Eb and Flo
I wonder if the 4 IF 3 OF formation is really the best. What about 3 layers of defenders or 5 infielders?
My original thought was that since strikeouts are on the rise, defensive chances decline. Relievers tend to have higher strikeout rates and lower ground ball rates. That quick thought doesn't do the work justice. I am not sure that strikeouts completely explain the shift.
Worthy of more thought. Too bad we don't have pitch fx data to compare eras.
You have to also look at the season ticket base, and what happens to the tickets those people don't want. This year, it has taken a while, but people are buying their single game tickets now on stubhub, not the 5,000+ the Twins still have available for every game.
My wife and I are also reconsidering our season ticket desire. This was a tough year as jobs made us miss more games in our packet than the norm. We managed to not lose ANY money yet on our ticket resales, which is a plus, actually turning a profit on a couple.
Next year, don't see that happening at all. Next year, we see the opportunity to, eprhaps, buy tickets for a game for as little as $5, or a buck. Who knows.
The incentive today is the CHANCE to buy A TICKET for the All-Star game. But the strip could cost as much as your season ticket package.
This year they are offering a 10% discount on concessions and such. Already get the free magazine and yearbook. I get free pop being a designated driver. I will save a half-buck on my hot-dog.
It will be interesting to see how the season ticket base turns out. Like myself, weighing the games assigned for me to go to versus just being able to wak up and buy a ticket (or purchase easily on stubhub -- amazing place, folks......).
This month, go to a weeknite game with 30,000 in attendance and roughly count the empty seats.
Minnesota = State
Twin Cities = Town, more or less
I actually do remember the difference from when I lived there.
As with election years ("all politics is local"), each team-attendance situation is likely keyed to on-field performance for some given years, and each market will react differently to the perceived success of the team. I'd be afraid to use too much statistical inference in the case of so relatively few datapoints, and be more inclined to eyeball it.
If a team in a new park keeps its winning percentage up, it seems as if the honeymoon can go on and on, i.e. higher attendance levels than in previous periods of team success in the old park. The Giants have been in their new park since 2000 and the honeymoon is still going strong; attendance dipped modestly during a period of poor on-field results but never to a level of the old park, and has since bounced back.
By contrast, if the team on the field stinks, the honeymoon can be short. The White Sox lost their attendance mojo very quickly after the winning stopped, and attendance was back down to something like where it was in the old park after just 4 years.
The decline in the Twins attendance in 2012 looks like on a similar trajectory to the Sox. Another losing season in '13 may have per-game numbers under 30K like before the move.
It could be something to do with what a market is receptive to; I have the sense that going to a Giants game (ditto Fenway, Wrigley) is more like an "event" while in a lot of other cases a team has to market competitiveness on the field, which in a zero-sum game has to run out of luck for some teams each year. But Minnesota is kind of a front-runner's town and there's probably not much the front office can do to market it differently.