Dr. David Fletcher, the head of the Chicago Baseball Museum weighs in on this subject:
There was a very good crowd last night at the Cell and also it featured the most diverse demographics I had seen at the Cell in a long time.
I like to leave the press box for a couple innings and just circle the 1st level and sit in different seats for a half inning or so and get a sense of the fan base and the mood of the crowd. I also like look at the demographics of the fans.
I counted more than 200 African-American fans (about 150 more than I usually see there at the Cell in the lower deck and about 190 more black fans that I usually see at Wrigley) which I found encouraging for the Sox who need to pull in the diverse fan base that exists in Chicago to build a new generation of fans.
It was a very joyous night at 35th and Shields—the most excitement and fun in a long time. Outfield seats were 90% full and fans were having fun.
The crowd brought a lot of energy to the players last night especially when the Twins took the lead 2-0 and later won 4-2. It was late September playoff drive baseball atmosphere at its best.
After the game which featured a great fireworks show (last of the season since today's game was moved up to 3PM) , the crowd stayed around the park and lots of people were tailgating still or at Barcardi's at the Park. The other local Bridgeport spots were also hopping.
Nancy Faust had a great idea about giving up one or two commercials a game and using that television time to show how much fun the fans are having at the ball park. Having a roving camera go out through the crowd and shoot shots of people being entertained and having fun. Have shots of fans enjoying the diverse food selections that US Cellular offers the fan base. I tried a stuffed burger last night that was outstanding and I felt was worth the $10 bucks.
Mark Liptak's comments and observations were right on.
Have several upper deck sections that are priced $10 and all year (even so called premium dates) and get a new generation of fans hooked on the Sox and the experience of coming to the Cell. Continue to develop around the park and offer reasons for people to come to the Cell even on non-game days even to mingle with fellow baseball fans when the Sox are on the road or it is the off season.
Chicago has the fan base to draw nearly 6 million. A winning product helps sell as the Cubs are now learning that lesson as I attended a couple afternoon weekday games there this month where there were less 15, 000 fans actually in the seats and they could have closed the upper deck like they used to.
Good job Lip!!