MLB game draws shockingly sparse crowd, reportedly smallest in decades


For some baseball fans, it didn’t take long for the excitement of Opening Day to die out.

The Chicago White Sox had paid attendance of more than 33,000 people for their home opener April 5 against Detroit. Some fans didn’t show up because of the bitter cold and snow, but it was still a good crowd at Guaranteed Rate Field.

Four days — and four losses — later, the team played in front of just 974 fans.

While actual attendance figures are hard to pin down, it was one of the smallest MLB crowds in decades.

Satanic 'Pride' Creator Now Furious at Target, Reveals Which Retailer Is Now Helping Her

Paid attendance for the Sox’s game Monday against the Tampa Bay Rays was announced as 10,377, but the vast majority of those who bought tickets decided to stay home.

Photos of the crowd had some wondering whether even the 974 figure was exaggerated.

The smallest MLB crowd ever also involved the White Sox, but it wasn’t their fault. The Orioles hosted Chicago in an empty ballpark in 2015. The team decided to close the doors to Camden Yards amid rioting in Baltimore over the death of Freddie Gray in police custody.

Before that, the smallest crowd was six people who showed up for a September 1882 game in Massachusetts between the Worcester Ruby Legs and the visiting Troy Trojans of New York. Fans of the two teams stayed away when they learned the Ruby Legs and Trojans weren’t being renewed for the 1883 season.

Do you think MLB teams should lower their ticket prices?

Aside from the O’s empty stadium game, the lowest attendance in the past few decades reportedly came when the Braves hosted the Padres at the old Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium on Sept. 5, 1989, and drew a “crowd” of 1,528.

Last year, 1,590 fans reportedly showed up when at Marlins Park when Miami played the Phillies on May 31.

Catholic MLB Player Unleashes on Dodgers, Urges Fans to Take Action and 'Look to Jesus Christ'

As bad as that was, it’s a packed house compared with the White Sox game Monday.

Chicago lost to the Rays in that one 5-4, then dropped the second in the three-game series Tuesday 6-5.

The White Sox (3-7) will try to avoid the sweep Wednesday afternoon.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →

We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

, , ,
Todd Windsor is a senior story editor at The Western Journal. He has worked as an editor or reporter in news and sports for more than 30 years.
Todd Windsor is a senior story editor at The Western Journal. He was born in Baltimore and grew up in Maryland. He graduated from the University of Miami (he dreams of wearing the turnover chain) and has worked as an editor and reporter in news and sports for more than 30 years. Todd started at The Miami News (defunct) and went on to work at The News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C., the St. Petersburg (now Tampa Bay) Times, The Baltimore Sun and Space News before joining Liftable Media in 2016. He and his beautiful wife have two amazing daughters and a very old Beagle.
Bachelor of Science from the University of Miami
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Media, Sports