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Friday, April 04, 2014

Facebook Fandom Map

This map displays Facebook fans of all of the MLB teams across the U.S.  Each county is color-coded based on which official Facebook team page has the most likes …

Apologies to Canada, first off :)  There are some obvious patterns here and some surprises.  And some awkward and counterintuitive color choices: the Delaware Valley, for instance, seems to have slud into the ocean.

BDC Posted: April 04, 2014 at 09:20 AM | 96 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: business, fans, history, social media

Reader Comments and Retorts

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   1. Flynn Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:23 AM (#4679122)
The biggest surprise here is that the White Sox are the favorites of Cook County. And that the A's have no counties at all - I thought Alameda and Solano counties might be A's.
   2. Tom Nawrocki Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:28 AM (#4679129)
I was surprised to see that big swath of eastern Virginia and North Carolina to be Yankees country. Is there any logical reason for that, other than there's no obvious hometown team in those areas?
   3. McCoy Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:35 AM (#4679138)
Well, the Yankees did have a minor league team in Greensboro for a while.
   4. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:35 AM (#4679139)
I was surprised to see that big swath of eastern Virginia and North Carolina to be Yankees country. Is there any logical reason for that, other than there's no obvious hometown team in those areas?

Same with Alaska, Utah, Montana, and almost all of Louisiana and New Mexico. I think your guess is right.
   5. McCoy Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:38 AM (#4679145)
Yankees have had minor league teams in Florida for a long time and have put teams over the Appalachians for a while as well. KC, New Orleans, Nashville, several places in Texas, Alabama, and so forth.
   6. Tom Nawrocki Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:39 AM (#4679147)
Ron Guidry is probably responsible for a good deal of the Yankee fandom in Louisiana.
   7. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:40 AM (#4679149)
I'm pretty sure a similar map for Canada would indicate a) that the Tigers have a fair amount of fans in Southern Ontario, and b) that Quebec and the Atlantic provinces are part of Red Sox Nation. I don't know about western Canada, but I imagine Vancouver in in Marinerland.
   8. TerpNats Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:40 AM (#4679150)
The Nationals have done a dreadful job of marketing their franchise in Virginia south and west of Charlottesville, areas that follow the Redskins religiously (and to a far lesser extent the Capitals and Wizards) and were key regions of the original AL Senators' radio network in the Arch MacDonald years. And this is at a time when Washington's MLB product is at its best level since the Senators' golden decade of 1924-1933.
   9. villageidiom Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:41 AM (#4679152)
I was surprised to see that big swath of eastern Virginia and North Carolina to be Yankees country. Is there any logical reason for that, other than there's no obvious hometown team in those areas?
It seems to be a variation on "not enough data". Both Red Sox and Yankees have large swaths of Alaska, Montana, Idaho, Utah... If you develop a baseball fandom away from a MLB team, you probably develop an affinity for the teams you see most often on national TV.
   10. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:43 AM (#4679155)
The biggest surprise here is that the White Sox are the favorites of Cook County.


I was surprised my county favored the Cubs and not the White Sox.
   11. TerpNats Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:43 AM (#4679156)
The Expos marketed a bit to northern and central Vermont in the '90s for bus day-trip excursions and such, though they never were going to replace the Bosox in people's hearts.
   12. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:44 AM (#4679157)
It's also Facebook users who skew younger and developed their fandom over the last few decades when the Yanks and Sox have been good.

Interesting that the Braves (I think) have a large section of Ohio.

EDIT: Never mind. Apparently that's Cleveland. Thanks #23.
   13. Greg K Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:44 AM (#4679159)
I just finished a road trip from Fort Myers, Florida to Toronto. It was fun seeing who Yahoo assumed I was a fan of along the way. At some point in Virginia they offered to give me up to date info on the Nationals, the Orioles, the Hurricanes, Panthers and something called the Bobcats. Though all the stores were only stocked with Virginia Tech stuff.
   14. BDC Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:45 AM (#4679160)
I would love to know why Dewey County, Oklahoma, is Pirates' territory. OTOH less than five thousand people live there, and one wonders how many are on Facebook to begin with, let alone "liking" MLB teams.

It's beautiful country, though, Western Oklahoma: empty two-lane blacktop highways to dream on.
   15. TerpNats Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:45 AM (#4679162)
The biggest surprise here is that the White Sox are the favorites of Cook County.
How many Big Ten frat boys actually live in Cook County?
   16. zonk Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:47 AM (#4679164)
Am I seeing correctly that the Mets have no counties either? I see... something in one Louisiana county, but the color-coding makes it hard to tell whether it's Mets/Orioles/Angels/Giants.

   17. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:47 AM (#4679165)
I was surprised to see that big swath of eastern Virginia and North Carolina to be Yankees country. Is there any logical reason for that, other than there's no obvious hometown team in those areas?


