Willy Aybar continues to be an awful human being

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Friend of HBT Nick Collias just translated and relayed to me several Spanish language reports that have former Tampa Bay Ray Willy Aybar continuing to be a total scumbag.

He has been arrested multiple times for beating his wife — one time putting her into intensive care, but apparently he hasn’t learned anything from it. Now, according to Dionisio Soldevila, a reporter for the AP and ESPN Deportes, Aybar has been arrested for (a) beating to his girlfriend; and then (b) going to a strip club and not paying his bill; and then (c) resisting arrest and assaulting a police officer.

Aybar had been playing for the Licey Tigers in the Dominican Winter League. Licey has suspended him indefinitely.

What a frickin’ gentleman.

UPDATE:   Here’s a quote about the situation from Fernando Ravelo, the general manager of the Licey Tigers:

“There had been psychologists working with Willy. We did everything that could be done. A few days ago he abandoned the program, and look what happened.”

Indeed.

Minor League Baseball had its worst attendance in 14 years

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Baseball American reports today that total attendance at minor league baseball games reached a 14-year low in 2018. Total attendance was 40,450,337. That’s a drop of 1,382,027 fans compared to last season.

Around a third of that drop is attributable to fewer scheduled games but, as Baseball America notes, even when you go to average attendance per game, there was a sharp drop off this season. BA suggests that this represents a leveling off after over a decade’s worth of large increases in minor league attendance. Which sound pretty plausible. Overall, attendance numbers are still massively above where they were 15-20 years ago, so this seems more like a correction than a real problem. The BA article goes into some good analysis of the decline.

All of that said, revenues are up for the minors, in large part because of merchandise sales and because minor league ballparks have a lot more amenities and better concessions than they used to have and fans are willing to pay for them.