Rays win again, fall into last place in attendance

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The following is cross-posted from Noah Pransky’s award-winning Shadow of the Stadium blog.

The Tampa Bay Rays nailed down their astonishing 21st win in 25 July games last night, but with just 17,402 in attendance, they fell into 30th place in the MLB attendance standings (17,783).  The Marlins, who lost again, mustering just four hits against the Mets, drew 23,408 and brought their season average up to 17,813.

It didn’t help that a nasty storm cell (featuring a waterspout) knocked out power to half of St. Petersburg last night and play was suspended at the Trop for 20 minutes.  But hey, at least it wasn’t rained out, right?  And at least they played Bugs Bunny:

NICE!!! @JohnLembo1878: Best part of #Trop power outage? They’re playing Bugs Bunny’s baseball cartoon on the big screen. Yes! #Rays
— Leigh Spann (@WFLALeigh) July 31, 2013

And as much as people will point to the team’s 30th-place attendance numbers, it doesn’t necessarily mean the team is struggling.  Rays Index reports that TV ratings are once again soaring:

Since April 1, Sun Sports is the no. 1 rated cable network in primetime and their ratings have risen 8% since June 28.

Playing the Red Sox and Yankees certainly helps. But these numbers show that fans are starting to get excited about this year’s club. And that could mean a surge in both the TV ratings and the attendance.

The Rays have a chance to climb out of the attendance cellar with $2 kids night tonight andthree games this weekend against the World Series Champion San Francisco Giants.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.