In a front page story in Thursday's paper, Miami Herald sportswriter Michelle Kaufman wrote breathlessly about the upcoming four game series between our beloved Marlins and the Philadelphia Phillies.
Baseball fans across the nation will have their eyes on Land Shark Stadium as the second-place Marlins, four games back, try to make up critical ground on the Phillies in the biggest game of the day.Well, let's check and see how excited the fans were.
"Other than Lance [Armstrong] in the Tour de France, we are the biggest thing going in American sports on this day," said Sean Flynn, the Marlins' vice president of marketing. "A second-place team heading into a four-game series against the first-place team, this is what you hope for on a mid-July day when not much else is going on. I can feel the buzz around here. People are excited."
Crowds of upwards of 30,000 are expected, as the Phillies, the defending World Series champions, are typically a good draw, and even more so at this point in the season.
According to ESPN.com, last night's stadium attendance was an astounding 15,171 (39.3% full) well below the 30,000 that Kaufman predicted. And that leaves me wondering if Kaufman is on the payroll of the Herald or the Marlins.
However I'm sure that attendance at Marlins games will skyrocket just as soon as our new $634 million stadium opens.
They break ground on the new stadium tomorrow! Be there and be part of the excitement! After all, you're paying for it!