Brewers Extend Alcohol Sales as Games Get Shorter Due to Pitch Clock

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Milwaukee Brewers fans this year will be able to purchase alcohol at American Family Field after the seventh-inning stretch for the first time in recent memory, a change due in large part to shorter games as result of the league's new pitch clock. 

According to an announcement from the MLB, the Crew are trialing extending alcohol sales at beyond the end of the seventh inning to the end of the eighth inning. 

MLB president of Business Operations confirmed the move, noting that it is on an experimental basis. The program was implemented for the final two games of the Brewers' sweep of the New York Mets. There were no reported problems due to the extended alcohol sales. 

“This is [reflective] of the fact that the games are shorter. From a time perspective, we're probably looking at selling beer for the same amount of time by extending to the eighth inning that we did last year through the seventh,” Schlesinger said. “Obviously, the safety and the conduct of our fans has primacy. We've had no issues, but it's a small sample size and we're going to continue to test it and see if it makes sense. I know a number of other teams are doing the same thing.”

According to the MLB, since the implementation of the pitch clock, the Brewers’ first six games against the Cubs and Mets averaged two hours and 34 minutes. In 2022, each of the Brewers’ first six games exceeded three hours and averaged three hours and 19 minutes.

If extended sales result in more alcohol-related misbehavior, Schlesinger said, the Brewers could make changes ranging anywhere from cutting off sales in certain sections or concourses, to restoring the former cutoff stadium-wide, he said.

“I'm comfortable that our people are going to be monitoring the situation well and making sure that people who shouldn't be served won’t be served, regardless of what inning it is,” Schlesinger said. “The vast majority of fans behave responsibly. In fact, I will tell you because I get the data, that the number of incidents of misbehavior with alcohol are down. I think people have more sensitivity and awareness.

“But again, if we see some concerns, safety is No. 1 and we'll revisit it. If it turns out that this is causing an issue or we feel that it might cause an issue, then we'll revert to what we have done previously.”

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