My experience with North Carolinians is that they latch on as fans to the teams that caught their eye as kids. Thus, Dial is a big Mets fans because of the mid-80s, while his little brother is a Expos/Nats fan because...well, no one actually knows why T. behaves the way he does. We mostly just blame Chris for that as well. I expect a lot of kids glommed onto the Yankees in the 1990s and early Aughts and that reflects in Facebook activity more than some of the older fans of other teams in the area.
   18. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:47 AM (#4679166)
Alas, the Mets also appear to have no counties, not even in Queens.

Also funny that one Hawaiian island (Kauai?) are fans of the Giants (I think).

It would be nice if this were also shaded based on the percentages.
   19. zonk Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:47 AM (#4679167)
How many Big Ten frat boys actually live in Cook County?


Lots.

Lots of lots.
   20. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:49 AM (#4679168)
And we can clearly see from this that only the NE cares about the Red Sox and Yankees as some here like to claim.

Mets are the other team with no majority counties, correct? The similarity in colors make this a little hard to really tell...

ETA: Or I could read the note at the bottom. No one likes the Blue Jays either.
   21. Tom Nawrocki Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:49 AM (#4679170)
It seems to be a variation on "not enough data". Both Red Sox and Yankees have large swaths of Alaska, Montana, Idaho, Utah...


That's why Virginia and North Carolina surprised me. Ain't many people in Alaska or Montana or Idaho, but there's lots of them along the eastern seaboard.
   22. Tom Nawrocki Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:51 AM (#4679171)
Mets are the other team with no majority counties, correct? The similarity in colors make this a little hard to really tell...


According to the article that originally appeared with this map, the A's and Blue Jays don't claim any counties, either. I'm surprised Queens County didn't break for the Mets.
   23. Chris Fluit Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:52 AM (#4679175)

Interesting that the Braves (I think) have a large section of Ohio.


Nope. That's the Indians. Similar blue but the Indians are a shade darker.
   24. Rennie's Tenet Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:55 AM (#4679178)
I would love to know why Dewey County, Oklahoma, is Pirates' territory. OTOH less than five thousand people live there, and one wonders how many are on Facebook to begin with, let alone "liking" MLB teams.


Young shortstop Jordy Mercer is from Taloga.
   25. Chris Fluit Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:56 AM (#4679179)
I was surprised to see that big swath of eastern Virginia and North Carolina to be Yankees country. Is there any logical reason for that, other than there's no obvious hometown team in those areas?


I think it shows how far the Orioles have fallen since their heyday of competitiveness. All of Virginia used to belong to the Orioles but it looks like they've been losing fans over the last 15-20 years of stinking.
   26. GregD Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:56 AM (#4679180)
Also funny that one Hawaiian island (Kauai?) are fans of the Giants (I think).
Yeah that's the county of Kauai (Niihau is the other island in the county but is privately owned and has maybe a couple of hundred people.) My dad lives there and listens to Giants games all the time. My recollection--possibly faulty--is that the Dodgers games became harder to get on the radio at one point so for a while the Giants had a monopoly on radio broadcasts on the island. This seems hard to believe though since they can catch every Oahu station. Maybe the Giants had the only broadcast on a Kauai-based station?

Anyway, it's a beautiful island but one where you spend a lot of time in your driving, especially as traffic gets worse and worse, so radio coverage is important. And the time zone means you can listen to evening games while driving home from a normal work day.

There are also a lot of 49ers fans on the island though that's possibly just their success and the lack of a LA team.

Lots of people root for the Lakers.

No one I've ever met has any connection to any San Diego teams even though they are closer.
   27. Mike Emeigh Posted: April 04, 2014 at 11:05 AM (#4679193)
That's why Virginia and North Carolina surprised me. Ain't many people in Alaska or Montana or Idaho, but there's lots of them along the eastern seaboard.


Not really in VA and NC, in the areas that are highlighted anyway.

As noted, the Yankees had a farm team in Greensboro for many years. The Yankees also had their AAA farm team in Richmond from 1956-1964, were in Kinston for a while in the 70s, and at Prince William (now Potomac) for a few years in the 80s. There are also many transplants from New York in the Carolinas.

-- MWE
   28. BDC Posted: April 04, 2014 at 11:10 AM (#4679200)
Young shortstop Jordy Mercer is from Taloga

That is absolutely why, then. Cool!
   29. Rennie's Tenet Posted: April 04, 2014 at 11:18 AM (#4679207)
The same map for the NFL seems to be in this:

NFL map
   30. ursus arctos Posted: April 04, 2014 at 11:25 AM (#4679213)
It would be interesting to see them do a time series of these maps at five year intervals.

My sense is that a significant number of "marginal" counties would flip based on clubs' recent results and changes in broadcast coverage.
   31. Manny Coon Posted: April 04, 2014 at 11:27 AM (#4679216)
So there are a bunch of Pirates fans in the middle of Oklahoma? Or am I reading that wrong?
   32. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: April 04, 2014 at 11:29 AM (#4679217)
So there are a bunch of Pirates fans in the middle of Oklahoma? Or am I reading that wrong?

