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Take Me Out to the Ballgame – Week 1

Posted on by Peter C

soccer balls Take Me Out to the Ballgame   Week 1

The Week 1 numbers look like this…

  5 year comparison
  Week 1 8 GP YTD
  Avg +/- GP Avg +/- Avg +/- GP
 2006   22,292     6   22,684     22,292     6 
 2007   16,109   -27.73%   6   17,051   -24.83%   16,109   -27.73%   6 
 2008   15,312   -4.95%   6   16,803   -1.46%   15,312   -4.95%   6 
 2009   17,095   11.65%   7   16,794   -0.05%   17,095   11.65%   7 
 2010   17,921   4.83%   8   17,921   6.71%   17,921   4.83%   8 
YTD – 8 Games
  Average Median %<10K %>20k
 2006    22,684     21,884    0.00%   62.50% 
 2007    17,051     16,281    0.00%   12.50% 
 2008    16,803     16,547    0.00%   25.00% 
 2009    16,794     15,979    0.00%   12.50% 
 2010    17,921     16,095    12.50%   37.50% 

Here are the attendance comparisons to 2009:

MLS Attendance – Equal # of Home Games
  2009 2010  
  Att Cap Att Att +/- GP Cap Cap
 Seattle  32,523   100.38%   36,241   11.43%   1   102.09%   35,500 
 N.Y./N.J. Red Bulls  12,462   49.47%   24,572   97.18%   1   97.55%   25,189 
 LA Galaxy  18,013   66.71%   21,376   18.67%   1   79.17%   27,000 
 ChivasUSA  16,453   60.94%   18,653   13.37%   1   69.09%   27,000 
 Columbus Crew  14,686   73.43%   13,536   -7.83%   1   67.68%   20,000 
 San Jose  10,335   12.23%   10,589   2.46%   1   102.81%   10,300 
 KC Wizards  10,385   100.00%   10,385   0.00%   1   100.00%   10,385 
 FC Dallas  15,905   75.05%   8,016   -49.60%   1   37.82%   21,193 
 Chicago  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  20,000 
 Colorado Rapids  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  18,086 
 D.C. United  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  22,500 
 Houston  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  22,500 
 NE Revolution  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  22,500 
 Philadelphia  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  18,500 
 Real Salt Lake  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  19,340 
 Toronto  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  NA  21,978 


The season opened with Seattle more than filling the house with over 36,000 fans on a rainy night. ChivasUSA had a good crowd of over 18,000 but dropped it’s opener to the Rapids. Columbus played in front of it’s lowest ever home opener attendance. Looks like another long year in Dallas, drawing just over 8,000 against its in state rival Houston. Red Bull Arena had over 24,000 show up for it’s inaugural MLS match, at least that’s what was reported. Looked like a good crowd, but there were swaths of empty seats visible during the broadcast. Kansas City filled Community America Ballpark on a very rainy night and were well rewarded as the Wizards trounced DC United. San Jose also filled its bandbox, but who knows how long that will continue if their play doesn’t improve. And finally, LA surprised me and drew more than their ’09 opener. I going to be positive and take that as a good sign.

Did you notice that the only two teams to show a drop in their home openers are both owned by the Hunts? I know that MLS fans owe a debt of gratitude to them for their perseverance during the early years of the league, but this speaks to the here and now, and something is amiss.

MLS weathered the 2009 economy fairly well. Average attendance was down only 2.57% from to 2008. In comparison, the 2009 Major League Baseball season saw a 6.67% drop in average attendance. In absolute numbers, given the extra team(Seattle) and the 15 extra games, attendance was up 151,278. I’m one of many that thinks that 2010 is going to be a strong year for MLS and if opening weekend is any indication, the league is well on its way.

I feeling pretty smart today. 3 of the 5 players on my own ‘watch list’(bottom of post) scored on opening day. Figure I’ve got a week before I get a dose of reality.


  • FC Dallas did not lose at home in its last 8(7 wins). They opened ’10 with a draw.
  • RBNY finished winless on the road(27 total).
  • TFC did not lose at home in 7 straight.
  • TFC did not win on the road in 8 straight. Make that 9 straight with their 2010 opener loss to Columbus.
  • Colorado did not win on the road in 9 straight to close out ’09. A win on the road to start 2010.
  • RSL was unbeaten in their last 10 home games. Make that 11 with their decisive win over San Jose.

MLS Throw Ins

  • No team won 50% of its games in 2009.
  • Not surprisingly, Seattle set an MLS single season attendance record.
  • In 15 more games, 22 fewer goals were scored than in 2008(2.53 per game vs 2.81).
  • The Kansas City, Houston and San Jose prospective stadiums is a story to watch this off season. KC and Houston are on their way.
  • Through eight games: fewer goals but only 1 draw vs 3 in ’09.

    MLS In CONCACAF Champions League

    Another poor showing by MLS in the CCL. Houston was the biggest disappointment. Needing a victory in its final group play match, they travelled to Metapan(SLV), which had been winless with a -17 goal differential only to lose and be eliminated. DC United put up a good showing on the road at Toluca(MEX), earning a draw, albeit against a ‘B’ team, but were also eliminated. They just couldn’t recover from their poor start. Columbus barely got into the knockout phase as Saprissa(CRC) lost at home to Cruz Azul(MEX) while the Crew were tied by Puerto Rico who failed to win any of its 6 group play matches.

    Howard Hamilton of the HexagonalBlog has updated his CONCACAF coefficients which reflect Mexican club dominance in the region.

    The quarterfinal home and home matches were played on March 9 and 16. Columbus were strong, but not strong enough to get past 2009 Apertura winner Toluca. MLS will be represented by Columbus(Supporters’ Shield winner), Seattle(Lamar Hunt US Open Cup winner), RSL(MLS Cup winner) and Los Angeles(MLS Cup runner-up in the 2010-11 tourney. Columbus and RSL qualify directly for the group phase, while LA and Seattle will have preliminary matches.