The MLB Has Hit A 15-Year Low Attendance. Can It Be Saved?

The MLB Has An Attendance Problem. What Can We Do?

2018 has seen attendance drop starkly. What is there to do?


Ah, baseball. Long considered the epitome of American pastimes. As sacrosanct as rock music, football, and station wagons. And like all three, dying quickly. Yes, despite the lucrative contracts keeping the league afloat financially, and some teams succeeding, the MLB is suffering from a pervasive illness known as lack-of-attendance. With attendance down to a 15 year low, shrinking by anywhere from 5.9-6.5 percent, baseball this season has not galvanized the fan bases enough to come out and watch. What gives? Well, there are many issues this could be attributed to.

First, let's establish the struggling teams, and how precipitous of a decline these teams have undergone. We have myriad struggling teams, anchored to the bottom of their respective divisions or just not playing exciting baseball. The White Sox, for example, had 974 people attend a game. 974. Yes, that is one game that was on a Monday, but it's indicative of a larger trend (and yes, the Sox are playing some putrid baseball). This isn't isolated to the Sox, however. The Blue Jays? Check. The Orioles? Double check. The Rangers? Triple. This has even occurred among more reputable teams like the Indians. So what gives?

For one, let's not act as if baseball has not acquired a reputation for being boring. It has seemingly been reduced to a novelty amongst the American populace, especially when considering polls which have shown baseball's popularity decline gradually. Weather doesn't help things certainly, and the cold spell could be part of why the initial attendance was so meager for awhile. However, there are definitely other factors. The biggest one? Teams suck. Many teams have not been great or have been beset by attendance issues. The historical predictors are still there, and some teams have been able to weather the storms of poor attendance, but others have not been able to stave off those issues (MARLINS AND RAYS). What can be done to rectify this?

One solution is definitely cost. Considering prices rose by 2.7% on just tickets alone, and that does not factor in other expenditures at baseball games, teams could look at somehow trying to reduce cost. Trying to schedule as many games over the weekend stretches as possible would also be valuable, as games on Monday (like that 974 attendance figure) will definitely have less attendance than a game on Saturday. Some other ideas I have seen floated around are changing the venues (to switch things up a bit), and also make Opening Day more predictable. All I know is that there has to be some sort of solution somewhere. Part of it can also be in increasing entertainment value, though this can probably only come via changes to the draft and free agency. There has to be a solution somewhere.

Overall, baseball has remained popular. I'm of the opinion that almost nothing beats a day at a baseball stadium, whether it be Wrigley Field, Yankee Stadium, Busch Stadium, Dodger, Fenway, etc. However, these declines are still a little worrying despite the TV deals. Many teams, such as the Cubs, Yankees, Dodgers, Red Sox, and Braves have all experienced either increases or consistently high attendance for many years now. However, other teams have NOT experienced this. Regardless of this, baseball remains an American pastime, and it is one that should be upheld and cherished.

For more about the declines, refer to this link.

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When You Give A Girl A Dad

You give her everything

They say that any male can be a father, but it takes a special person to be a dad. That dads are just the people that created the child, so to speak, but rather, dads raise their children to be the best they can be. Further, when you give a little girl a dad, you give her much more than a father; you give her the world in one man.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a rock.

Life is tough, and life is constantly changing directions and route. In a world that's never not moving, a girl needs something stable. She needs something that won't let her be alone; someone that's going to be there when life is going great, and someone who is going to be there for her when life is everything but ideal. Dads don't give up on this daughters, they never will.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a role model.

If we never had someone to look up to, we would never have someone to strive to be. When you give a little girl someone to look up to, you give her someone to be. We copy their mannerisms, we copy their habits, and we copy their work ethic. Little girls need someone to show them the world, so that they can create their own.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her the first boy she will ever love.

And I'm not really sure someone will ever be better than him either. He's the first guy to take your heart, and every person you love after him is just a comparison to his endless, unmatchable love. He shows you your worth, and he shows you what your should be treated like: a princess.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her someone to make proud.

After every softball game, soccer tournament, cheerleading competition, etc., you can find every little girl looking up to their dads for their approval. Later in life, they look to their dad with their grades, internships, and little accomplishments. Dads are the reason we try so hard to be the best we can be. Dads raised us to be the very best at whatever we chose to do, and they were there to support you through everything. They are the hardest critics, but they are always your biggest fans.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a credit card.

