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Sunday, June 22, 2014

Could New York support a third team? New York attendance v. others 1903-2013.

Average attendance per home game in New York for:
- Giants, Dodgers, Yankees 1903-1957
- Yankees 1958-1961
- Yankees and Mets 1962-2013

Average attendance per home game for all other teams:

Seasons when NY averaged less than the other teams (NOT NY): 1905, 1910, 1946, 1958, 1979, 1983, 1984, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998.  1958 the first year when the Yankees had New York to itself was impacted by the high attendance the Dodgers had in Los Angeles.  NY v. (NOT NY):

New York 3 team attendance 1920-1957 ... and comparison to California.  Friday, June 20, 2014

For the 1920 season the AL team, by then known as the Yankees, acquired home run record setter Babe Ruth from the Boston Red Sox and immediately drew more fans than the Giants ... In 1920 despite winning the NL pennant the Dodgers were third in NY attendance with 808,722.  The Yankees became the first team anywhere to draw over one million: 1,289,422...

The Giants were last in NL attendance in 1956 and 1957, despite having won the World Series in 1954.  Even Willie Mays couldn't save them.  The Dodgers were still drawing a million but both teams needed a boost such as a new ball park.

1920-1957: Yankees led in NY attendance every year except:

Giants: 1925, 1935
Dodgers: 1939,  1941, 1942,  1943, 1945.

Even in those seasons the Yankees were number two in New York attendance.  So in the 38 seasons from 1920 through 1957 the Yankees were number one 31 times.  Since 1999 the average per game attendance of the Yankees and Mets has exceeded that of the other teams every year.


However, the difference does not suggest that New York could support a third team.  Dividing the peak of 50,000 in 2008 would yield about 33,000 for each of three teams.  But by 2013 that number had shrunk to about 36,000, closer to 23,000 per team and much less than the average for the other teams.  Plus, historically one New York team tends to draw considerably below the others.  After World War II from 1946 through 1957 the Yankees dominated with the Dodgers a solid second and the Giants in second only twice: 1948 and 1954.  The Giants won the World Series in 1954, the Dodgers in 1955.  Both left after 1957.

Obviously, this is a very simple view based exclusively on attendance.

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