Carpenter leads the Cubs’ predictive analytics efforts, focusing on ticket pricing, food, beverage and event operations, and guest experience. Prior to joining the Cubs, he worked at RSG, a consulting company focused on product development and pricing strategy.
- Audio: Click here to listen to Chase Carpenter’s opening remarks at SABR 51 (MP3; 59:45)
Here are some highlights:
ON THE MODERNIZATION OF WRIGLEY FIELD
- “It was the most ambitious project that we undertook. By the stats, a five-year, $760 million renovation, today it’s basically a brand-new stadium from a mechanical perspective. … At the end of that five-year investment, we now have brand-new player facilities with a 30,000-square-foot clubhouse, 40 percent increase in bathrooms and concession points of sale, new and premium high-value suites, brand-new renovated luxury suite level, and other assets that help us on the business side.”
ON IMPROVING THE FAN EXPERIENCE
- “In 2019, you’d spend 25 or 30 minutes waiting to get inside Wrigley Field. We’ve all but eliminated wait times. … The next-longest line you’d stand in was trying to get a hot dog and a soda. We took 2021 and ran a bunch of small-scale pilots. I called it the ‘hunger games’ of Wrigley Field. Ultimately, we now have about 40 self-checkout units gathered across the stadium. Wait times went from 15 to 20 minutes; now it’s 2 to 3 minutes. … The third-longest line you may wait in is access to a restroom. That one, we still haven’t figured out. Sometimes you can’t escape trying to host 40,000 fans in a stadium that was built 100 years ago.”
ON CHANGING THE CULTURE OF THE CUBS
- “If we were going to overhaul that organizational culture — which, like it or not, was directly tied to being ‘lovable losers’ — we had to go top to bottom. It started with a $100 million investment in Sloan Park (in Arizona) and we opened our performance center there in 2014. At the same time we started an academy down in the Dominican (Republic) that opened in 2013. These two investments completely overhauled the player development infrastructure and what we were able to do to take young, upcoming talent and get them ready to compete at the major league level.”
ON A TEAM’S RESPONSIBILITY TO ITS FANS
- “Baseball as a game, and as a business, helps close gaps across time, generations, and geography, for a global game where we’re bringing people and cultures together. Stewardship done well is action-oriented. I would point to the recent rules changes as an example of active stewardship. … We’re trying to focus on building things that last the span of time.”
For more coverage of SABR 51, visit SABR.org/convention.
Originally published: July 6, 2023. Last Updated: July 6, 2023.