EL PASO, Texas -

It's not quite the World Series, but for Minor League Baseball, the start of the Pacific Coast League Championship Series is as big as it gets!
     
Game 1 of the best-of-five series between the El Paso Chihuahuas and Oklahoma City Dodgers at Southwest University Park is Tuesday.

Judging by the Chihuahuas's attendance figures, you'd think the stadium would be standing room only. That won't be the case as the front office has struggled to sell tickets for weekday playoff games.

"This is very rare, this is the first time since 1988 that the San Diego Padres' Triple-A team has reached the championship series," Tim Hagerty, the broadcaster for the El Paso Chihuahuas, said.

The series also gives El Paso its first shot at a professional baseball title since the Diablos won the Texas League 22 years ago!

"You look back to the beginning of the season, what if someone told you we would be hosting a championship series? I think everybody would be thrilled with that," Hagerty said.

So why has it been so hard to sell tickets?

The Chihuahuas averaged close to 8,000 fans per game.  Last week's playoff games were the two lowest attended games of the season, with just over 4,000 fans each.

"That's a little shocking," said Hugo Dominguez, a Chihuahuas fan.

"I'm not surprised because, once school started, attendance went down," said Kathy Geck.

Fan Al Soto does not understand the low attendance figures for playoff games. "We're excited about it. El Paso has a good team, a beautiful stadium. what more do we want?" Soto asked.

Soto and Geck both have tickets for Tuesday night's game.

"Where were our fans? They need to be out here," Soto said.

"Think about how much the Chihuahuas have supported El Paso and it's time for us to support them," Geck said.

Game 2 is scheduled for 6:35 p.m. Wednesday night at southwest university park.