The announced crowd at Citizens Bank Park Tuesday night was 44,781, making it the Phillies' 193rd straight sellout.
Sixty seconds after they announced the attendance, the Phillies handed out a release that acknowledged the fact that most of those 44,781 paying customers were long gone by the time the team's game against the Atlanta Braves started at 8:57 p.m.
The Phillies offered compensation for the fans who could not attend and for those who remained after a nearly two-hour rain delay.
"We sincerely appreciate our fans' patience and understanding and we thank them for their incredible and continued support," said John Weber, vice president of sales and ticket operations. "As a token of our appreciation, all fans holding tickets to tonight's game may exchange their tickets for a complimentary 2012 ticket to one of six dates."
Tickets can be exchanged for Pavillion, Pavillion Deck or Terrace Deck seating areas to one of the following games during the 2012 season: Exhibition games April 2 or 3 against the Pittsburgh Pirates or any one of four Monday home games between April 30 and May 21. Times and opponents have not yet been announced.
The Phillies said fans should maintain possession of Tuesday's tickets until mid-January 2012 when the Pittsburgh exhibition tickets go on sale or mid-February 2012 when single-game tickets will go on sale. Exchanges can be made at Citizens Bank Park ticket window. All exchanges will be subject to availability and will be done on a ticket-to-ticket basis, the team's release said.
Mike Stiles, the Phillies vice president in charge of administration and operations, said the Phillies, Braves and umpires were all determined to play the game.
Because it was the last series of the season between the teams at Citizens Bank Park, the decision to play ultimately rested with umpire crew chief Dale Scott, but there were a lot of extenuating circumstances. The Phillies, for instance, have no more days off this season and the Braves have a doubleheader scheduled for Thursday against the New York Mets at Citi Field. The Phillies also have two doubleheaders scheduled for Sept. 15 and 20 and Stiles said he did not know if the weather would allow them to play a doubleheader Wednesday against the Braves.
"The Phillies and the Braves and the umpires all wanted to get this game in if at all possible," Stiles said. "We don't have a great forecast for tomorrow, so the possibility of playing two wasn't all that attractive. The umpires were looking at the same radar and talking to weather services like we were. We were being told there was a chance of this breaking up and becoming scattered around 8:30 time period and that is what happened. The umpires were interested in getting it played and so were both teams, so we waited it out."
The game, as it turned out, was played almost entirely in a wind-swept rain.
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