Young shortstop Jordy Mercer is from Taloga

That is absolutely why, then. Cool!
   33. Dale Sams Posted: April 04, 2014 at 11:36 AM (#4679228)
Young shortstop Jordy Mercer is from Taloga

That is absolutely why, then. Cool!


For the last few days, I've been trying to figure out why TB had an outpost in Oklahoma.

And seriously South? All those counties going for the 'Yankees'??
   34. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: April 04, 2014 at 11:43 AM (#4679240)
All those counties going for the 'Yankees'??

It's weird but true. The Yanks are very popular down there. I'm surprised the Cardinals don't do better in Mississippi. I used to listen to Cards games on KMOX when I lived there.
   35. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: April 04, 2014 at 11:49 AM (#4679246)
And seriously South? All those counties going for the 'Yankees'??


There are only three teams in the "South;" Atlanta, Texas and Houston. Neither of the Floridian franchises qualifies. So for the deep south, those are the three options. (Most of the old Cardinal fans from the area are aging out and wouldn't show up in a Facebook generated map.) So the question for the south is who do they lean toward. Alabama and TN tend to lean Braves, as does SC. But as you get further off the eastern coast, that natural allegiance fades, and the Texas teams don't have the reach eastward. So you have a lot of open territory for the taking there.

There's no natural reason a young fan from MS wouldn't latch onto Jeter or the Yankees, or just latch onto Jay-Z's favorite team.
   36. GregD Posted: April 04, 2014 at 11:54 AM (#4679249)
The decline of the Reds in the mid-south gives me a sad
   37. Dale Sams Posted: April 04, 2014 at 12:21 PM (#4679272)
And NE Oklahoma, I don't get either. Tulsa is Colorado's affiliate, I don't even know any Royals fans, and KC games are broadcast with much less regularity than Ranger and Cardinal games.
   38. DL from MN Posted: April 04, 2014 at 12:34 PM (#4679285)
Looks like a lot of potential for the Nationals to improve their standing in Virginia
   39. Flynn Posted: April 04, 2014 at 12:38 PM (#4679289)
The Expos marketed a bit to northern and central Vermont in the '90s for bus day-trip excursions and such, though they never were going to replace the Bosox in people's hearts.


The Expos used to market to upstate New York and Vermont quite a lot back in the day. They sold a lot of weekend season ticket packages to people there. They also had a minor league affiliate in Burlington, VT.
   40. thetailor Posted: April 04, 2014 at 01:09 PM (#4679316)
Et tu, Queens? Et tu??
   41. Karl from NY Posted: April 04, 2014 at 01:39 PM (#4679340)
I'm surprised Queens County didn't break for the Mets.

The Mets are seriously hurting for fans, everywhere around the metropolitan area. There's only a fairly narrow age range where Mets fans predominate. You have to remember the 85-89 Mets teams but not be old enough for the 77-81 Yankees nor be young enough that the 96-01 Yankees were part of your formative years. I know almost no Mets fans younger than 30 or older than 40. I'm sure there are anecdotal exceptions but really the Mets don't hold sway in any demographic.

As for Queens itself, it has huge swaths of immigrants that arrived long after the Mets had ever been any good so all they've ever known in the media is the Yankees. The location of the Mets' stadium in Queens has nothing to do with it.

The Jets have the same problem, and worse because they don't even have that narrow band of prominence in their history. They don't own any county on the NFL map.
   42. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: April 04, 2014 at 01:40 PM (#4679341)
The Expos used to market to upstate New York and Vermont quite a lot back in the day. They sold a lot of weekend season ticket packages to people there. They also had a minor league affiliate in Burlington, VT.


The Vermont Lake Monsters! Used to be the Vermont Expos. Last professional team to carry the name 'Expos'. Now apparently they are affiliated with...Oakland? Never understood the regional displacements of minor league teams...
   43. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: April 04, 2014 at 01:48 PM (#4679350)
The Mets are seriously hurting for fans, everywhere around the metropolitan area. There's only a fairly narrow age range where Mets fans predominate. You have to remember the 85-89 Mets teams but not be old enough for the 77-81 Yankees nor be young enough that the 96-01 Yankees were part of your formative years. I know almost no Mets fans younger than 30 or older than 40. I'm sure there are anecdotal exceptions but really the Mets don't hold sway in any demographic.


Yep. Every Mets fan I know falls between the ages of 35-50. Guys that bought in during the Gooden Era glory and stuck it out through the Mets.com Bubble of the late 1990s, a team that notably never broke through for a championship. The last Mets team that could claim to be truly good was the 2006 97-win squad. They lost the NLCS and were immediately eclipsed in the public imagination by the Phillies bubble-dynasty, a phenomenon driven in the early years by "Mets collapse down the stretch" jokes. A 13 year old kid literally has no memory of a Mets team with any sort of national profile. Barring that 2006 season, the previous 90+ win Mets club existed prior to 9-11.

