Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Red Sox Home Attendance Drops In First Half

(FenwayNation Photo)
They may be in first place and they may be endearing themselves to The Nation as Idiots II, but they sure aren't sticking as many posteriors into the 1912-era seats at Fenway as they used to. Up to the All-Star Break, the Red Sox have filled Fenway Park to 91.6% capacity through 47 home dates. Sounds good, right? In fact, it's the third best percentage in all of baseball. However, by the end of last year, seats at Fenway were filled to over capacity (101.4%)—the best mark in MLB. And don't forget, we had 'Captain Queeg' Valentine running aground the good ship Yawkey to its worst season in a generation (69 total wins). Why are fewer people flocking to America's Most Cramped Ballpark this year than last? Lots of probable reasons: the cumulative effect of Black September 2011 and all of 2012; the ridiculously high ticket prices (remember how the NOG self-righteously touted the fact that they weren't raising prices?); and the fact that Boston hasn't seen any playoff action since Jonathan Papelbon blew Game Three of the 2009 LDS. Think ownership is worried? Maybe. Their good friend Bud is about to consummate a new national TV deal that will net each team another $25 million next year—and the Sox have managed to sneak under the salary tax threshold. And, best of all, John Henry's investment of $750 million has virtually doubled in value to $1.312 billion. So, do you think they really care? As a Liverpool fan might say, "Not bloody likely".