Monday, September 23, 2013

Rays Attendance: 2013 Post-Mortem

A crowd of 17,830 saw an absolute thriller Monday afternoon at Tropicana Field, the final home game (we think) of the regular season.

That brought the Rays' season total up to 1,510,300 and their per-game average down to 18,646, the lowest since 2007.  That will once again place the team last in the MLB attendance standings, despite all the ugliness in Miami.

Everyone has an excuse: the dome, The Bridge, the mayor, etc.  But there's also a preponderance of evidence all the attendance complaints are a self-fulfilling prophecy.

It's a theory first addressed on this blog three years ago.  And with no new stadium in sight, there's a good chance stadium criticisms will continue to rise while attendance numbers continue to sink.


  1. Exactly why st.pete cant support a major league team. St.Pete is a minor league city. Foster has to be humialted as every st.pete resident should be. The rays owe st.pete nothing!!!!

    1. Show us where on the doll St. Pete touched you.

    2. Hello Stu,
      Nothing is EXACTLY, what the Rays have offered St. Pete for the ability to look in Tampa.

  2. Just cannot understand St. Pete people. They don't deserve baseball and they don't want Rays baseball in their town. They talk about taxpayer money cannot be spent on new stadium. That's nice. Then how about just let them leave? Every year people all over the world talk shit about St. Pete and its people. Crap city low class people blah blah. It will only hurt St Pete reputation. about just get out of this crap by letting Rays GTFO as they are not interested in baseball anyway, and not wanting to worry about using taxpayer's money for Rays baseball and its new stadium? Sounds like win-win for me..

  3. Hilarious to me that all this virulent St. Pete bashing does is reveal that other parts of Tampa Bay have a major inferiority complex. And if having sports teams somehow assuages that inferiority, and they're willing to pay the hefty price, then hey, they're more than welcome to them. I'm already on record that the Rays should be allowed to move wherever they want. Meanwhile, we'll still have our beaches, our world-class museums and galleries, our burgeoning skyline and waterfront and restaurant and arts scene. St. Pete was here long before the Rays arrived. It will continue to thrive long after they're gone.

  4. Lmao what skyline? There are no beaches in downtown st.pete. Lets not forget the failed lens project. You are grasping at straws Brendan.

  5. Yeah - let's all brace for the avalanche of hand-wringing by our local journalists who want us to realize that if we don't immediately give *hundreds* of millions of dollars to a billionaire owner, we risk a Biblical baseball disaster.

    It really pains me to see them tie our utter and complete civic existence to whether or not a bunch of men run around playing a kids' game. There's a million other things to worry about and deal with in this town.

    All of these idiots just want us to keep tossing money on the bonfire of pro sports. As if there's nothing else that deserves it, or that people in this area will also willingly spend their money on. By this moronic reasoning, we should also be funding every lousy restaurant that can't make money.

    1. I don't if know this (I'm guessing not), but the Rays nor Tampa has ever said anything about the financing of a ballpark, so please save your time by not assuming things like your buddy Noah likes to do...
      Also, I don't if you this either (again, I'm guessing not), but the Rays is a cash-cow for St.Pete, name another business or "restaurant" in St.Pete that draws 10-15k out-of-towners spending hundreds over 81 days a year, not including jobs, added wealthy residents, and global exposure? We know, if it wasn't the Trop, they would be at the Tyrone Square Mall, lol...
      And, I'm trying to figure out why someone that's seems to be more of the never-was-picked-to-play type of person so you talk crap about the kids playing as a smoke screen to your truly hurt feelings spends time being an "assuming Nancy negative" on here?

    2. Tampa mayor Bob Buckhorn has spoken about financing:

      And the point is, the Rays haven't yet discussed financing (or compensation for breaking their current contract). You don't think that's a problem considering they are the ones asking for a new stadium?

      Also, the Trop doesn't draw 10-15k out of towners a night....

    3. Dufala - I DO love your incoherent, MLB spoon-fed logic about all things pro-sports. Especially the lame personal jabs - so only people who played pro sports can weigh in on this? I doubt that includes armchair quarterbacks like yourself, either.

      But I still hope that you can seriously put down your Happy Meal and realize a few facts here:

      - No pro sports team in the last decade (at least) has paid for 100% of its stadium. You're a fool to think the financing is going to be handled exclusively by the team.
      - MLB is not a "cash-cow" to St. Pete. That relies on unfounded anecdotes from the biased people in MLB. Even if we're making a few million (unlikely), we're absolutely spending several million hosting this ungrateful team.
      - people travel to Florida for beaches, tourism, etc. Those same people are more likely to go to restaurants and shops than waste hours getting ripped off by the Rays for parking and sub-par food. And those restaurants, hotels and shops are the ones collecting extra taxes to support the Rays team welfare.

      You're all for throwing hundreds of millions more at the Rays than can be realistically recouped. They're also trying to hand back a worthless stadium and steal more land and funding to build a new one.

      Re-read my post - baseball is a CHILD'S game. What does that say about fans like yourself who are willing to bankrupt our city to support your obsessive fetish for it?

    4. Well, "not having permission to speak about", and "suggesting" is an oxymoron. Though if the leaked "suggestion" was accurate, then what are we beefing about with there not being any extra money from the "taxpayers"???
      And, Pauly, "I do love" how you revert to talking shit about someone when you don't have any other factual comeback like a true right-wing extremist. Though I understand, if I was as misinformed as you, I'd say those things to...

