The official numbers confirm what many in baseball have been saying: attendance is down 5 percent in Cactus League games this spring despite the full-time addition of the Indians and Dodgers to the mix.
That’s a surprise: many expected the Cactus League to receive a boost from the move of Los Angeles and Cleveland from Florida and the move of the White Sox from Tucson to Phoenix.
More ominously, many team officials are whispering to us that revenues are down even more dramatically than expected; fans may be showing up for games but passing on that second beer or spring-training T-shirt.
The reports from Florida aren’t as bad: in general, the teams are where they expected to be in terms of attendance (about the same as last year on a per-game average, down in total because of the defection of the Indians and Dodgers), and as many teams were expected a decline in revenues, they were prepared for that downturn.
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