Attendance trends after 23 games at PNC Park

All of the attendance talk last week piqued my curiosity. I won’t debate the reasons why fans stay away from PNC Park, or why you should or shouldn’t attend more games. I won’t say what needs to happen for the Pirates to draw better crowds, either.
I only wanted to see what the attendance trends were at this point in the season, and I figured as long as I was going through the trouble, I might as well publish the findings here.
All of the data was collected from the box scores available on the Pirates’ schedule page.
First, the boring chart that lists the vitals for each of the Pirates’ home games. From left to right, the categories are: date of the game; opponent faced; whether the Pirates won or lost; the Pirates’ starting pitcher; the weather in Pittsburgh as listed on MLB.com; the day of the week the game was played; and, of course, the announced attendance.

Date

Opp.

W/L

Pitcher

Weather

Day

Attendance

4/9

STL

L

Snell

37, cloudy

Monday

38,429

4/10

STL

L

Gorzelanny

44, cloudy

Tuesday

12,468

4/11

STL

L

Maholm

45, cloudy

Wednesday

9,959

4/13

SF

L

Duke

49, cloudy

Friday

22,117

4/24

HOU

W

Maholm

67, clear

Tuesday

13,062

4/25

HOU

W

Duke

46, cloudy

Wednesday

8,201

4/26

HOU

W

Armas

58, cloudy

Thursday

12,056

4/27

CIN

W

Snell

61, cloudy

Friday

22,638

4/28

CIN

L

Gorzelanny

53, cloudy

Saturday

29,514

4/29

CIN

L

Maholm

67, sunny

Sunday

18,409

4/30

CHC

W

Duke

72, clear

Monday

11,437

5/1

CHC

L

Armas

81, cloudy

Tuesday

13,082

5/2

CHC

L

Snell

65, sunny

Wednesday

21,765

5/11

ATL

L

Duke

77, cloudy

Friday

23,376

5/12

ATL

L

Armas

69, cloudy

Saturday

34,775

5/13

ATL

W

Snell

62, sunny

Sunday

19,484

5/14

FLA

W

Gorzelanny

72, cloudy

Monday

12,958

5/15

FLA

L

Maholm

82, clear

Tuesday

12,764

5/16

FLA

L

Duke

57, cloudy

Wednesday

15,086

5/17

FLA

W

Armas

53, cloudy

Thursday

9,582

5/18

ARI

W

Snell

61, cloudy

Friday

32,682

5/19

ARI

L

Gorzelanny

63, cloudy

Saturday

30,677

5/20

ARI

L

Maholm

68, cloudy

Sunday

24,282

Now, a few quick graphs. All are clickable; you’ll be taken to a Photobucket page where you can view a larger image.
The average attendance for each day of the week. I’ve removed the attendance from Opening Day because it seemed to unfairly skew Monday’s data:


Average attendance by starting pitcher. Snell gets Opening Day counted here, because he earned it:

Average attendance by weather conditions. For the purposes of this brief study, I only considered temperature. Anything below 50 degrees was classified as cold; 51-69, average; 70 and above, warm:

I wasn’t trying to prove anything, so I’ll skip the conclusion. I have the data saved, so if there’s any other chart you’d like to see, let me know.

Author: Randy Linville

Randy is currently living and thriving in suburban Dayton, OH with his wife and two kids. He was raised in Cincinnati, OH and attended Anderson High School. He went to Miami University (Ohio) and received a degree in Paper Science Engineering from MU. He is a devout Christian and a pop culture buff. He coaches his son’s baseball and basketball teams and his daughters softball and basketball teams. Randy has been a Pirates fan since the late 1970s and has fond memories of the 1979 World Series team. He began blogging for Most Valuable Network in 5/2004 after stumbling across a help-wanted sign for a Pirates blogger. He wrote for Pittsburgh Lumber Co. until the site merged with Pirates Prospects in 2/2011.

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  • Alan Saunders

    Cory, here’s the attendance broken down by promotion. I left out opening night:
    Fireworks: 22,578
    Bobblehead: 29,270
    HOF coin: 12,971
    Kids promotion: 18,449
    Nationality day (only 1 so far): 24,252
    Ladies promotion: 11,643
    Scratch and win night: 12,197

  • nicolas

    you forgot one other sorting style, cory:
    opening day – 38,429
    average for three fireworks nights – 22,596
    average for four bobblehead nights – 29,271
    average for other home games (14 total)- 14,438
    average for other home games, minus three highest totals (appearances by randy johnson, snell, and snell) (11 total) – 12,418
    so people come for the fireworks, the bobbleheads, to watch snell pitch, and perhaps some big name out of towner.
    maybe that “35% of the fans come for the promotions” estimate was a little bit off?

  • http://mvn.com/mlb-pirates Cory Humes

    Thanks, guys.