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02/14/2003 09:52 am ET 

Mets tickets on sale now

By Kevin T. Czerwinski / MLB.com

jamie and ed
Former Met Ed Kranepool (right) with a fan who got his 2003 tickets. (Marc S. Levine/NY Mets)

NEW YORK -- It's been a cold, snowy winter in the Big Apple but Mets fans could begin thinking of warmer days on Sunday. That's when single game tickets went on sale for the 2003 season.

Tickets can be purchased online at www.mets.com, at the Shea Stadium ticket window, or by calling 718-507-TIXX. Tickets can also be purchased at New York Mets Clubhouse Shops on 143 East 54th St. and 11 West 42nd St. in Manhattan or at the Roosevelt Field Mall in Garden City, Long Island, or the Menlo Park Mall in Edison, N.J.

Fans gobbled up 130,000 tickets last season on the first day of ticket sales and a similar rush is expected this season. Season tickets and partial ticket plans, which have been on sale all winter, are also still available. In the past, current and former players have been on hand to serve coffee and hot chocolate, mingling with the fans while they wait on line to purchase tickets.

This season, as in the past, former Mets players were expected to be on hand to serve coffee and donuts -- courtesy of Dunkin Donuts, Aramark and the Mets -- while mingling with the fans as they wait in line to buy tickets. Reliever Tug McGraw and first baseman Ed Kranepool, staples of the 1969 World Series championship team and the 1973 National League championship squad, were to be on hand as will Bobby Ojeda. The southpaw, who was named pitching coach of the Mets' Double-A affiliate in Binghamton this winter, will be there as well to represent the '86 NL champs.

"We encourage fans to purchase tickets early to secure the best available seating locations," Mets vice president of ticket sales and services Bill Ianniciello said. "We fully expect certain games to sell out quickly. Also, we are very pleased to have our championship clubs represented on Sunday morning at Shea to greet our loyal fans."

Ticket prices this season range from $8 to $53, depending on the game. The home schedule is broken down into four separate groupings -- Gold Dates, Silver Dates, Bronze Dates and Value Dates.

Prices for Gold Date games begin at $16 for Upper Reserved, Loge Reserved (back rows) and Mezzanine Reserved (back rows) and go to $53 for Inner Field Box. Some highlights of Gold Date games include Opening Day against the Cubs, a three-game set with Atlanta (May 30-June 1), a three-game set with Seattle (June 6-8) and the Yankee series (June 20-22). Another Gold Date series occurs when the National League champion Giants and Barry Bonds come to town from Aug. 12-14. There are 17 total Gold Dates on the schedule.

Prices for Silver Date games range from $16 to $48. Some highlights of Silver Date games include a three-game set with Arizona (April 25-27), a pair of three-game series with Atlanta (July 7-9 and Sept. 1-3) and a pair of series with Philadelphia (July 11-13 and Aug. 29-31). There are 21 Silver Dates on the schedule.

Prices for Bronze Date games range from $12 to $43. Some highlights of the Bronze Date games include a three-game series with Los Angeles (May 6-8), April 2-3 versus the Cubs and a September showdown with Montreal (19-21). There are 27 Bronze Date games on the schedule.

Prices for the Value Date games range from $8 to $38. There are 16 Value Date games on the schedule in addition to a March 29 exhibition game against Baltimore. Big Value Date games are April 22-24 against Houston, May 20-22 against Philadelphia and Sept. 8-10 against Florida.

Each Mets ticket order is filled with the best seats available within a seating category (outside of seating areas that are set aside for season ticket, plan or other package sales) at the time the request is processed. If no seats are available in the seating category requested the order will be filled with the next best available seating. Tickets for preferable seating locations may sometimes become available on a later date.

The "Back Rows, Loge and Mezzanine Reserved" seating category consists of the last two and three rows, respectively, of these levels. This back row seating on either level will only be available for sale for a game when all other reserved seating on that level is sold out. Fans seated in these rows may not be able to see the main scoreboard or DiamondVision.

Non-Alcohol Consumption seating may be purchased at any Mets ticket sales outlet or by mail to Shea Stadium, subject to availability. All such seating is Upper Level Reserved.

Kevin T. Czerwinski is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.