Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Baseball - Not Even the Sox can Help the Blue Jays

I went to the Red Sox/Blue Jays game with my older son Max last night. The Sox won a ridiculous 13-12 game here the night before, and this game was the exact opposite - a very well-pitched National League style 2-1 game. Very dull, but the Sox win again - their 6th in a row by 1 run - and we've now climbed into a 3rd place tie with the Jays. Happy days.

Nothing beats a family outing to the ballpark, and these days just about anyone can do that here in Toronto. I love living here, but the city tries too hard to be NYC-North and loves to talk about how this is such a big world-class city. In many ways it is, but the state of baseball here is abysmal. Things were just OK til Roy Halladay moved on to Philly, but it's gone off the cliff. Attendance is at all-time lows, and they can't even break 15,000 for the Red Sox. That's not good.

Toronto is definitely a major league caliber sports town, but c'mon. The Jays have a lock on our sports dollar right now. There's no NBA or NHL playoff action in this town, so they have zero competition - and this is the best they can draw? Yeesh. Just try getting a ticket right now for the Sox or Celtics or Bruins. All those teams are playing and Boston is a smaller city than TO. Just doesn't add up.

Sorry for mini-rant, folks. There was a time when the Jays were a perennial sell-out, drawing a full house - 50,000+ - every game. It's sad to see such an empty and quiet - really quiet - stadium, and it's hard to see what's going to change it. Winning is always the best solution, but even with aces like Halladay or even Roger Clemens pitching, they were hard pressed to draw 25,000 fans. No doubt, fans have gotten tired of waiting and endless re-building. It's even harder to take when you see the great job Tampa Bay has done in the past few years going from worst to first with a crappy stadium, indifferent fans, a small market and a small market payroll. The Blue Jays don't have these problems, and they've been totally passed by now by the Rays. Ugh.

Anyhow, there photos tell the story pretty well. I always love going to see baseball, but this ain't much fun.


remlap42 said...

Wow...those are depressing pictures. I was fortunate enough to live in Toronto during the early 90's during their multi-world-series championship days...certainly quite a contrast.

Jon Arnold said...

Yeah, me too. Thanks for chiming in. Actually, my son - in the photo - was born the day the Jays won the first time, so we have a special connection to the team! Seems SO long ago now...