The Phillies, a team that just a few years ago was the pride of the city, are a total afterthought. They are currently on pace to win 60 games, but if you calculate their pythagorean win percentage (the team’s winning percentage given their runs scored and runs allowed), they are set to finish around 48-114. Understandably, that’s keeping fans away.
Through 12 home games this year, the Phils have drawn 305,434 fans. That’s an average of 25,453 per game (down 4,152 from last year and 19,988 from the CBP high in 2011). And if you remove the home opener from the equation — and the 45,549 fans who showed up — this season’s average drops to 23,626. That trend would bring the Phillies to their lowest attendance total since 2002’s 1,618,467 fans at an average of 20,231 per game average.
The Phillies are still far from the league’s bottom. The Cleveland Indians draw 15,821 per game, only filling 36.4% of their park, while the Phils at least fill 58% of CBP (54% if you remove the opener). That’s still better than nine teams. But if the year’s attendance keeps up with the current trend and drops more and more, it could fail to top 2,000,000 for the season. While it may seem likely that the Phils will have more sparsely attended games than near-sellouts with this team, attendance will pick up when it gets warmer and fans look past the team on the field and just look forward to a nice day at the ballpark. Still, even if attendance drops dramatically, it won’t be as bad as the team’s record, which could be their worst since
1981 1972 (cutting out strike shortened years).
For now, the days of a consistently-filled ballpark are long gone. Now is the era of more leg room, quicker trips to the bathroom, more audible heckles, and (slightly) shorter lines for crab fries. Two positives, however: You’ll start to see better and better deals on tickets, and you’ll be more visible in your new shirt.