BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - The Biloxi Shuckers have wrapped up a memorable regular season and are gearing up for the playoffs.
The Biloxi Shuckers missed 45 home games as MGM Park was being built. In an abbreviated season, the Southern League team had its first of 25 home games on June 6.
Because MGM Park has 6,098, and is a business, attendance is critical.
"We're averaging 3,325 fans a game. Keep in mind, a lot of those games were on school nights," said Shuckers General Manager Buck Rodgers. "Some parents don't bring their kids to games on school nights. We didn't have the entire summer and all of May."
Minor league baseball is known for it's creative promotional events for fans, but because of uncertainty for the 2015 season, the Shuckers organization was unable to plan ahead. However, that should change in 2016.
"Next year we'll go all out. We'll have everything at our disposal. Our sales staff will go out and crush it. Tee shirt give-a-ways, autograph nights, the whole nine yards," promised Rodgers.
The downtown location raised some concerns; a big question involving parking.
"There's always an issue with parking. It is what it is. I usually park by the hospital and walk over to the game. It's something you just have to deal with," according to fan Roger Magnuson.
With taxpayers, the city of Biloxi and the state making a $36 million investment in MGM Park, fans say it was worthwhile.
"I like the park. It's family oriented. It's close enough so you get a feel for the action all the time," said fan Tim Morgan.
The Shuckers are getting ready for game one of the playoffs, Thursday night at MGM Park against Pensacola.