There's just no reason to expect a young New Yorker baseball fan to adopt the Mets as his or her team, barring parents with incentives to keep it in the family.
   44. TerpNats Posted: April 04, 2014 at 01:49 PM (#4679352)
Vermont used to be a Washington affiliate, but the Nationals moved their short-season A affiliation to Auburn, N.Y., probably because of its proximity to AAA Syracuse.
   45. Eddo Posted: April 04, 2014 at 02:57 PM (#4679451)
How many Big Ten frat boys actually live in Cook County?


* raises hand *

Of course, I'm a Sox fan.
   46. Worrierking Posted: April 04, 2014 at 03:50 PM (#4679499)
The explanation that facebook skews younger has to be the reason why Louisiana tips toward the Yankees. I know dozens of Cardinals and Braves fans and not a single Yankee fan. I would think the state would go Astros, Cardinals, Braves in that order before the Yankees. The Ron Guidry influence might still be there in Acadiana, but I don't see it elsewhere.

Interesting map.
   47. OCF Posted: April 04, 2014 at 04:51 PM (#4679539)
And NE Oklahoma, I don't get either. Tulsa is Colorado's affiliate, I don't even know any Royals fans, and KC games are broadcast with much less regularity than Ranger and Cardinal games.

I can explain, and it has nothing to do with the current affiliation of the Tulsa minor league team. (Tulsa teams have had many different affiliations over the years.) It's ancestral. It's in my screen name, which is short for "Old Cardinal Fan," and I grew up in NE Oklahoma. It dates from a time of radio networks being the the main vehicle of dissemination, of the voices of Harry Caray and Jack Buck coming from a million radios over many states. Before the Royals, Rangers, and Rockies existed, the Cardinal radio network spanned a large swath of territory from St. Louis westward. (The KC A's existed, but had approximately no fans.) When local affiliates of the network fell down, there was still the mother ship, KMOX, coming through on ionospheric skip. When I was a kid, Tulsa newspapers would use their sports pages to promote weekend baseball-watching bus excursions to St. Louis.

I'm actually surprised that the Royals carved out as large a territory as they did on this map against the Cardinal tide.
   48. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: April 04, 2014 at 04:58 PM (#4679548)
Prior to 1966, and well into the 1980s, the Cardinals were also the team of the south.
   49. OCF Posted: April 04, 2014 at 04:59 PM (#4679549)
Oh, wait a minute: I just figured out that Dale Sams was asking about why there are Yankee fans in NE Oklahoma.

The most populated counties, including Tulsa and Washington, are painted as Cardinal counties. The Yankee fandom belongs to less populated counties. I will note that my father was actually a Yankee fan - he grew up in South Dakota and worked in Kansas City before moving to Oklahoma. What the map shows to me is that there's a background level of Yankee fandom absolutely everywhere that emerges on top when no other team gets the upper hand. I would assume that most of those far-flung Yankee counties have a wide dispersal of teams, and a low percentage for the top one.

For a particular NE Oklahoma connection to the Yankees: he retired 45 years ago and he's been dead for a long time, but people still remember Mickey Mantle.
   50. Nasty Nate Posted: April 04, 2014 at 05:00 PM (#4679550)
There's just no reason to expect a young New Yorker baseball fan to adopt the Mets as his or her team, barring parents with incentives to keep it in the family.


Isn't that a big exception? Inheriting a team from a parent is a huge factor. Most of the kids of those Mets fans in their late 30's now will become Mets fans. Or maybe cities with multiple teams have lots of split-up families, I don't know.
   51. OCF Posted: April 04, 2014 at 05:02 PM (#4679552)
Prior to 1966, and well into the 1980s, the Cardinals were also the team of the south.

Now the Braves are the ones with a vast territory in the South. The early years of cable TV and superstations?
   52. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: April 04, 2014 at 05:08 PM (#4679555)
Now the Braves are the ones with a vast territory in the South. The early years of cable TV and superstations?


Absolutely. Ted Turner's long reach as the franchise owner, and "the Superstation" as the first national TV broadcast of "America's Team." Basically, Turner did with TBS and the Braves what the Cards did with KMOX. And the team reinforces that territory with their current "This Is Braves Country" advertising campaigns. They are also brutal about marketing against the Rays in northern Florida. There are still a lot of "old Cardinals fans" in Atlanta who come out for STL series, though, but anyone under the age of 50 is near universally a Braves fan, from Charleston down to Jacksonville, all the way across Alabama and into Mississippi. (There's a reason the Braves' only minor league affiliate not located near Atlanta is in Pearl, MS.)
   53. Karl from NY Posted: April 04, 2014 at 05:19 PM (#4679559)
Isn't that a big exception? Inheriting a team from a parent is a huge factor. Most of the kids of those Mets fans in their late 30's now will become Mets fans.

