Many teams found the long Fourth of July weekend to be a welcome tonic on the attendance front. Here's a look at some of the teams setting attendance records of one sort or another, as the Kane County Cougars set a Midwest League record and two Pacific Coast League teams and two Florida State League set team records.
Many teams found the long Fourth of July weekend to be a welcome tonic on the attendance front. Here's a look at some of the teams setting attendance records of one sort or another.
The Kane County Cougars (Low Class A; Midwest League) set a new single-game Elfstrom Stadium record and single-game Midwest League ballpark record, as a crowd of 14,872 fans was on hand to see the Peoria Chiefs in town. Peoria's lineup featured two Chicago Cubs on rehab assignments — third baseman Aramis Ramirez (1-for-2, double) and outfielder Reed Johnson (1-2, HBP). The previous Elfstrom Stadium record was 14,492, set in August 2007, and it also featured the Chiefs as the Cougars' opponent.
It's been an excellent year for the Albuquerque Isotopes (Class AAA; Pacific Coast League), who set a new top attendance mark as a crowd of 15,358 enjoyed a pre-Fourth of July contest between the ‘Topes and Memphis Redbirds Friday night.
The mark surpasses the June 23 turnout of 15,321 during the ‘Topes last homestand.
Albuquerque has drawn crowds of 10,000 or more in eight of its last nine home games and ranks third in the Pacific Coast League with an average of 8,370 entering Friday’s game. Through 39 games so far this season, the Isotopes have drawn 333,422 fans, well ahead of last year’s record attendance pace of 296,323 at the same point in the season.
With a capacity crowd of 8,768 fans packing into Security Service Field Friday night for a game between the Colorado Springs Sky Sox and the Salt Lake Bees (both Class AAA; Pacific Coast League), the Sky Sox franchise set two all-time attendance records. The sellout crowd was the seventh largest crowd in Sky Sox history and helped set the seven-game home stand record and three-game series record for highest total attendance.
In the home stand starting on June 27 and ending with the July 3 game, the Sky Sox played seven games and had a record total of 41,545 fans attend the festivities. By averaging 5,935 fans per contest, the Sox blew away the previous record for a seven-game home stand of 31,611 set from July 4th-10th, 2005.
In addition, the three-game series with Salt Lake drew a total of 21,951 fans, which shattered the record for a three-game series. The previous record of 18,500 was set from July 4-6, 2008 in a three-game set with Las Vegas.
The Clearwater Threshers (High Class A; Florida State League) set a single-game attendance record of 9,844 Friday night at Bright House Field against local rival Dunedin. The evening’s festivities included paratroopers from MacDill’s SOCOM division, delivering the first pitch. Fans were then treated to a post-game show titled “A Tribute to America” featuring fireworks and a video show.
The crowd surpassed the previous record of 9,090 set on July 3, 2008.
Celebrating their 25th season as a Phillies Minor League team in Clearwater, it was only appropriate that the new record attendance happen this season. "Clearwater and its surrounding community have really embraced the team since moving into Bright House Field in 2004. Each year we have seen record growth in attendance and it really is a credit to our great staff and wonderful fans," said Threshers GM John Timberlake.
Through 31 games this season, Clearwater has notched an attendance of 94,475 and an average of 3,048.
A spring training record of 10,335 was set on Saturday, March 15, 2009 versus the St. Louis Cardinals.
"I believe the community recognizes not only the value and quality of Minor League Baseball in these economic times, but we have proven that Bright House Field is a great place for the entire family to have fun," Timberlake added.
The Charlotte Stone Crabs (High Class A; Florida State League) set a new attendance record for Minor League Baseball in Charlotte County with 7,340 fans in attendance for their game against the Fort Myers Miracle on July 4, at Charlotte Sports Park.
The previous single-game Minor League record was 7,116, which the Stone Crabs set earlier this year on their Inaugural Season Opening Day on April 9. The team also saw their total attendance for 2009 surpass the 100,000 mark during the game as they now sit at 107,315 for the year.
The capacity crowd fell just short of the all-time Charlotte Sports Park record of 7,621, which was set by the Tampa Bay Rays on March 22, when they faced the New York Yankees during Spring Training earlier this year.
The Altoona Curve (Class AA; Eastern League) drew a standing-room-only crowd of 8,151 for their July 4 game against the Bowie Baysox, their largest crowd of the season.