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Saturday, August 13, 2011

Baxter: Ranking baseball’s best and worst fans

Standing ‘O’

Team (average home attendance); comment

1. Boston (37,666) Red Sox Nation not only fills Fenway, where there have been 690 consecutive sellouts, but the team’s fans travel, too.

2. St. Louis (38,023) Downtown is a sea of Cardinals red on game days. The fans understand and respect the game, politely cheering good plays by the opposition.

3. New York Yankees (44,739) Old Yankee Stadium drew more than 4 million fans in each of its last four years. The crowds are large, loud and passionate.

8. Dodgers (36,949) The fans are loyal and passionate. That they’ve stayed home this season only underscores their feelings for the franchise.

9. Angels (39,063) The team will outdraw the Dodgers for the first time this season, yet Anaheim crowds still get marked down for a lack of ardor. It’s a bum rap for a loyal fan base.

Raspberries

1. Tampa Bay (19,326) Management gave away tickets to draw respectable crowds during a pennant race last fall. The Rays are good and exciting, but few in Tampa Bay care.

2. Florida: (17,992) The state is officially a baseball wasteland. The last time the Marlins weren’t last in the NL in attendance, 2004, was the season after they won the World Series.

3. Cleveland (21,881) We know all about the long sellout streak at Progressive Field. But that was last century. This year, the Indians got off to a great start and the fans still stayed home.

4. Oakland (18,925) This one’s on management, which has put a losing team in a dreary mausoleum of a ballpark. The lack of enthusiasm and energy here is depressing.

Let’s see:
When Dodger fans stay home, this means they absolutely love the franchise.
When any other team’s fans stay home, this is an unconscionable act.
Got it!

JE (Jason) Posted: August 13, 2011 at 10:38 PM | 33 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: general

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   1. cardsfanboy Posted: August 14, 2011 at 06:36 AM (#3899596)
ok, how can anyone take seriously a ranking that gives Phillies fans a 4th place spot????
   2. asdf1234 Posted: August 14, 2011 at 07:13 AM (#3899601)
ok, how can anyone take seriously a ranking that gives Phillies fans a 4th place spot????


To be fair, he was giving them bonus points for trying to blind Julio Lugo.
   3. ChuckO Posted: August 14, 2011 at 11:44 AM (#3899617)
So they give raspberries to Oakland's fans but admit that it's management's fault. I don't understand it. What is it about MLB, or any other professional sport, that one should be a loyal fan no matter what the product that is put on the field? If your favorite restaurant changed chefs and the food was no longer any good, would you feel compelled to keep going there out of loyalty? Of course not. Pro sports is a business, as the owners are quick to remind us. It's up to the team to put a product on the field that will appeal to the fan base. In the case of a team like the Rays, if the people in the area really aren't interested in baseball, then they can exercise their prerogative and move, just like any other business.
   4. cardsfanboy Posted: August 14, 2011 at 12:12 PM (#3899624)
If your favorite restaurant changed chefs and the food was no longer any good, would you feel compelled to keep going there out of loyalty?


I still go to KFC after they got rid of the good flavored transfat food, partially out of the hope that they will find a way to make their food yummy again...

but yes I agree, Pirate fans have shown this year that all they needed was some type of hope/hype to go back to the games, and I'm sorry but the A's philosophy is such a horrible philosophy of designing a team with fans in mind that I'm surprised that they can even muster 1mil fans. Is there any player on that team, that has been with them for over 5 years? You have to either compete or give the fans an attachment to the team, Oakland hasn't done either for a while.
   5. Lassus Posted: August 14, 2011 at 12:53 PM (#3899634)
I've always loved Oakland Stadium. To be fair, however, I do think the endless pissing and moaning over a stadium's shortcomings are just the epitome of a weak constitution. "Dreary"? Please.
   6. Flynn Posted: August 14, 2011 at 01:41 PM (#3899641)
It's absolutely a dreary stadium. I went to an A's game with the lady and she compared it to her grandmother's council estate. It wasn't a compliment.

