Why is MLB Decreasing in Popularity

5 Sad Reasons The Official American Sport, Baseball, Is Dying In Popularity

Baseball has always been one of America's most popular sports, but it's slowing dying.

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Baseball has always been a big part of my life. I played baseball from a young age to my late teens. I loved other sports, but baseball has always had a special place in my heart. As the older I got, the more I realized that baseballs popularity is in a decline and will continue to plummet if something is not fixed, here are five reasons why I think MLB popularity is diminishing. MLB is still America's pastime, but with it declining in popularity it is no longer going to be America's pastime.

1. Games take too long

baseball game

Baseball is a very boring sport to watch. The average MLB game in 2018 was just about three hours, but Major League Baseball is trying new ways to speed up the game. Many people don't like to sit in the hot sun for three hours to watch two teams combine for four runs. Even with adding clocks to speed up between innings, the attendance for baseball games just keeps plummeting.

2. The baseball fan base isn't diverse

baseball crowd

Baseball's fan base is dull, but theirs always room for improvement! From many websites, it says that baseball's main demography is mainly older white men. Baseball has become a much more diverse league then it was decades ago, but it isn't diverse enough. Comparing to the fan bases of the NBA and the NFL, baseball is not diverse at all. MLB has improved the diversity in the fan base over the past decades, but it needs to change something fast.

3. There's no true icon

bryce harper

Baseball doesn't have a true icon like the other popular American Sports. The NBA has Lebron James, NFL has Tom Brady, and the NHL has Sidney Crosby. Who is the true icon for the MLB? Many people say Bryce Harper is or selective of players are but there's no true icon for MLB these days, there are many players that are superb in the MLB, but there is no Lebron James in the MLB. The MLB needs an icon so kids have a role model to look up to.

4. Too many games in a season

world series

Every year, thirty MLB teams play 162 regular season games. 162 games in a season are too much. The wear and tear the players receive while playing five to six games a week spanning over six months. Plus don't forget the extra month they play for the title. Baseball should shorten the league a couple of weeks. Baseball is starting earlier then it used to, but it still is too long.

5. Ticket prices

ticket prices

The average MLB ticket in 2018 was around thirty-two dollars. Since 2000, the average cost of a ticket for MLB has increased by nearly fifteen dollars. The MLB ticket sales have gone down in the past few years, but at the same time, the revenue for the MLB has gone up. As the years go on, ticket sales will increase. I think ticket sales need to decrease a bit, cheap tickets will lour more people to games.

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Everything The Student Athlete Loses When They Move On From Sports

Enjoy it while it lasts.

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We used to call it "flipping the switch." You would go through eight hours of school (somehow) and then your mentality would automatically change. The worries and stress from the school day would dwindle as you put on your cleats and begin to warm up. Anything that was going on in your life didn't matter when you hit the dirt. You create lifelong friendships with the girls you spent every day with for months at a time. Teammates who see you susceptible after a bad game and on cloud nine after one of your bests.

You develop a routine and superstitions. Hitting your bat on the inside of your cleat before you hit, chewing a certain type of gum on the volleyball court, how many times you spin the ball before you shoot a free throw, whatever your quirk was, you 100% believed it would make you play better. You practice in your free time with your dad, devote three to five months of your school year to a team, and play all summer long with your travel team as you live off hotel breakfast. Then one day, it's all over.

It is a feeling that nobody can prepare you for. They say enjoy it while it lasts but you never really understand what you'll be walking away from when you play your last game and hang it up for good. You lose a part of yourself when you're no longer an athlete. I forgot what it feels like to be competitive and be a part of something that is bigger than myself. It has been two years since I've played my last softball game and not a day goes by when I don't miss it. I didn't play because I wanted to go pro or even to the collegiate level, but I played because it was an escape and helped me become who I am.

You begin to forget what it felt like to hit the sweet spot on a bat, what it sounded like to have an audience cheer for you as you stand alone on second base and see your family in the stands, to hear the metal spikes of your cleats on concrete when walking in the dugout. It's simple things about the game you love that brought you pure joy and an escape from the world and the thoughts in your head. Batting practice was always mine. Focusing on nothing but the next pitch and how hard I could hit it.

When you have to watch the game from the other side of the fence, you realize how much pressure you put on yourself when you played. It's just a game. Make as many memories as you can and enjoy every inning because when you leave sports behind you have to find your inner athlete in other things. Create a workout routine, joining a club sport or intramurals, or even becoming a coach. As much as I miss the sport, I am thankful for everything it brought me. It taught me how to be a good friend, respect others around me, and to push myself to discover what I was capable of.

So, enjoy it while it lasts.

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Dexter Fowler Deserves An Apology

Roughly a fourth of the way through the season, it's very clear that a lot of us were wrong about Fowler.

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Baseball is a mental game just as much, if not more of a physical one. Baseball is one of those unique games where failure is present at all times. If you hold a .300 batting average, you've got a pretty good chance of getting into the Hall of Fame. For context, Ty Cobb holds the record for highest career batting average at .366 and was inducted into the Hall of Fame. In any other sport, if you're only successful 30% of the time, you're rarely viewed as excellent in your sport.

But I don't think the nature of the game usually sways fans from shortsighted opinions and conclusions about the players, especially if they're on our own team. Cardinals fans went through something very similar with our own Dexter Fowler, and some of us really dragged him through the mud. In the second year of his five-year, $82 million deal, Fowler had the worst statistical years of his career. A .180 batting average with a .278 OBP were the cornerstones on what was a very confusing year for many Cardinals fans.

But I want to be very clear when I say that there were two camps with the Fowler situation: those who thought the year was simply a statistical outlier and those who thought that Fowler was at the end of his career, the Cardinals were foolish to give him the money and that the team would be better off trading him if they could find a suitable trade partner for such "broken goods". And maybe this is just my biased Cardinals Twitter point of view, but I felt like the second group was definitely the vocal majority.

But what I think we often forget to remember is there are real people out there playing that game. As weird as that may sound, sports fans often forget that athletes are just as vulnerable to the mental lows that plague so many everyday Americans. Dexter Fowler spent the majority of last season in a deep depression that was both caused and a source of his poor performance on the field. And I'm sure all the negative press he got and the angry fans in his mentions didn't help in the slightest.

But the Cardinals never gave up on him, and for good reason. The numbers Fowler has put up this season are outstanding thus far with still roughly 80% of the season left to play. The commitment the front office showed to Fowler is a reflection of the culture established that makes players want to come and play for this organization. The Cardinals never gave up on him, and so many fans should have taken that same approach. As I said earlier, those are real people out there playing in those Cardinal uniforms.

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