Attendance Still Matters in MLB: The Relationship with Winning Percentage

Authors: Mitchell T. Woltring, University of South Alabama

Corresponding Author:
Mitchell T. Woltring, Ph.D.
171 Jaguar Drive
HKS 1016
mitchellwoltring@southalabama.edu
251-461-1925

Dr. Mitchell Woltring is an assistant professor of Sport Management at the University of South Alabama. He teaches undergraduate classes in the Leisure Studies program which serves both sport management and therapeutic recreation students. He received his Ph.D. in Human Performance from Middle Tennessee State University, an M.S. in Sport Management from Middle Tennessee State University, and a B.S. in Sport Management from Minnesota State University, Mankato. He has worked in the sport industry with several baseball teams at the MLB, college, and amateur levels, as well as coaching at the high school level.

Attendance Still Matters in MLB: The Relationship with Winning Percentage

ABSTRACT
The relationship between average attendance and winning percentage for Major League Baseball (MLB) teams across a 16-year period, from 1998-2013 was investigated. Attendance in baseball is an important topic because with a schedule at least twice as long as any other major North American league, MLB has the potential to gain a competitive advantage by maximizing attendance.

The relationship between attendance and winning percentage has been researched by looking at how winning percentage affects future attendance (3, 7). However, there is also evidence of a bidirectional relationship between attendance and winning percentage which suggests that attendance could be acting on winning percentage (3, 6). The excitement caused by a capacity crowd has the potential to influence the home team to perform better, which is exhibited by Baade and Tiehen’s postulation that attendance of at least 75% of stadium capacity can, “generate a different sense of excitement” (1).

An innovative method to examine attendance was used; rather than relying on aggregate attendance numbers, average attendance was recorded as a proportion of total stadium capacity. MLB stadiums range in capacity from 34,078 to 56,000, so aggregate numbers do not accurately reflect the potential differences in attendance between teams.

Four different statistical analyses were run which controlled for year, stadium capacity, and team payroll to determine the relationship between average attendance measured as a proportion of stadium capacity and winning percentage. Analyses of crosstabs, ANOVA, regression, and logistic regression all found a significant relationship between average attendance as a proportion of stadium capacity and winning percentage. Based on the research question, regression analysis proved to be the most applicable of the results. Regression results showed that average attendance as a proportion of stadium capacity was positively related to winning percentage, R2 = .242, p <.001.

The results indicate that attendance has the potential to increase winning percentage, which should be of interest to any MLB team. It should especially be of interest considering that over the course of the present study, MLB stadiums were only filled to 67% capacity.

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2018-11-06T10:01:57+00:00November 22nd, 2018|Research, Sports Management|Comments Off on Attendance Still Matters in MLB: The Relationship with Winning Percentage

Examining Perceptions of Baseball’s Eras: A Statistical Comparison

Authors: Mitchell T. Woltring, Jim K. Rost, Colby B. Jubenville

Corresponding Author:
Mitchell T. Woltring, Ph.D.
171 Jaguar Drive
HKS 1016
mitchellwoltring@gmail.com
251-461-1925

Dr. Mitchell Woltring is an assistant professor of Sport Management at the University of South Alabama. He teaches undergraduate classes in the Leisure Studies program which serves both sport management and therapeutic recreation students. He received his Ph.D. in Human Performance from Middle Tennessee State University, an M.S. in Sport Management from Middle Tennessee State University, and a B.S. in Sport Management from Minnesota State University, Mankato. He has worked in the sport industry with several baseball teams at the MLB, college, and amateur levels, as well as coaching at the high school level.

Examining Perceptions of Baseball’s Eras: A Statistical Comparison

ABSTRACT
Professional baseball has endured many changes in rules, equipment, and competitive strategy over the course of its history. Because of such shifts, the modern era of Major League Baseball has been segmented into distinct eras. The purpose of this research was to determine how the perceptions of each era compared with the statistical outputs based on the measure of On-Base Plus Slugging Percentage (OPS), beginning with the 1901 season. Results were segmented by each era to determine any significant differences between the eras. Multiple regression and ANOVA were used to determine if perceptions for each era aligned with statistical findings. Results showed that perceptions for five of the seven eras matched, while perceptions of two eras did not. Results also showed significant statistical differences between the eras, indicating the way in which hitting and pitching contributed to winning percentage were unique for each era.
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2018-10-25T08:15:22+00:00October 25th, 2018|Sports Studies and Sports Psychology|Comments Off on Examining Perceptions of Baseball’s Eras: A Statistical Comparison

How Major League Baseball Teams Are Demonstrating Corporate Social Responsibility on Instagram

Authors: Kevin Hull & Joon Kyoung Kim

Corresponding Author:
Kevin Hull, Ph.D.
University of South Carolina
800 Sumter Street
Columbia, SC 29208
khull@sc.edu
803-777-4746

Kevin Hull (Ph.D., University of Florida) is an assistant professor of journalism at the University of South Carolina. Joon Kyoung Kim (M.A., Syracuse University) is a doctoral student in the School of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of South Carolina.

How Major League Baseball Teams Are Demonstrating Corporate Social Responsibility on Instagram

ABSTRACT
For decades, professional sports teams have worked with local and national charitable groups. These efforts are frequently reported on by the media, but teams now have a chance to showcase their charity work themselves. Through Instagram, teams can post photos and videos about their charity directly to their timeline. This exploratory research study examined how Major League Baseball teams were using Instagram to demonstrate their charitable efforts. A content analysis of 50 posts from every team (N = 1,500) was conducted, with the post content, hashtags used, and fan response analyzed. Findings demonstrated that teams were posting few photos and videos that showcase their charitable work. Additional examination revealed that fans were less apt to like and comment on charitable posts when compared to other types of posts. Implications regarding how professional sports teams should be using Instagram to showcase their charity work are discussed.

Keywords: charity, corporate social responsibility, Instagram, Major League Baseball

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2016-09-27T15:30:59+00:00September 22nd, 2016|Sports Management|Comments Off on How Major League Baseball Teams Are Demonstrating Corporate Social Responsibility on Instagram