It's completely true. Dads are the reason we have the things we have, thank the Lord. He's the best to shop with too, since he usually remains outside the store the entire time till he is summoned in to forge the bill. All seriousness, they always give their little girls more than they give themselves, and that's something we love so much about you.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a shoulder to cry on.

When you fell down and cut yourself, your mom looked at you and told you to suck it up. But your dad, on the other hand, got down on the ground with you, and he let you cry. Then later on, when you made a mistake, or broke up with a boy, or just got sad, he was there to dry your tears and tell you everything was going to be okay, especially when you thought the world was crashing down. He will always be there to tell you everything is going to be okay, even when they don't know if everything is going to be okay. That's his job.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a lifelong best friend.

My dad was my first best friend, and he will be my last. He's stood by me when times got tough, he carried me when I just couldn't do it anymore, and he yelled at me when I deserved it; but the one thing he has never done was give up on me. He will always be the first person I tell good news to, and the last person I ever want to disappoint. He's everything I could ever want in a best friend and more.

Dads are something out of a fairytale. They are your prince charming, your knight in shinny amour, and your fairy godfather. Dads are the reasons we are the people we are today; something that a million "thank you"' will never be enough for.

Cover Image Credit: tristen duhon

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Sports And Religion

Why are so many athletes religious?


I recently just made it on to the USC Track and Field team, and it is easily the biggest accomplishment I have ever made in my entire life. I worked so hard to physically and mentally prepare to try out for the team, let alone actually make it. I thank God for allowing me to have the chance to be a part of this team, as well as giving me that physical and mental strength required to do so, and I express this whenever someone congratulates me for making the team or even asks if I made it or not. However, I noticed that when I did this, some of the responses were a bit dismissive when I brought religion into the picture. When I said I thank God for it, I would be met with responses like "Yea well even aside from God..." or another response that drew the conversation away from my faith, away from the concept of a god.

In fact, I've noticed that many athletes are religious in some form-- more so collectively than other student bodies aside from religious groups themselves. I thought about why this may be, aside from the obvious answer such as growing up religious at home, because that does not answer the question; many people grew up in a religious household and are not religious themselves. So, I began to think personally. Why do I thank God for my athletic performance? There's a certain level of uncertainty within every sport. All athletes train their hardest to minimize this level of uncertainty, in order to maximize their chances of success. However, you can only train so hard. To me, no matter how hard you train, there's always some type of level of uncertainty to every level of performance: the chances of you getting injured, the chances of you winning your game or race, the chances of the opponent's performance, etc. This is where I think God intervenes, and perhaps other athletes would agree. There have been countless times where I ran well and had absolutely no idea how I did it. Yes, I worked hard to improve my times, but when you are in the moment of a race, or a game, that fades into the background, especially when everyone else has been working just as hard. It's just you, your race (or game), and God. That's it.

I could have not made the team. As a walk-on, there is more pressure for you to perform since the coaches did not seek you out; you sought them out. You are proving your abilities. Thus, I was nervous about my chances of actually making the team, especially considering the fact that the USC track team is arguably the best collegiate track team in the United States. I performed well during my try out and finished all the workouts, however I wasn't as fast as the other girls. In addition, I was 3 minutes late to my last day of tryouts and got chewed out by the coach for it. I was convinced that I blew my chances. And yet, somehow, I made it. I worked so hard for it, yes, but I thank God for keeping my body healthy so I could train to the best of my ability. I thank Him for allowing the coaches to have the time to try me out. I thank Him for allowing them to see my potential. I thank Him for giving me the best high school track coach possible who prepared me mentally and physically, as well as supported me throughout all the highs and all the lows. I thank Him for giving me this chance to continue my track career at the most prestigious collegiate team. My gratitude for all this, is simply infinite.

There is good reason why many athletes are religious; being an athlete requires you to be more than yourself. It requires you to dig deeper, into places that you didn't even think were possible, and really aren't without the belief of a higher power. The belief in a higher power, in whatever form or name that takes, means the belief in infinite possibility. And for an athlete to have that, means nothing can stop them from chasing their dreams.

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