Jackson: Mooning over baseball in Miami

From SABR member Frank Jackson at The Hardball Times on August 23, 2019:

A quick examination of National League attendance figures might lead one to believe that the Bermuda Triangle has swallowed up the Miami Marlins’ fan base. As I write this, the Marlins have drawn just 617,012 fans in 2019, which breaks down to an average of 10,114 per game, roughly 27.5% of capacity (36,742). They are buried so deep in the cellar of the attendance rankings that the team just above them–the Tampa Bay Rays, playing in the oft-maligned Tropicana Field–is averaging 15,306 per game. The Marlins will likely fail to draw a million fans. These days, that is disastrous, no matter how low your payroll.

The Marlins have greatly improved their farm system, though, so maybe one day CEO Derek Jeter’s deals will bear fruit and Marlins Park will rock. If so, it won’t be the first time that baseball fans flocked to this location. In a sense, Miami baseball history began here.

Even by American standards, Miami is a young city. It was incorporated in July 1896, thanks to Henry Flagler extending his Florida East Coast Railway south from Palm Beach. The locals wanted to call the town Flagler but he demurred and persuaded them to name the new town after a local Native American tribe, the Mayaimi. Had Flagler not been so modest, baseball fans today might be rooting for the Flagler Flounders rather than the Miami Marlins.

Read the full article here: https://tht.fangraphs.com/mooning-over-baseball-in-miami/

Originally published: August 26, 2019. Last Updated: August 26, 2019.