Harper's Presence Helps Phillies Post Strong Attendance Numbers
The Phillies this season are averaging 35,396 fans per game for Bryce Harper's first season with the club, the sixth-highest average in the league and "more than 10,000 additional fans per game at Citizens Bank Park compared to the same point last season, an increase that dwarfs every other team," according to Rob Tornoe of the PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER. Few MLB teams have been able to "increase their attendance this season," which is down about 2% overall across the league. The Phillies also remain "must-watch television for fans throughout the Delaware Valley." The Phillies are averaging a 4.6 local rating for games on NBC Sports Philadelphia and WCAU-NBC. That would put the team "on pace to draw its highest television ratings" since '12, when it averaged a 5.4 rating. The interest in watching the Phillies also "crosses over to the digital side," where games are averaging 19,000 unique streaming devices this season, an increase of 139% compared to last year (INQUIRER.com, 6/6).
OUT OF SIGHT: In Philadelphia, Jim Salisbury noted the Phillies "quietly removed all banners depicting the image" of CF Odubel Herrera in and around Citizens Bank Park. Herrera was arrested in New Jersey last month on a "charge of domestic violence." Five banners in all were "removed -- four from light poles that surround the ballpark and one from the concourse inside the stadium" (NBCSPORTSPHILADELPHIA.com, 6/6). Also in Philadelphia, Matt Breen notes after being informed of Herrera’s arrest, the Phillies asked MLB to "remove his name from the All-Star Ballot." As for whether the signage would return, Phillies VP/Communications Bonnie Clark said, "That decision will be made at an appropriate time" (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 6/7).