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SBD/March 29, 2013/Leagues and Governing Bodies
Cactus League Benefits From Early Start, Good Weather With New Attendance Record
Published March 29, 2013
THE TIMES, THEY ARE A CHANGING: In Phoenix, Jim Walsh notes the Cubs' last game at Hohokam Stadium closed a "chapter in Cactus League history.” the stadium will “be reborn in 2015, when the Oakland Athletics move in as tenants of a renovated ballpark.” About 2.6 million fans “passed through Hohokam’s turnstiles since the stadium was rebuilt in 1997, setting Cactus League attendance records, in 2009 and 2005, including years when virtually every game was sold out.” The average attendance was “more than 10,000 per game.” Mesa Mayor Scott Smith said that any “sadness he had about the Cubs leaving Hohokam was outweighed by his enthusiasm about the new park and the A’s returning to Mesa, where they trained in the 1970s” (ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 3/29). In Chicago, Paul Sullivan writes the Cubs “aren't sad to leave Hohokam, which never lived up” to former GM Andy MacPhail's “hype of being a catalyst for a more consistent organization.” The Cubs finished “with an attendance of 145,381 in their final season at Hohokam Stadium.” That number is “a 57,742 decrease from the spring of 2009, when they drew 203,105 fans” (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 3/29).