SBD/May 9, 2013/Franchises

Indians Will Need Multiple Years Of Playoff Contention To Rebuild Season-Ticket Base

Indians season tickets have dropped by nearly 20,000 over the last decade
The Indians rank “last in the majors” in attendance so far this season with fewer than 15,000 fans attending per game, and it likely will take "three to five years of serious contention and frequent appearances” in the postseason to significantly change the downward trend, according to Bud Shaw of the Cleveland PLAIN DEALER. The team's season-ticket base has “slipped by nearly 20,000 over the last decade,” and that cannot be "rebuilt in one winter” despite the additions of manager Terry Francona, CF Michael Bourn, 1B Mark Reynolds and RF Nick Swisher. It likely “wouldn't be a good bet over two winters.” The Indians need “consecutive playoff appearances, and perhaps another World Series appearance, at the very least to move the needle.” Comparisons between the "relatively blind allegiance awarded the Browns versus the tepid following of the Indians" are "moot now." Shaw: "This is a football town, which is not the same as saying it's a terrible baseball town" (CLEVELAND.com, 5/8).

NOTHING TO SEE HERE: NBC’s Brian Williams noted the Marlins are "so bad in light of a meager payroll and a 10-24 record, they are closing down the upper deck of their stadium, Marlins Park, at least for a few upcoming games because so few people are coming to the games and the empty seats look so bad." The Marlins are claiming the "closure will make for a better fan experience.” The team is averaging around 17,000 fans per game in the second-year stadium, and Williams said, "If you build it, be prepared to shut down the upper deck if the fans don't show up" (“Nightly News,” NBC, 5/8).
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