I disagree, I think they're more likely to just become disinterested in baseball or sports in general. Only teams who thoroughly dominate their city's mindshare and lifeblood can keep picking up generational new fans through years of badness. Places like the Red Sox, Cleveland Browns, Maple Leafs, Cowboys. But there's too much else going on in New York for a bad team to attract new passion, inherited from parents or not.
   54. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: April 04, 2014 at 05:25 PM (#4679563)
I'm pretty sure a similar map for Canada would indicate a) that the Tigers have a fair amount of fans in Southern Ontario

No doubt -- they share a "border" with the Blue Jays much like the Yankees/Red Sox "border." I'm also surprised at how far into the southwest of the state they have more fans than the Cubs -- my strong suspicion is that the Cubs have lost a lot of pull in the SWmost seven or eight counties of Michigan. There's a really small sliver left, and a small sliver of Brewer fans in the UP, but they've otherwise captured the whole state.

They've always had Toledo and environs.

   55. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: April 04, 2014 at 05:25 PM (#4679564)
Agreed with Karl. In single-team towns the generational aspect of team loyalty is more at play than it ever will be in NY. Now, if the Yankees fall on hard times for an extended period, the Mets might see some pick up of baseball fans via family loyalty. But if the Yankees continue to field successful teams and the Mets continue to not, young baseball fans will associate to the winners with the exciting players. The Braves could go a few years as terrible and still "Braves country" would remain loyal more or less. There aren't a lot of other options. The Mets don't have that luxury.

And I think this is exacerbated by social networking and always-on media access to teams hundreds of miles away.
   56. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: April 04, 2014 at 05:28 PM (#4679565)
It's shocking that the Mets don't even have something like Nassau County or Queens (!) to call theirs. Wow.

   57. BDC Posted: April 04, 2014 at 05:40 PM (#4679569)
From much of Nassau County or even Queens itself, it can be as easy to get to Yankee Stadium as it is to get to the Mets'; and of course it's all the same media area. I lived in both Nassau & Queens over the years, and went to YS ten times for every time I went to Shea, at least.
   58. BDC Posted: April 04, 2014 at 05:41 PM (#4679570)
And now I just need to learn why St. Helena Parish, LA, is full of Orioles (?) fans.
   59. Karl from NY Posted: April 04, 2014 at 05:41 PM (#4679571)
Why does everybody think that's shocking? The location of the stadium just doesn't matter. Team loyalties are formed in childhood before you're going to games regularly. The Mets' yearly attendance is less than the population of Queens. The median number of Mets games attended by a Queens resident is zero. It just doesn't matter. TV matters, as all the still nationally dispersed fans of WGN and WTBS will show you.
   60. thetailor Posted: April 04, 2014 at 05:54 PM (#4679582)
I'm 30. I'd say that the ratio of Yankee fans to Mets fans in my age bracket is roughly 2:1 among the kids I grew up with. I was 3 in 1986 -- too young to remember. By the time I really came around to baseball in 1997, the Mets were on the verge of becoming interesting again. But I have to say, I inherited Met fandom from my Dad and my geographic location.

I find the ratio among city transplants to be much higher than 2:1 in favor of the Yankees. Given that so many New Yorkers were not born here, I'd guess that the ratio among transplants is more like 6:1 in favor of the Yanks. Overall, the Mets are badly outnumbered.

Not only to the Mets have less success than the Yanks, they just have these long horrific stretches of awfulness. If they were puttering along at 82 wins I think you could justify getting some new fans in your region. 74 wont do it.
   61. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: April 04, 2014 at 05:55 PM (#4679585)
Why does everybody think that's shocking? The location of the stadium just doesn't matter. Team loyalties are formed in childhood before you're going to games regularly. The Mets' yearly attendance is less than the population of Queens. The median number of Mets games attended by a Queens resident is zero. It just doesn't matter. TV matters, as all the still nationally dispersed fans of WGN and WTBS will show you.

I'm actually far more surprised at Nassau and Suffolk counties. The Mets should not be trailing the Yankees in the heart of NY Islander country (and there's no way they were even 20 years ago ... right?)

I wonder whether Nassau and Suffolk are Ranger, not Islander, counties. There's no reason for an exact parallel there, but you have the same dynamic in hockey -- a blueblood franchise in/practically in the city (*) and a relative upstart in the outer boroughs/exurbs with a great deal of 1980s success and a more sordid recent history.

(*) One very cool, the other ... well ... not, but we digress.

