BASEBALL FANS BEGINNING TO MAKE A COMEBACK?
The current issue of USA TODAY's BASEBALL WEEKLY charts MLB
attendance between '94 and '95. This year's teams with the
highest capacity: Rockies (90%), Indians (86%, +3.9% over '94),
and the Red Sox (82.5%, +3.5% over '94). Teams with the lowest
capacity: Giants (23.6%), Brewers (24.2%), and Twins (24.4%).
Driven by resurgence in Texas, Cleveland and Montreal, attendance
since May 31 has increased 13% when compared with the previous
18-day period of May 13-30 (Pat Coleman, BASEBALL WEEKLY, 6/27
issue). In USA TODAY, Rod Beaton writes, "Maybe major league
baseball is finally catching a break," noting that Raul Mondesi,
Manny Ramirez, and Hideo Nomo are all "entering stardom" (USA
TODAY, 6/23). In Dallas, Gerry Fraley reports, "The first All-
Star Game in Rangers history will be notable for the decreased
star quality of the event. Injuries have struck down many of the
sport's elite players" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 6/22).
THE SMALLER THE BETTER? MLB owners will try a smaller
negotiating committee when talks with players resume. Red
Sox CEO John Harrington will remain on the panel, and he
will be joined by Rockies Chair Jerry McMorris, and Royals
CEO David Glass. According to Harrington, talks should
resume in a "few weeks" (AP/Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 6/23).
FRANCHISE NOTE: THE SPORTING NEWS reports new Padres
Owner John Moores is "quickly" discovering why there are
predictions the franchise will be in Northern VA when its
lease runs out in '99. Moores on his disappointment with
attendance this year, "Frankly, the thought was that if we
made some changes in the team, it would help. We have been
a little optimistic in how quickly people would react" (Bob
Nightengale, THE SPORTING NEWS, 6/26 issue).