Monday, June 23, 2014

A Different Perspective on Attendance in Sarpy County for Minor League Baseball

I've developed a reputation as the local curmudgeon when it comes to Sarpy County's ballpark.  I've felt it was unnecessary expense for the local area to build two ballparks when one would suffice.  On Friday, people thought it would be fun to razz me over Tom Shatel's column in the Omaha World-Herald, where he points out the booming crowds showing up at the Trailer Park for minor league baseball while the College World Series was underway in Omaha.
A baseball carnival not named the College World Series was open for business Wednesday outside Papillion. More than 7,000 baseball fans came out to watch a game, drink a beer, hear the crack of a wooden bat and maybe see a home run or two.

Well, they got me. Clearly I was wrong.  With only 6,434 seats out in the Trailer Park, a crowd like that would have the grandstand jammed with a huge crowd out on the berms.

Wait, did they say Wednesday?  Funny thing, my daughter was there with her summer program that day...along with several hundred other kids from the Millard and Elkhorn schools' summer programs.  And they were nice enough to share some pictures with the parents on Facebook.

Hmmm... maybe everybody's out in left field during the third inning?

Maybe on the berms?

Maybe it's just an illusion...or everybody just happened to be in the bathroom at that moment?

Shatel obviously used the official attendance for the game, which was 7,524. I have no reason to doubt that paid attendance number.  Why?

Because they were giving tickets away.

It's great that the Sarpy County Storm Chasers gave away so many tickets to kids. But let's not pretend that there it was standing room only in the 6,434 seat ballpark, because it's clear that most of the seats were unoccupied all afternoon Wednesday.

Unfortunately, that misperception carried through to Ballpark Digest, who duly reported on it.  Maybe at some point down the line, I'll be proven wrong about the Boondoggle in Sarpy County...but the longer this goes on (and the attempts to prove otherwise continue to be feeble), the chances of that become less and less.

1 comment:

jkbaldwin said...

Ha. That's funny right there, I don't care who ya are.