Originally Posted by TheBigLebowski
I agree the management of the team has not been good in recent years. However, I refuse to continuously blame management/ownership for poor attendance.
The management and ownership were replaced this year. That alone should result in a spike in attendance. The fact that we are 10 games over .500 in May and in first place should also supplement attendance.
Why not blame them? It's very much their fault.
This team has gone so long without being good that a lot of what otherwise would be the hardcore fanbase has fallen off into cynicism and doubt -- that includes me. If I had an opportunity to lay every dollar and posession I own (albeit not much) on the Reds misssing the post-season this year, I'd do it 100 times over. That's the level of confidence I have in this team to continue it's pace, and I know I'm not the only one out there.
It doesn't stop me from going to the ballpark, but it certainly stops other people from going. Not everyone is up for dropping their hard-earned money down on what they believe is a loser franchise and a lost cause. The team may be "winning" but it's readily apparent to me, and others, that they're not going to stay winning with the team they have. You think any knowledgeable baseball fan is going to open the paper, look at the probables and say: "Hmmm, I think I'll go down to the game since Dave Williams/Elizardo Ramirez/Brandon Claussen is pitching?"
Further, I think the ballpark is a small factor as well. If I had to choose a word to describe watching games at the Great American Ballpark, it'd be: Generic. I can't pinpoint anything about the stadium I dislike, but I can't point to anything about it I like either. The atmosphere is so-so, the location is so-so, the actual edifice is utilitarian, and the food is mediocre (here's an area where the Reds should've done their homework on -- it's great to have local restaraunts serving food at the game, but it's better to have great food you can ONLY get at the ballpark, like the BBQ pits on Eutaw Street at Camden Yards).