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SBD/Issue 36/Sports & SocietyPrint All
Baseball is a sport filled with aphorisms, and after four games of the ‘10 World Series and two months of dominance by the Giants’ pitching staff over MLB hitters, “good pitching always beats good hitting” is one that’s more indelible than ever. But it isn’t always dog bites man. Comparing fans of the Giants and Rangers, Scarborough Sports Marketing research found a number of surprises. Given their proximity to Silicon Valley, you would expect Giants fans to be more tech savvy. Yet, 31% of those identifying themselves as Rangers fans (by watching, attending or listening to a game during the past year) said they have smart phones. By comparison, 30% of Giants fans said they have smart phones. "The slight lead among Rangers fans is not as important -- the fact that it is even close at all is surprising. You would think it would be two-to-one for Giants fans," said Scarborough Sports Marketing VP/Sales Bill Nielsen, whose group gathers research data for 25 MLB teams.
MORE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN THE TWO FAN BASES: Other measures are equally surprising. Around 21% of Rangers fans said they spend 20 hours or more weekly online, compared to 15% of Giants fans. Rangers fans also have sizable leads in terms of owning satellite radios and televisions, and video-game hardware. When it comes to beverages and food, the results are also unanticipated. While more Giants fans said they ate at Chinese restaurants and coffee emporiums within the past month, 28% percent of Rangers fans said they have eaten at a seafood restaurant in the past 30 days, compared to 16% of Giants fans; 68% of Rangers fans indicated they have dined upscale in the past month, compared to 30% of Giants fans. With midterm elections tomorrow, political leanings of the fan bases are also worthy of examination. According to Scarborough, 36% of Rangers fans are Republican, and 50% are Republican or independent-leaning Republican. Of Giants fans, 44% are Democrats and 56% are Democrats or independent-leaning Democratic. What the different fan groups imbibe is also intriguing: 73% of Giants fans identified themselves as wine drinkers, compared to 58% of Rangers fans. Even more astounding: a higher percentage of Rangers fans said they drink wine (58%) than beer (56%).
METHODOLOGY: 5,780 Giants fans 18-years-old and older were identified in phone, e-mail, and Internet surveys within the S.F-Oakland-San Jose market from February '09-January '10. The 3,005 Rangers fans in the same demo were culled from the Dallas-Ft. Worth market in research conducted from March '09-February '10.