Sports Illustrated: How Phillies, Rays have evolved six years after World Series showdown

Sports Illustrated: How Phillies, Rays have evolved six years after World Series showdown

Last week, Emory Sports Marketing Analytics released the results of a study it conducted that sought to measure, in its words (italics theirs), “a measure of how demanding fans are of their teams. In other words, we are looking at the tolerances fan bases have for losing (or maybe we could view this as insight into which cities are the most prone to bandwagon behavior).” The most demanding fans? The Phillies’. In the late 90s and early 2000s, when the team was struggling and still playing in Veterans Stadium, the club annually ranked among the league’s bottom few clubs in attendance. By 2008, their championship year, the Phillies were fifth overall, and they led the league as recently as 2012. Even with the team’s struggles this season, it still ranks 10th, as fans are still drawn to Citizens Bank Bark by their recent positive memories, and to see the longtime stalwarts who contributed to them. If any club has an incentive to hold onto its stars as long as possible, and to profit off the gate receipts those stars still produce, it is Philadelphia.