  6. Rays attendance figures look pretty close the Expos attendance figures through the mid-90s. The only difference is the Expos fans watched mainly bad teams and every notable player leave through FA eventually causing attendance to crumble below 1 million. Here the Rays have had an incredible run. A management team that has spent smartly to keep a great core together. Sadly no one is there to appreciate it.

    What do you guys think will happen to attendance if Price leaves via FA, the young pitchers don't develop as hoped, Myers turns is the 2013 version of Chris Sabo, Longoria has a bunch of injury plagued years and the team has a 4 year run of 65 win clubs while rebuilding? I think we're looking at attendances closer to 10k. Suffice it to say I think the Rays performance is propping up the market. And I'm starting to question the Tampa area in general as a viable home for an MLB franchise. I mean truly we know Tampa would be better, but are we talking 3k better. It would still be pretty awful.

    1. "I mean truly we know Tampa would be better, but are we talking 3k better.", it will be more about the quality of attendance then quantity...

    2. Err . . . way I remember things, the Expos were competitive every year, and on their way to an almost certain World Series win, when out of greed, Bud Selig blew up Major League Baseball, canceling the remainder of the season AND the post-season, and the good people of Montreal (rightfully) turned their backs on Major League Baseball.

      Funny how people remember things differently.

    3. Well you remember it wrong. The Expos avg 24.5 k during 1994. In 95, they were terrible and avg 18k. In 96 they were good avg 20k. In 97 they won 78 games and avg 18.5. Then Pedro and Henry Rodriguez walked. The year before Moises Alou. 2 years before it was Larry Walker, Marquis Grissom, John Wettland.

      I think Pedro was the straw. Even when the team ran out competitive rosters the fans never really came back. Avg between 8k and 12.5k for the next 7 seasons.

      An ownership group in Montreal is now talking about a downtown ballpark. Obviously Montreal will be the threat to the Tampa area, to get its act together on a ballpark.

      You just might want to take a really close look and figure out which is a better place for a team. A great team that can only avg 18k. This is really terrible. As I said imagine how they'll draw during a rebuild. Also keeping in mind Montreal has a real corporate base and poutine. I have little doubt if MLB up and moved the current playoff caliber Rays to Montreal they would draw at least as well, even at the big O. And if they can get funding for a new stadium, its game over Tampa Bay.

    4. Umm . . . no. I don't remember it wrong:

      "The Montreal Expos, who had never won a division title, were running away with the National League East, on pace for 105 wins. Led by a pair of 27-year-old outfielders in Moises Alou and Larry Walker (and with a good season from Sean Berry at third base) the Expos were third in the league in runs scored.

      They also had the league’s second-best pitching with Pedro Martinez (3.42) having the fourth best ERA in the rotation behind the less celebrated Butch Henry (2.43), Jeff Fassero (2.99) and Ken Hill (3.32).

      Attendance was at a level not seen in Montreal since 1983, but after the strike, a precipitous drop began, halving attendance in four years.

      1994: 24,543

      1995: 18,189

      1996: 19,959

      1997: 18,489

      1998: 11,275

      1999-2004: 10,162 average"

      At any rate, there is no need for me to take a closer look and figure out which is a better place for the team. I'm a lifelong baseball fan, living in St. Pete, who has attended dozens of games in the few years I've been living here, and at this point, I don't care where they go. Just so long as I no longer have to listen to their whines and their greed.

    5. The Expos did get a really nice bump during 1994. But their attendance 95 & 97 was solid for non-competitive teams. If attendance had stayed at that level during off years, the team would have never moved. Also keep in mind that attendance in baseball was down across the league during 95-97, because the strike turned a lot of people off. And the Expos fans lost more than everyone else. The fact they were pulling in 18-20k per for those years is actually impressive. I know how good that 94 team was. I also know that Pedro leaving was when their fans figured they'd never be more than a major league farm team that can't keep any of its best players.

      The problem with the Rays is that's their attendance during their peak performance years. As I've said, what do you think happens to attendance when the team falters?

  7. NO'ah loves this kind of talk being a Red Sox fan. Being from "Bahstun" the drama appeals to his nature...

    1. When you run out of logic, resort to personal attacks!

    2. There's logic to his posts?

    3. Nope, it's the same stupid, by-the-numbers comments.

      Apparently, Noah is a fan of the Red Sox (yet still can comment negatively on the subsidies they bleed out of Boston).

      To Dufala's feeble imagination that is supposed to discredit his points. Or something. It's nigh-impossible to decipher his misspelled, syntax-filled comments. Clearly, he's a bigger fan of baseball than logic or grammar.

    4. I grew up in Boston, which apparently prevents me from reporting fairly on MLB subsidies & the stadium game.

    5. Wow, wayda not be able to take a joke about a Red Sox fan enjoying the Rays demise...
      Though I'm not "stupid" enough to not realize you haven't ever denounced your love for the Red Sox, and yes, it makes a difference because your ideology on the matter comes from a place that plays in a stadium that was done right from the get go, so you feel that it's reason to think playing at the Trop in St.Pete for over 100 years is as suitable while still having the funds to be as competitve as the Sox. Believe me I understand, I have other "Massholes" as for friends... lol
      And to Pauly, I'm not the person that doesn't like anything but Glen Beck, let alone baseball, and takes time to regurgitate everything Noah says because it's one of the only other websites that reads your digressive posts...