10/04/2010 2:26 PM ET
MLB passes 73 million, sixth highest all-time; five of eight playoff teams new from last season
Major League Baseball announced today that the 30 clubs drew 73,061,781 fans during the 2010 regular season, the sixth highest attendance total in history. It marks seven consecutive seasons that Clubs eclipsed the 73 million mark, which are the seven best attended seasons in baseball history.
The two previous World Series Champions, the New York Yankees with 3,765,803 and Philadelphia Phillies with 3,647,249, led their respective leagues in total attendance and were amongst the nine clubs (Dodgers, Cardinals, Angels, Twins, Cubs, Red Sox and Giants) that drew more than three million fans and the ten clubs that averaged more than 35,000 fans per game (the above clubs plus the Colorado Rockies).
Major League Baseball attendance for the regular season was off just four-tenths of one percent (.4%) from the 2009 total of 73,367,659.
"On behalf of Major League Baseball, I am grateful to the fans and proud of the game," said Baseball Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig. "Despite the most challenging economic times since the Great Depression, fans once again attended baseball games in extraordinary numbers. I applaud the efforts of the 30 Clubs for being responsive to these challenging times with family affordable promotions and initiatives. With five new teams in the playoffs this year, competitive balance within the sport remains strong and I am looking forward to a magnificent postseason."
Attendance highlights among the Clubs included:
- The New York Yankees finished the 2010 home regular season with a total attendance of 3,765,803, averaging 46,491 per game. Their overall home attendance and per game average attendance both led the Majors. They surpassed their home attendance figures for the 2009 regular season (3,719,358 total / 45,918 per game).
- For the fifth straight season, the Philadelphia Phillies set franchise records in home total attendance and average attendance. Through their 81 dates at Citizens Bank Park this season, the Phillies totaled 3,647,249 for an average attendance of 45,028. For the first time in franchise history, the Phillies sold out all 81 of their home games and finished the regular season with 123 consecutive sold out crowds at Citizens Bank park (since July 7, 2009).
- The Minnesota Twins eclipsed three million fans for the second time in franchise history and set a new all-time franchise record with a 2010 home attendance of 3,223,640. The previous record of 3,030,672 was set in 1988, the year following the Twins first-ever World Series Championship. During the inaugural season at Target Field, the Twins sold out a franchise-record 79 games (including 78 consecutive). They also drew crowds of 40,000 or more in 22 consecutive games from July 3rd - August 31st, eclipsing the previous mark of seven consecutive games of 40,000 or more fans set from August 10-20, 1988.
- The Texas Rangers finished the 2010 regular season with an average home attendance of 30,928, an increase of 3,287 fans per game over the final average in 2009, and this season marked the franchise's highest average attendance since 2005.
- The Milwaukee Brewers' final home attendance of 2,776,531 was the fifth-highest in team history. Four of those top five years have taken place in each of the last four seasons (the other was 2001, when Miller Park opened).
- The St. Louis Cardinals eclipsed three million in home attendance on September 19th against San Diego for the seventh consecutive season and the fifth consecutive season at Busch Stadium III. The Cardinals have surpassed the three million mark 14 times overall and were the fourth team in Major League Baseball this season to eclipse the three million mark behind the New York Yankees, Philadelphia Phillies and Los Angeles Dodgers. The final season attendance of 3,301,218, which included 27 sellouts, was the seventh-highest in franchise history.
- The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim surpassed three million fans for the eighth consecutive season to extend the current club record. The Yankees are the only other A.L. team that has accomplished that feat. The Halos' 2010 average home attendance of 40,133 ranked second in the A.L. to New York (46,491). The Angels' final home attendance of 3,250,754 was up 10,368 fans from 2009.
- The Chicago Cubs, who reached three million fans at Wrigley Field for the seventh season in a row, are one of only five Major League franchises to surpass the mark every year since 2004. The Cubs are the only Chicago professional sports team to ever reach three million in attendance and are one of only five teams in Major League Baseball to have reached three million fans in each of the last seven seasons, joining the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, St. Louis Cardinals, Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Yankees.
- The Boston Red Sox extended their record streak of consecutive sellouts at Fenway Park to 631 games, dating back to May 15, 2003. The Red Sox topped the three million mark for the third consecutive year.
- The San Francisco Giants eclipsed the three million mark for the ninth time in the last 11 years with 3,037,443 fans.
- The Pittsburgh Pirates saw a 2.25% increase in attendance from 2009 and had seven sellouts at PNC Park, the most since having nine in 2008.
- The Atlanta Braves set an Atlanta-era (since 1966) record for regular season attendance with 54,296 fans on October 2nd vs. Philadelphia on Bobby Cox Day. The Braves also set a three-game series total attendance record for the Atlanta era with 158,048 from October 1st-3rd.
- The New York Mets set a single-game Citi Field attendance record with 41,422 fans on June 23rd against the New York Yankees.
The 2010 season marked another strong year for competitive balance:
- Only three Clubs - the Phillies, the Twins and the Yankees - are making at least a second consecutive appearance in the postseason. In the Wild Card era (since 1995), only one year has produced fewer "repeat" postseason Clubs - in 2007, when only one Club made a consecutive appearance. (There were also three such Clubs in 2000 and 2006.)
- The 2010 regular season marks only the fourth time in the Wild Card era that the Club with the best record in Major League Baseball did not have a winning percentage of .600 or greater.
- The Cincinnati Reds are making their first postseason appearance since 1995.
- The Rangers are making their first postseason appearance since 1999.
- The Giants are making their first postseason appearance since 2003.
- The Atlanta Braves are making their first postseason appearance since 2005.
- The Tampa Bay Rays, who finished with the American League's best record at 96-66, qualified for the postseason for the second time in three years.