   62. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: April 04, 2014 at 05:58 PM (#4679588)
I find the ratio among city transplants to be much higher than 2:1 in favor of the Yankees. Given that so many New Yorkers were not born here, I'd guess that the ratio among transplants is more like 6:1 in favor of the Yanks.

See now, that's just completely ###### up. Unless you weren't a baseball fan before you moved here, how can you possibly move here and root for the Yankees? It's unpossible.
   63. Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat Posted: April 04, 2014 at 06:00 PM (#4679590)
Regarding North Carolina, I think that the Durham Bulls going from a Braves A ball affiliate to the Rays AAA team was a pretty big deal. The Bulls are the flagship minor league team in the state and the affiliation meant something. Also as Mike noted, the state has transplants from all over everywhere, and no true home team. I'll bet that in some counties where the Yankees have a plurality the count is something like Yankees 20%, Braves 15%, everyone else 65%.

The slow decline of the Braves of TBS is a huge deal as well.

I'd love to see the raw data.
   64. GregD Posted: April 04, 2014 at 06:07 PM (#4679597)
The Braves definitely took over middle Tennessee and central Kentucky in the 80s as TBS crept in. Prior to that, everyone I knew of was a Reds fan, and Reds games were on the local stations. West in each state you'd get Cardinals. But there's a certain age--now in the early 30s--where everyone became a Braves fan. Combo of TBS and decline of the Reds
   65. DL from MN Posted: April 04, 2014 at 06:08 PM (#4679599)
It might be interesting to see who the #2 team in each county is. I'll bet the Yankees cover most of the US.
   66. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: April 04, 2014 at 06:19 PM (#4679605)
The Yankees are also the default baseball team of non-baseball fans. The Yankees have a lot of "fans" because of Jay-Z and a general desire to associate with New York.
   67. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: April 04, 2014 at 06:23 PM (#4679608)
If there was a way of identifying the least-liked team in every city, the Yankees would also blanket the country, possibly even in some parts of New York.

Beating the #### out of everyone for 90-plus years earns love and hatred in damn near equal amounts.

   68. Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat Posted: April 04, 2014 at 06:29 PM (#4679610)
If there was a way of identifying the least-liked team in every city, the Yankees would also blanket the country, possibly even in some parts of New York.

To be pedantic, the Yankees are probably the most-disliked as opposed to the least-liked.

EDIT: That's what you meant, of course.
   69. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: April 04, 2014 at 06:42 PM (#4679618)
To be pedantic, the Yankees are probably the most-disliked as opposed to the least-liked.


Of course. That's phrased much better.
   70. Karl from NY Posted: April 04, 2014 at 06:46 PM (#4679620)
I wonder whether Nassau and Suffolk are Ranger, not Islander, counties.

Yes, thanks to 1994, and by a wide margin. Anyone whose hockey fandom came during or after that is about 75% likely a Rangers fan even on Long Island. And ever since the John Spano mess, the Isles have been a total laughingstock. The proportion of Islanders fans under age 25 is maybe 10%.
   71. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: April 04, 2014 at 07:01 PM (#4679629)

Yep. Every Mets fan I know falls between the ages of 35-50.

Not for another 6 months, I don't!

I'm actually far more surprised at Nassau and Suffolk counties. The Mets should not be trailing the Yankees in the heart of NY Islander country (and there's no way they were even 20 years ago ... right?)

When the Mets were better than the Yankees (in the mid-late 80s), they probably controlled some counties or at least were closer than they are today. This was when Seinfeld had a Mets poster in his apartment and Keith Hernandez made semi-regular appearances on the show.

The Mets have had some pretty good/exciting stretches since then, but the Yankees have been better. Combine that with things like their ties to Madoff and well publicized financial difficulties, and it's not hard to figure out why they don't control any counties today.
   72. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 04, 2014 at 07:53 PM (#4679649)
Looks like a lot of potential for the Nationals to improve their standing in Virginia.

Supposedly, something like 65% of the Nationals ticket buyers are from northern Virginia, so they are doing something right, even if there is room to grow the TV audience in the more distant parts of the Old Dominion.
   73. The District Attorney Posted: April 04, 2014 at 08:48 PM (#4679673)
Facebook users who skew younger
I think Mark Zuckerberg is worried that Facebook skews overly old, not overly young. :) I mean, yeah, I'm sure it's a lower average age than people who don't use computers at all, but...

Combine that with things like their ties to Madoff and well publicized financial difficulties, and it's not hard to figure out why [the Mets] don't control any counties today.
Yeah, I think the financial difficulties have so much to do with it. But ironically, it's not even the fact that the team's payroll is limited. It's the fact that the Wilpons have actually succeeded in defusing that issue. It feels pointless to get mad anymore. Anyone with any desire to deal with reality has accepted the status quo: The team is kind of going to try, but not really.

