Attendance for both the New York Yankees and New York Mets is down thus far in 2011, ffollowing a trend across Major League Baseball.
In a revealing piece entitled 'Does Major League Baseball Have an Attendance Problem?' CNBC's Darren Rovell points out that Yankee attendance is down 5.9 percent thus far, and attendance at Mets' games is off 7.8 percent.
Rovell reported that baseball has now seen three consecutive seasons of declining attendance, and that this season is down about one percent from 2010.
So, what is going on here? Rovell has several theories, and he knows a lot more about this than I do.
I believe a few things, though. First, it's too darn cold and miserable to play baseball in the Northeast in late March and early April. Sitting through those games is punishment -- really expensive punishment -- and I for one don't want to do it. Second is cost -- it just isn't easy to foot the bill for a ballgame. Third, smaller stadiums. The Yankees don't sell as many tickets because they simply don't have as many to offer. Baseball teams -- and sports teams in general -- have sold their souls to the corporate world with luxury boxes, suites, etc. That leaves less room, and less need, for the average fan.