The downside of hustle: Luke Scott injured on home run trot

5 Comments

Luke Scott may be headed to the disabled list after injuring his hamstring last night during his home run trot. Scott took Cedrick Bowers deep to left-center field in the seventh inning, but ran hard out of the box before knowing it was gone and pulled up lame after rounding first base.
MLB.com has the video of Scott barely making it to the plate by hopping and limping his way to second base and actually pausing for a moment once he reached third base. Scott said afterward that “it doesn’t look good” and he’ll likely undergo an MRI exam today, guessing that he’s “probably” bound for the DL because “any time you deal with a pulled hamstring it’s going to be at least two weeks.”
Felix Pie is just about ready to return from his own DL stint, so he’d likely take Scott’s roster spot and playing time. Scott’s batting average was below .200 as late as May 9, but he’s hit .328 with eight homers and 12 doubles in 40 games since then to raise his overall AVG/OBP/SLG line to .274/.348/.520, which would be the 32-year-old’s best production since his rookie season.
Signed to a one-year, $4.05 million deal and arbitration eligible again next season, Scott figured to be a potential trade deadline target for contenders in need of a veteran left-handed bat, but any more than a couple weeks on the DL could make it tough for the Orioles to get value for him before July 31.

MLB crowds jump from ’21, still below pre-pandemic levels

mlb
Logan Riely/Getty Images
1 Comment

PHOENIX — Even with the homer heroics of sluggers like Aaron Judge and Albert Pujols, Major League Baseball wasn’t able to coax fans to ballparks at pre-pandemic levels this season, though attendance did jump substantially from the COVID-19 affected campaign in 2021.

The 30 MLB teams drew nearly 64.6 million fans for the regular season that ended Wednesday, which is up from the 45.3 million who attended games in 2021, according to baseball-reference.com. This year’s numbers are still down from the 68.5 million who attended games in 2019, which was the last season that wasn’t affected by the pandemic.

The 111-win Los Angeles Dodgers led baseball with 3.86 million fans flocking to Dodger Stadium for an average of 47,672 per contest. The Oakland Athletics – who lost 102 games, play in an aging stadium and are the constant subject of relocation rumors – finished last, drawing just 787,902 fans for an average of less than 10,000 per game.

The St. Louis Cardinals finished second, drawing 3.32 million fans. They were followed by the Yankees (3.14 million), defending World Series champion Braves (3.13 million) and Padres (2.99 million).

The Toronto Blue Jays saw the biggest jump in attendance, rising from 805,901 fans to about 2.65 million. They were followed by the Cardinals, Yankees, Mariners, Dodgers, and Mets, which all drew more than a million fans more than in 2021.

The Rangers and Reds were the only teams to draw fewer fans than in 2021.

Only the Rangers started the 2021 season at full capacity and all 30 teams weren’t at 100% until July. No fans were allowed to attend regular season games in 2020.

MLB attendance had been declining slowly for years – even before the pandemic – after hitting its high mark of 79.4 million in 2007. This year’s 64.6 million fans is the fewest in a non-COVID-19 season since the sport expanded to 30 teams in 1998.

The lost attendance has been balanced in some ways by higher viewership on the sport’s MLB.TV streaming service. Viewers watched 11.5 billion minutes of content in 2022, which was a record high and up nearly 10% from 2021.