The power of the pennant race has grabbed back hold of the Atlanta Braves fans. According to David Oâ€™Brien of the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the Braves have drawn 154,037 more fans through 54 home games this season than last.
Through Sunday, the Braves have drawn a total home attendance of 1,671,849 fans, an average of 30,960 per game. Through the same number of games at Turner Field last season, which came on July 31, they drew a total of 1,517,812, an average of 28,108 per game. The difference is nearly 3,000 more fans per game this season.
Based on total attendance to-date, the increase from this season to last is 10 percent.
Even more impressive, the Braves hosted the Yankees and Red Sox in back-to-back series last season for interleague drawing over 40,000 over six games.
The question will be how the fans turn out for the playoffs (should the Braves make it, of course). When the Braves had their incredible run of 11 straight postseason appearances, and 14 appearances over 15 seasons 1991-2005, attendance waned in the playoffs, a sign that it became more of an expectation for fans. Since '05, the team hasn't been back to the postseason. We're betting that if they make the playoffs, attendance will be up.
Maury Brown is the Founder and President of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey, as well as a contributor to FanGraphs and Forbes SportsMoney. He is available for hire or freelance. Brown's full bio is here. He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network.
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