Tampa Bay Rays May 2015 Attendance Review

Welcome to our second monthly review of the Tampa Rays 2015 attendance. This post will look at attendance in games played from May 7, 2015 to May 27, 2015.

  • Total May 2015 Tampa Bay Rays home attendance: 185,033
  • May 2015 Home Games: 15
  • Average attendance per game: 12,335
  • Highest attendance: 20,943 on May 9th
  • Lowest attendance: 8,701 on May 7th
  • Average May game time (9 inning games only): 2 hours, 50 minutes
  • Highest attended series: 55,869 vs Rangers, May 7-10
  • Lowest attended series: 30,394 vs Mariners, May 25-27
  • Competing events:
    • Tampa Bay Lightning home games: May 7, 12, 22, 26
    • Tampa Bay Storm home game: May 23
  • Total Tampa Bay Minor League Baseball May attendance: 96,646
  • Tampa Bay Minor League attendance per game: 1,895 (51 games)

Since 2007, average May attendance has been 10% below the annual average (18,174 vs 20,145). By average, May is the Rays worst drawing month.

Comparing May 2015 with previous years

The following chart compares May 2015 average attendance to average May attendance in recent years.

May 2015 total

May 2015 per game average attendance was 29% worse (5,039 fans per game) than the May 2014 per game average. May 2015 was the worst May per game average since 2005 (11,469 per game).

Weekdays vs Weekends

Let’s now look at the Rays May attendance on weekdays (Mon-Thurs) and weekends (Fri-Sun). As I have pointed out before, the Rays usually have one of the biggest differences in Major League Baseball in regards to weekday versus weekend attendance.

This chart shows the Rays average weekday attendance in May since 2007.

May 2015 weekday

After a spike in 2010, Rays weekday attendance in May has decreased every year. Weekday attendance in May 2015 was the lowest it has been since 2007.

(May 2010 featured only six Rays home weekday games and three were against the Boston Red Sox when the Red Sox were a considerable draw.)

Despite the decrease, Rays May weekday attendance since 2010 is almost identical to Rays April weekday attendance since 2010, which as we saw in the April attendance review, has been very consistent.

  • 2010-2015 Rays May Weekday avg attendance: 14,084
  • 2010-2015 Rays April Weekday avg attendance: 14,037
    • (Does not include Opening Day.)

The following chart shows Rays average weekend attendance in May since 2007.

May 2015 weekend

Rays 2015 average weekend attendance is considerably lower than their average weekend attendance since 2008. The 2015 average weekend attendance is the worst since 2006, when the team averaged 13,856 on weekends in May.

Prior to the 2015 decrease, Rays average May weekend attendance since 2008 was 23,403.

A predominant theory I have discussed here is the effect of the Tampa Bay Lightning games on Rays attendance. However, when we compare May 2015 to May 2011 – the last time the Lightning made a considerable run in the NHL Playoffs – we see the Rays did not suffer the same effect four years ago.

Rays May 2011 weekend attendance (average: 21,728):

Rays May weekend 2011

Rays May 2015 weekend attendance (average: 15,066):

Rays May weekend 2015

Similar amount of games, similar promotions, similar opponents, similar outside effects, yet far less fans in the seats. Perhaps there are immeasurable intangibles at play, such as frustration with the politics of the stadium situation, etc.

Conclusion:

As to be expected, the Tampa Bay Rays May attendance was low. How low it went was unexpected. Attendance in June should be greater than May attendance.

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