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"WELCOME TO THE SHOW": BUT WILL FANS ACCEPT THE INVITATION?
Published April 25, 1995
MLB returns tonight with the Marlins-Dodgers, to be carried nationally on ESPN. Capacity at Joe Robbie Stadium is 46,238, "but how many show up to welcome the major leaguers may be an issue that overshadows the game," according to Larry Whiteside in this morning's BOSTON GLOBE. Marlins Manager Rene Lachemann: "We have to go after the young fans. And with a lot more than signing autographs. The fans we lost we may never get back. So we have to go out after some new ones" (BOSTON GLOBE, 4/25). WHAT IT TAKES: In San Francisco, Tim Keown quotes an unnamed baseball exec saying that MLB won't realize its market potential "until they understand they are an industry and not 28 separate, warring city-states. ... How can Dave Stewart not be a major spokesman for the game of baseball? It's amazing how simple it is, but there's such a major rift between labor and management that it may never happen" (SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE, 4/25). TIME TO THROW OUT THE FIRST POLL: The CNN/USA TODAY/ Gallup Poll surveyed 427 baseball fans from April 17-19; margin of error +/- 5% (USA TODAY, 4/25). "Moneyline's" Lou Dobbs on the results: "Many fans have had it" (CNN, 4/24). ARE YOU A FAN OF (OF THOSE WHO ATTENDED AT LEAST ONE PROFESSIONAL BASEBALL? GAME LAST YEAR): DO YOU PLAN TO NOW FEB 26 ATTEND ANY MLB GAMES THIS YEAR? Yes 41% 49% No 59 51 Yes 61% No 34% Don't know 5% WILL YOU WATCH MORE MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL ON TELEVISION THIS SEASON, AS MUCH OR LESS? Less 48% As much 43% More 7% No opinion 2% SIGNS, SIGNS ... EVERYWHERE SIGNS: The Cardinals drew 26,033 for an exhibition game against the Mariners with the team's promotion "built around" Ken Griffey Jr. The team's season-ticket holders were admitted free with everyone else paying $2.50 (SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER, 4/25)....In Atlanta, the Braves drew less than 8,000 for a game against the Yankees. Temps were in the 40s. Paid attendance was announced at 25,309 due to the game's inclusion in season-ticket packages (ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 4/25)....An "unheard-of" 7,500 tickets remain for the Blue Jays' home opener. Thus far, the Jays do not have one sell-out for any of their first 15 games (TORONTO SUN, 4/25)....David Letterman: "In an effort to bring a lot of people out to Shea Stadium this year, earlier today the Mets held a press conference and announced that all Mets 1995 games would be played on the road" ("Late Night," CBS, 4/24).