Going Bananas: The Economic Home Run Scored by the Savannah Bananas

Published May 30th, 2023, By: Sam Nixon

The MLB season may be in full swing, but it looks like the hottest tickets in the country are for a style of baseball that turns America’s pastime on its head. 

The Savannah Bananas, a team formed out of Grayson Park in Savannah, Georgia, have taken the diamond by storm. They’ve been around since 2016 with an approach that involves twerking pitchers and flame-lit bats. As the team admits, it’s all about entertainment. 

The Bananas have to be seen to be believed. They’re so good that tickets are 100% sold out for their current world tour. Since setting off in February, Banana Ball has covered a dozen ballparks (including multiple stops at their home field) right through to mid-May. And the tour continues until September. 

With all tickets locked in at just $25, we’ve looked at how much revenue the team brings to ballparks when it comes to town, and how that compares to the home team’s revenue. The Bananas travel to minor league parks nationwide, so how much do the sellout games generate for stadiums compared to average game days? 

Rich Pickings

The Savannah Bananas claim that their events are the most fun you’ll have at a baseball game. They even promise to be done in two hours! 

As we peel back the information, you can see that the fruit is sweet for this zany team from Georgia. Each inning counts individually. The team with the most runs per inning gets a point. If a lucky fan catches a foul ball, that’s an out. Bunts are banned. It’s pure baseball fun. 

Our map shows the stadiums the Bananas have and will visit on their world tour. We’ve looked at ticket prices and average attendance for each venue to work out the revenue sellout crowds will be making for the team. 

By the end of the tour, the Savannah Bananas will have played 30 games at their home stadium in Grayson Park, Georgia. Ticket sales will earn them $2.1 million dollars by selling out their 4,000-capacity ballpark each time. 

Taking Banana Ball on the road at $25 per ticket to sold-out games, the Savannah Bananas are set to make over $10.1 million in ticket revenue alone. 

Just one game at Indianapolis’ Victory Field, where the capacity is over two-thirds of their home stadium in Georgia, will earn them almost $356,000 in ticket sales alone. 

Two nights at Siuh Community Park on Staten Island in August, whose capacity is just over 7,000, is poised to generate $358,000. 

These tickets are almost as hot as access to a Taylor Swift concert, making money the minor leagues can only dream of.

Banana Splits

The Sacramento River Cats aren’t going to be dancing in the outfield during home games at Sutter Health Park. Nor is the Akron RubberDucks’ pitcher going to be taking to the mound on stilts at Canal Park. 

But that’s part of the appeal of the Savannah Bananas. 

So, how much more are the Bananas going to earn playing at the venues compared to the minor league teams based at each location? 

Working on an estimation that half of the sellout crowds per game buy a t-shirt, half buy a beer, 90% in attendance purchases a hot dog and soda, and parking is full, we’ve worked out the extra earnings the Bananas will make on top of ticket sales. 

In that one game at Victory Field in Indy, we estimate they’ll make an extra $388,323 on top of ticket sales. To put that into context, the Indianapolis Indians make $191,483 in extra sales at their home field. Including ticket sales and extra revenue (per our estimate), the Indians make $347,408 per home game. The Bananas are generating $744,073 in total revenue in one game at that ballpark. 

The smallest venue on the Bananas’ world tour will be Franklin Field in Milwaukee in early September. Ticket revenue for their two games at the 4,000-capacity stadium will bring in $100,000 for the Bananas. Compare that to the Milwaukee Milkmen earning just $21,000 per game in ticket sales at home. 

The Savannah Bananas will make more than double the Milkmen in extra revenue per game at Franklin Field. A whopping $209,156 in t-shirts, hot dogs, soda, beer, and parking in each of the two matchups compared to the $72,779 we estimate the Milkmen will pocket. 

It’s safe to say that Banana Ball is a home run hit. Just as Beyonce is delighting crowds on her Renaissance tour, the Bananas are showcasing a baseball revival all of their own. 

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