A bad team can -- and actually usually does -- have a narrative that makes you want to keep watching and find out if things ever get better. Obviously, if the team was good recently, then people are outraged when things "start going wrong." Or if something crazy is happening -- Vince Coleman is throwing fireworks at reporters, Tony Bernazard is challenging players to shirtless fights, etc. -- at least you've got a story to be interested in. But Wilpon has always hated drama, and he's done a helluva job of completely eliminating any storylines whatsoever around this team that you could even follow. It's boring. Nobody cares. And it feels like the team hasn't been good in forever, and will never be good.

None of that is a criticism of Alderson, whom I think has generally done very well. And I actually do think the team will be decent in a couple of years. But rooting for the Mets is like rooting for RC Cola. It's unremarkable, it's soullessly corporate, and it has no larger ambition. There's not much to latch onto there.
   74. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: April 04, 2014 at 08:59 PM (#4679679)
I think Mark Zuckerberg is worried that Facebook skews overly old, not overly young. :) I mean, yeah, I'm sure it's a lower average age than people who don't use computers at all, but...

It's probably a lower average age than the overall baseball-watching population. That was my only point.
   75. Karl from NY Posted: April 04, 2014 at 10:40 PM (#4679720)
I'm just happy we had a nice Mets hijack on this thread. Feels like old times with Sam M.
   76. boteman is here Posted: April 05, 2014 at 12:59 AM (#4679779)
That map could be improved in its presentation. A fair percentage of people are color-blind and the authors could make it easier for the rest by using textures instead of solid colors. Maybe right-slanted diagonals for some, left-slanting for others, dots for still others. It would make it a lot easier to discern the Orioles from the Angels from the Tigers from the Giants in places like Oklahoma and Louisiana, for example.

As for the Yankees infiltrating Florida: yeah, down here at the southeast end it's like New York with palm trees.
   77. Rafael Bellylard: Built like a Panda. Posted: April 05, 2014 at 01:40 AM (#4679785)
Not to turn this into a political hijack, but Florida has recently passed New York in population, and it's due to a lot of New Yorkers moving down here. Nice weather and no state taxes are nothing to be sneezed at.

South Florida might as well be the 6th borough of NYC. Orlando's not far behind.
   78. Swedish Chef Posted: April 05, 2014 at 04:51 AM (#4679805)
Not to turn this into a political hijack

Sounds more like a demographic hijack, we are very close to a zip code thread here.
   79. Jim Kaat on a hot Gene Roof Posted: April 05, 2014 at 05:18 AM (#4679809)
Every Mets fan I know falls between the ages of 35-50.


Worst generation ever.

As for the changing nature of Southerners' allegiances, the 80's cable boom is absolutely the reason. WGN and TBS showed Nazi Child Molesters and Barves games, respectively, even to small town people, while the local team's games were only occasionally broadcast even here in NE Arkansas, Cardinals Country for sure. People were worn down with time and persistence; admittedly, that the Cards were meh in the 1990s while the Barves were consistently good in that period was another factor, but not as important. A man I knew, my co-worker on his son's farm in the mid-late 1990s, who'd lived most of his life in this area and was in his mid-70s at the time, was a diehard Barves fan, converted in his later years by that damned always-on TBS blaring the various doucheries of Larry Jones every freaking summer night. Nowadays, Barves fans are very common in the area, easily the second most popular team, yet the friction/rivalry thing between Barves and Cards fans is pretty muted. As for the Cubs, their freakish admirers are still thankfully few and at that usually found only in the local cities. They are always either Illinois transplants or were brainwashed at an early age by WGN, then perversely chose to keep their allegiance into adulthood as a form of family rebellion and silly social contrarianism. The transplants, when not smug and arrogant, are tolerated; the local rebels, because they are so obnoxious, are justly despised. The few fans of Northeastern teams are considered ######## at very best; fans of west coast teams are considered suspicious; fans of AL teams of other regions, however, are often considered cute or quirky and are accepted.
   80. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: April 05, 2014 at 09:22 AM (#4679839)
I'm a Mets fan that was really into the late 1980 teams. I was too young to stay up for the 1986 games, but my parents taped them (on Betamax!) for me, and I watched the heck out of the 1986 championship VHS. My dad is to blame for the loss against the Dodgers in 1988, he said he wanted his goddamned "whole nine innings" in the top of the 9th in game 4. I still haven't forgiven him for that hex.

Color me surprised that the Mets don't have a county, as well. They were considered a good team as recently as the fall of 2008, and they made deep playoff runs twice in the last 15 years despite being generally feckless.
   81. JE (Jason) Posted: April 05, 2014 at 10:04 AM (#4679847)
When the Mets were better than the Yankees (in the mid-late 80s), they probably controlled some counties or at least were closer than they are today. This was when Seinfeld had a Mets poster in his apartment and Keith Hernandez made semi-regular appearances on the show.

