 1961 the Cubs had 65 home dates (they had 12 home doubleheaders). If you bought a bleacher ticket to every home date, it would have cost you $48.75. A bleacher ticket to opening day, 2010, went for $54.00! One game in 2010 cost more than a season's worth in 1961. Wow!