Attendance levels thus far

When the season began, the economy and its impact on MLB franchises was a hot topic. Since the economy has not gotten any better to say the least, I thought we should take a look at attendance levels the Jays have experienced in 2009 and compare them to previous years.

In 12 home games thus far in the season the Jays have averaged 20,208 fans per game (242,499 total), but that level is skewed a little due to the 48,027 fans that showed up for the opener. When we take out the opener's attendance and divide by the 11 games that remain, we get an average of 17,679 fans per game.

The lowest level of attendance per game in Jays history, at what used to be the Skydome but is now Rogers Centre, was 20,209 in 2002, compared with 2008's attendance of 29,626 fans on average. If current trends continue to gravitate towards the 17,679 level experienced post opening day, chances are we will see an average attendance that is lower by at least 10,000 to 11,000 per game when compared to 2008's attendance average. This would be an approximate 33% reduction in attendance in comparison and would surely result in wide scale changes to be made to players on the team, free agency acquisitions, and to ticket prices for 2010.

The Ontario manufacturing sector has been one of the hardest hit sectors of the Canadian economy, and with many of those workers producing the Jays fan base and attendance, it is unlikely that attendance will get to be any better in the near future. The summer months are a more popular time of year to go out and catch a game, so here's to hoping that the Jays are able to reel in fans by the thousands so that they can field a competitive team in 2010 and beyond. With these kinds of economic indicators, it may force the Jays to cut payroll and deal key players like Doc Halladay and Vernon Wells, something the majority of Jays fans do not want to see happen.

If you want to catch a game, or many games, and want to know the specials and packages the Jays are offering, here's a link to their ticket packages and offers. Of note is the "Messin' with Recession" option that offers tickets for as low as $5 in the uppers, and reasonably priced lowers at $34, to go along with $1 hot dogs (max 4 per order) and $4 souvenirs (max of 4 per fan). The future dates of the MWR offer are June 2nd, and June 23rd.

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