There have been some unusual injuries suffered by baseball players over the years. Sammy Sosa’s sneeze. Dave Hollins and the spider bites. Clint Barmes and deer meat. Jeff Kent and his truck. Add one more to the list.
Via Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Cardinals lefty reliever Marc Rzepczynski was injured when a golf ball ricocheted and struck him near the left eye. He will miss his scheduled outing tomorrow against the Marlins and could be out for a week as the team investigates the severity of the injury.
Rzepczynski posted a 4.24 ERA in 46.2 innings last season, pitching mostly in the seventh and eighth innings.
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.