If, theoretically, we lived in the area, there would be no way she would want to go to the Coliseum, unless it was perfect weather and the Red Sox or Giants were in town.

The amazing bit is Mt. Davis, which is the youngest part of the stadium by almost 30 years, is actually the dreariest part.
   7. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: August 14, 2011 at 01:53 PM (#3899644)
Brewer fans have been filling up Miller Park for some time. The writer needs to pay better attention

And local fans are hopeful that the combination of a reasonable offer from the Crew and unappealing suitors will keep Prince in Milwaukee

Dreamers can dream
   8. Joey B. has reignited his October #Natitude Posted: August 14, 2011 at 02:50 PM (#3899660)
I'm certainly not going to quibble about Washington being in the bottom 10, but I'm not sure how we are and the Orioles aren't. We're drawing almost 2,000 more a game than those losers.
   9. tfbg9 Posted: August 14, 2011 at 03:28 PM (#3899671)
He got #1 right, of course. And #2.

I admire the Cards, and especially for 1 reason. Anyone care to guess what it might be?

I will mail a five spot to the winner.
   10. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: August 14, 2011 at 04:12 PM (#3899685)
I admire the Cards, and especially for 1 reason. Anyone care to guess what it might be?

Hmmmmmm, is it that their media guide leaves out any mention of the 1946 and 1967 World Series, and devotes 10 pages each to 1926, 1942, 1964 and 2004? (smile)
   11. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: August 14, 2011 at 04:13 PM (#3899686)
Hey, Tony's mom posts at BBTF!
   12. tfbg9 Posted: August 14, 2011 at 05:15 PM (#3899704)
10-no.
   13. BDC Posted: August 14, 2011 at 05:24 PM (#3899709)
So what are the ten teams with the most mediocre fans? White Sox, Rockies, Rangers, Astros, Padres, Orioles, Twins, Royals, Pirates, and Mets, I guess.

I've been so unlucky with travel in recent years that I haven't seen a game anywhere but Arlington, New York, and Boston since the turn of the century. Old Yankee Stadium was always electric, and I loved Fenway, and we get a lot of those clubs' fans here in Arlington as our guests at Rangers games :) Shea Stadium was like, hey, there's Mr Met; I haven't been to the new New York parks. Arlington . . . people go to the concession stands a lot. They go into the air-conditioned parts of the park a lot. They don't talk about baseball much. They are happiest when there are fireworks or a concert or something is on after the game. They include George W Bush.
   14. PJ Martinez Posted: August 14, 2011 at 05:46 PM (#3899717)
I admire the Cards, and especially for 1 reason. Anyone care to guess what it might be?

Rolling over in '04?
   15. tfbg9 Posted: August 14, 2011 at 06:04 PM (#3899723)
14-no.

The $5 bill is still up for grabs.
   16. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: August 14, 2011 at 06:27 PM (#3899740)
I admire the Cards, and especially for 1 reason. Anyone care to guess what it might be?

Because Pujols & LaRussa showed up to that Glen Beck rally?
   17. tfbg9 Posted: August 14, 2011 at 10:09 PM (#3899896)
Wrong. You all have until midnight...to win the coveted $5.
   18. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: August 14, 2011 at 10:19 PM (#3899901)
"Dreary"? Please.


You're right. "Dreary" is much too kind a word for that place. It's a festering slough of despond.
   19. The Long Arm of Rudy Law Posted: August 14, 2011 at 11:08 PM (#3899936)
I admire the Cards, and especially for 1 reason. Anyone care to guess what it might be?


