Go to a Major League Baseball game, and the invisible effects of analytics are everywhere – from the pitches being thrown, to the positioning of fielders or the swing plane of the hitters.

And even the hot dog you might enjoy at the ballpark.

Two years of shuttered, fan-less or even partially opened ballparks had the potential to wreak predictive havoc on baseball’s guest experience. Throw in supply-chain issues, surging inflation and a perilous lockout right before the 2022 season commenced, and both the price and availability of your favorite ballpark snacks could have been significantly impacted.

But feeding 10,000 to 50,000 fans over 81 home games and six months is an awful lot like managing a ballgame: Know the issues and get ahead of them before you’re behind.

The three mega-corporations who control the lion’s share of ballpark food saw their usual balancing act – satisfying ballclubs, finding palatable price points for fans and turning a profit – imperiled greatly since the onset of the pandemic. The two biggest services – Delaware North and Aramark – said doubling down on preparation and predictive behavior proved crucial to keep the price of a hot dog hovering between around $3 and $7 per ballpark this year.