To be sure, Seinfeld ran from 1989 until 1998. By the time Keith appeared on the show, the Mets were a fifth-place team.
   82. JE (Jason) Posted: April 05, 2014 at 10:08 AM (#4679848)
It is common for Turks living in Anatolian cities and villages to root for their local soccer club while still identifying with one of the three Istanbul juggernauts -- Fenerbahce, Galatasaray, and Besiktas. Actually, even Prime Minister Erdogan, who grew up in Istanbul, claims to support both Kasimpasa (named after the neighborhood in which he grew up) and Fener.

I am pretty sure this is true in other European cities as well.
   83. Dale Sams Posted: April 05, 2014 at 12:04 PM (#4679885)
Oh, wait a minute: I just figured out that Dale Sams was asking about why there are Yankee fans in NE Oklahoma.


It's even worse. I just read the map wrong. I saw all that blue and figured Tulsa had gone to the Royals and couldn't understand why. Having looked at it again, I see they went Cardinals, which as you explained makes perfect sense.
   84. Karl from NY Posted: April 05, 2014 at 12:06 PM (#4679887)
They were considered a good team as recently as the fall of 2008, and they made deep playoff runs twice in the last 15 years despite being generally feckless.

Twice in 15 years? Why in the world would any impressionable child or incoming transplant pick up on that over the crosstown team making playoff runs in 14 of those 15 years instead?
   85. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: April 05, 2014 at 12:15 PM (#4679892)
Anyone whose hockey fandom came during or after that is about 75% likely a Rangers fan even on Long Island.

"POTVIN SUCKS!!"
   86. Flynn Posted: April 05, 2014 at 12:27 PM (#4679896)
Keith Hernandez and the Mets featured prominently on Seinfeld because Jerry Seinfeld is a Mets fan, that's why.

Pointing that out, the Mets, by all accounts, certainly seemed very popular in the 80s, at least as popular as the Yankees. Their fanbase has just been ground down by losing, ineptitude, and Wilpons. I don't think their fanbase is in any long-term danger. Ignoring the family thing, eventually the Mets will be good again. And eventually they'll even be good while the Yankees are bad, and the bandwagoners will come out of the woodwork then.

If you want sitcom-related moments in sports time, both Seinfeld and Friends had prominent storylines involving the NY Rangers. that seems difficult to fathom today.
   87. GGC don't think it can get longer than a novella Posted: April 05, 2014 at 02:20 PM (#4679946)
I don't recall the Rangers on Seinfeld. I DO recall Putty being a Devil's fan.
   88. Canker Soriano Posted: April 05, 2014 at 02:41 PM (#4679956)
I don't recall the Rangers on Seinfeld. I DO recall Putty being a Devil's fan.

FWIW, the Devils were playing the Rangers in the game they all went to in that episode ("The Face Painter"). But I remember it more as a Devils episode than a Rangers episode.

Seinfeld hit all 4 major sports in NY at one point or another during its run, plus the US Open.
   89. JE (Jason) Posted: April 05, 2014 at 03:13 PM (#4679972)
"POTVIN SUCKS!!"

I heard that shout no more than four years ago from a Rangers fan siting next to me ... at Nats Park, of all places.

Has any other derogatory razzing of an opposing player lasted more than 30 years after the dude retired?
   90. GGC don't think it can get longer than a novella Posted: April 05, 2014 at 03:47 PM (#4679998)
Seinfeld hit all 4 major sports in NY at one point or another during its run, plus the US Oen.

c
And the marathon. Plus Aqueduct, if you consider horse racing a sport.
   91. GregD Posted: April 05, 2014 at 03:56 PM (#4680004)
And the marathon. Plus Aqueduct, if you consider horse racing a sport.
It is! For the horses...
   92. Dale Sams Posted: April 05, 2014 at 04:12 PM (#4680022)
And the marathon. Plus Aqueduct, if you consider horse racing a sport.


And softball.
   93. Rafael Bellylard: Built like a Panda. Posted: April 05, 2014 at 04:15 PM (#4680024)
And softball.


Oh c'mon. Softball's not a sport. At least not the way I play it.
   94. GGC don't think it can get longer than a novella Posted: April 05, 2014 at 04:18 PM (#4680026)
Jerry once claimed that Kramer was a CFL fan.
   95. Karl from NY Posted: April 06, 2014 at 01:19 PM (#4680326)
Has any other derogatory razzing of an opposing player lasted more than 30 years after the dude retired?

Pete Rose still gets pretty roundly jeered. And we could see Bonds and Canseco and the rest of the PED crowd still hearing it then too.
   96. JE (Jason) Posted: April 06, 2014 at 03:12 PM (#4680429)
Has any other derogatory razzing of an opposing player lasted more than 30 years after the dude retired?

Pete Rose still gets pretty roundly jeered. And we could see Bonds and Canseco and the rest of the PED crowd still hearing it then too.

Even when they're neither introduced nor in attendance?

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