MLB has had to take on a challenging task since 2020.
That task is getting fans to the stadiums.
Everything was fine up to 2019, but then the pandemic took place in 2020 and games were played with no fans in the stands for obvious health-related reasons.
MLB and the Players Association spent months negotiating the conditions to play that 2020 campaign.
In 2021, the first season after the hardest part of COVID-19, still represented a huge decrease in attendance numbers in comparison with 2019.
It was natural, though: after what happened in 2020, some people didn’t want to risk their health by going to the stadium.
2021 ended, and another long, grueling period of negotiations between MLB and the MLBPA ensued, this time for the new collective bargaining agreement.
The Lockout Probably Didn’t Help, But There Was An Increase In Attendance Compared To 2021
The league did many things the wrong way, including installing a lockout in which players couldn’t even talk to their trainers or train in the team facilities.
Fans were not happy with the league, and that has probably affected 2022 attendance numbers at least a bit.
“MLB drew 64.6 million fans to stadiums this season — a 43% increase from 2021 but still below pre-pandemic levels. The Dodgers led all teams in attendance, averaging 47,672 fans per game,” Front Office Sports tweeted.
MLB drew 64.6 million fans to stadiums this season — a 43% increase from 2021 but still below pre-pandemic levels.
The Dodgers led all teams in attendance, averaging 47,672 fans per game ⚾️ pic.twitter.com/TbIHjHs7c2
— Front Office Sports (@FOS) October 6, 2022
The good news is that the situation appears to be improving steadily.
The bad news is that there is still work to be done if the league wants to return to pre-pandemic attendance levels.
Still, a 43 percent increase in comparison to 2021 is significant, and that number will probably increase in 2023 as we get further removed from elements such as pandemic and the lockout.
Baseball could be slowly regaining its health.