Wednesday, June 1, 2011

MLBoycott? Not so much

Today on the wire, there's a lovely bit about how most of the MLB-wide attendance problem is the fault of the Dodgers, and that it's all intentional on the part of El Lay Fan, who is none too pleased at the idea of rooting for the latest incarnation of the Expos. (H/t to the Five Tool Ninja for the link, by the way.)

Sure, perhaps it was all Giant Fan Near Homicide related, or the hangover from ManRam being gone, or how going to games where Jonathan Broxton could close might be bad for your overall health. But mostly, it's about how Dodger Fan just really doesn't want to give either Frank McCourt or Bud Selig his money, and man alive, can I not blame him for that decision.

Rather, there's this. Dodger Fan, what took you so long to see that this turd was, in fact, a turd? This team has been slowly being run into the ground for years now, ever since the stat boys who actually drafted well got ran off, and the Rent An Uneasy Feeling of the End Days of Manny Ramirez and Joe Torre were selling so many wigs. It's not as if the seeds for sorrow weren't being sowed for a while here, Blue Boys and Girls. You don't lie down with Manny and Joe without getting a little dirty. OK, more than a little.

But frankly, I'm kind of amazed that the game isn't in more trouble at the gate. Minny went from a division winning darling to a cursed franchise in nearly the time it took them to make the Eric Chavez-esque commitment to Joe Mauer. No one in KC, Cleveland or Pittsburgh is ready to believe that these teams are for real and worth paying actual money to see; similarly, every Mets Fan I've talked to this year sounded like he spent his weekends at home improvement stores, testing out which new oven would be best to stick his head into. The plus markets with well-served fan bases (Philly, NYY, Boston, SF, Chi) were already selling at near-capacity; it's not as if they could keep up the overall numbers with stasis.

And yet, there it is, numbers not lying and all that. Despite an economy that sputters along, a housing market that makes everyone with equity swallow antacids like candy, an unemployment figure that creates serious unease and widespread weather disasters, the game still draws nearly the same as it always has. With a new generation of people that clutch their smartphones like prayer beads, with techonology at home that makes going to the games less and less defensible, the enterprise is sound, so long as you don't screw the pooch by bringing your spouse into your festival of bad management.

Maybe it's just the comparatively sane labor situation?


Dave Shimp said...

Why you gotta dis Joe Torre?

DMtShooter said...

I blame him, indirectly, for the Jeter Jeremy Freaking Giambi play.

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