Mike Laga.
   20. Benji Gil Gamesh Rises Posted: August 14, 2011 at 11:34 PM (#3899953)
I admire the Cards, and especially for 1 reason. Anyone care to guess what it might be?
They're the only team to face Tim Wakefield at least 6 times and lose only once?
   21. tfbg9 Posted: August 15, 2011 at 12:39 AM (#3899986)
Wrong and wrong. 20 is kinda funny.
   22. BDC Posted: August 15, 2011 at 01:01 AM (#3899996)
I'm going to guess it's because of the little birds on their uniforms, the ones that sit on the bats. I frankly can't see any other reason to like the Cardinals.
   23. Dewey, Soupuss Not Doomed to Succeed Posted: August 15, 2011 at 01:04 AM (#3900001)
Dodgers (36,949) The fans are loyal and passionate.

So passionate that they'll beat you into a coma if you dare to root for a rival.
   24. GGC don't think it can get longer than a novella Posted: August 15, 2011 at 01:30 AM (#3900008)
They're prelates?
   25. The Long Arm of Rudy Law Posted: August 15, 2011 at 01:41 AM (#3900013)
As a fan of baseball fans, I'm passionate about my favorite fans being short-changed here. Typical biased media.
   26. tfbg9 Posted: August 15, 2011 at 02:00 AM (#3900022)
22, 24-nope.
   27. Random Transaction Generator Posted: August 15, 2011 at 02:19 AM (#3900032)
5. Toronto (23,007) The Blue Jays drew more than 4 million to their stadium when they were winning in the 1990s. Now they're competitive again — and rank 24th in attendance.

This writer's version of "competitive" is very odd.
No playoff appearances since winning in 1993, and here is how many games back Toronto has been from the division lead on August 1st of every year for the last decade:

2001 - 15.5
2002 - 19.5
2003 - 13
2004 - 21
2005 - 6
2006 - 6.5
2007 - 12
2008 - 10.5
2009 - 12
2010 - 12.5
2011 - 11.5

Number of times they were better than 3rd at the time (therefore, definitely not in a playoff position): 0
   28. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 15, 2011 at 03:06 AM (#3900046)
Wow, winning teams have "great" fans. I am floored.

The Cincy attendance is considered bad? Isn't Cincy like the smallest market in the game? I don't think you can expect sell outs. The entire list is stupid. Cleveland didn't have great attendance early in the year because season ticket sales were low because they weren't expected to be good. You can't expect 20,000 walk ups every night when the team is "hot." All the top four "great fanbases" have been consistent winners for over a decade or longer. Not hard to show up to see a good team.

In conclusion, the Royals and Pirates have the greatest fans on earth. How anyone could show up to see those teams for the last two decades takes some great loyalty.
   29. tfbg9 Posted: August 15, 2011 at 12:28 PM (#3900131)
Answer: The Cards are the only franchise that has faced the NYY's more than once in the WS and have a winning
record against them.
   30. SandyRiver Posted: August 15, 2011 at 02:09 PM (#3900184)
In WS wins, but not in WS games. (And I know which one I'd rather have...)
   31. tfbg9 Posted: August 15, 2011 at 02:40 PM (#3900208)
The Pirates are 1-1 I think.

/shoves fiver back into wallet
   32. Matthew E Posted: August 15, 2011 at 03:11 PM (#3900229)
This writer's version of "competitive" is very odd.
No playoff appearances since winning in 1993, and here is how many games back Toronto has been from the division lead on August 1st of every year for the last decade:

(cut)

Number of times they were better than 3rd at the time (therefore, definitely not in a playoff position): 0


You seem to agree with a lot of potential baseball fans in Toronto, then.

Still, you could also say that the Jays have, for a few years now, usually been able to finish above .500 in a tough division. I don't think that it's straining the dictionary definition of "competitive" to apply the word to the Jays.

As far as the article's concerned, well... the problem for Toronto, and by extension I assume this applies to most if not all other teams too, is not that their fans aren't any good. The problem is they don't have enough of them.
   33. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: August 15, 2011 at 03:17 PM (#3900240)
All the top four "great fanbases" have been consistent winners for over a decade or longer.


Except the Phillies.

Okay, exactly a decade for the Phillies.

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