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Baseball’s Aging Viewers


The average age of MLB TV viewers is 57, up from 53 a decade ago. Men’s basketball has an average age of 42.








June 17, 2017 / Barron's



Pitchout: The average age of MLB viewers is 57, up from 53 a decade ago. Men’s pro basketball sports an average age of 42. William Waitzman for Barron’s
For America’s national pastime, every day is looking like Old Timers’ Day.

Major League Baseball is having a tough time attracting younger viewers to its broadcasts, according to a recent study from the Sports Business Journal and marketing consultant Magna Global. The average age of MLB viewers is 57, up from 53 a decade ago. Ominously, children under 18 make up a smaller portion of the overall audience than they did back then.

Baseball isn’t the only sport with age issues. When it comes to most sports, the median age of viewers is climbing significantly faster than that of the overall U.S. population, the study noted. Golf and men’s tennis have the oldest TV audiences, at 64 and 61, respectively. Men’s pro basketball is still relatively youthful, with an average age of 42, while pro football is at 50.

Interestingly, though men’s tennis is aging quickly, women’s tennis was the only professional sport whose viewership got younger, perhaps due to increased social-media usage by players on the tour.

So why are internet giants like Amazon.com, Facebook , and Twitter willing to pay ballooning sums for pro sports content? The companies are betting that younger viewers are still interested in sports, but not in watching full games in front of the TV. Amazon will reportedly cough up $50 million for the rights to stream 10 Thursday Night Football games, for which Twitter paid an estimated $10 million last season.

If there’s any consolation for big-league sports, it’s that they aren’t broadcast networks. As Barclays analyst Kannan Venkateshwar wrote last week, “The broadcast viewer base is aging even faster than sports.”
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Baseball’s Aging Viewers


The average age of MLB TV viewers is 57, up from 53 a decade ago. Men’s basketball has an average age of 42.








June 17, 2017 / Barron's



Pitchout: The average age of MLB viewers is 57, up from 53 a decade ago. Men’s pro basketball sports an average age of 42. William Waitzman for Barron’s
For America’s national pastime, every day is looking like Old Timers’ Day.

Major League Baseball is having a tough time attracting younger viewers to its broadcasts, according to a recent study from the Sports Business Journal and marketing consultant Magna Global. The average age of MLB viewers is 57, up from 53 a decade ago. Ominously, children under 18 make up a smaller portion of the overall audience than they did back then.

Baseball isn’t the only sport with age issues. When it comes to most sports, the median age of viewers is climbing significantly faster than that of the overall U.S. population, the study noted. Golf and men’s tennis have the oldest TV audiences, at 64 and 61, respectively. Men’s pro basketball is still relatively youthful, with an average age of 42, while pro football is at 50.

Interestingly, though men’s tennis is aging quickly, women’s tennis was the only professional sport whose viewership got younger, perhaps due to increased social-media usage by players on the tour.

So why are internet giants like Amazon.com, Facebook , and Twitter willing to pay ballooning sums for pro sports content? The companies are betting that younger viewers are still interested in sports, but not in watching full games in front of the TV. Amazon will reportedly cough up $50 million for the rights to stream 10 Thursday Night Football games, for which Twitter paid an estimated $10 million last season.

If there’s any consolation for big-league sports, it’s that they aren’t broadcast networks. As Barclays analyst Kannan Venkateshwar wrote last week, “The broadcast viewer base is aging even faster than sports.”


This article confirms what we already know
MLB is unwatchable - the games are way too long
When I was a kid, most games were about 2 hours long
Rarely did they run 3 hours, which is probably less than average game today
Also, when I was a kid, we had 7 channels available to us
Today, the choices are endless, so "conventional" TV viewership is down overall
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This article confirms what we already know
MLB is unwatchable - the games are way too long
When I was a kid, most games were about 2 hours long
Rarely did they run 3 hours, which is probably less than average game today
Also, when I was a kid, we had 7 channels available to us
Today, the choices are endless, so "conventional" TV viewership is down overall


Time to juice the balls again -- although I've heard speculation on sports radio more than once that they have already done so.

I keep track of what's going on online, but aside from the one or two Giants or A's games I go to a year, I almost never watch a game from beginning to end.
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This article confirms what we already know
MLB is unwatchable - the games are way too long
When I was a kid, most games were about 2 hours long
Rarely did they run 3 hours, which is probably less than average game today
Also, when I was a kid, we had 7 channels available to us
Today, the choices are endless, so "conventional" TV viewership is down overall


Time to juice the balls again -- although I've heard speculation on sports radio more than once that they have already done so.

I keep track of what's going on online, but aside from the one or two Giants or A's games I go to a year, I almost never watch a game from beginning to end.


Are you kidding . Homeruns are being hit at a ridiculously high rate this year which produce more strikeouts and more walks, both of which take time and produce little to no action.
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This article confirms what we already know
MLB is unwatchable - the games are way too long
When I was a kid, most games were about 2 hours long
Rarely did they run 3 hours, which is probably less than average game today
Also, when I was a kid, we had 7 channels available to us
Today, the choices are endless, so "conventional" TV viewership is down overall


Time to juice the balls again -- although I've heard speculation on sports radio more than once that they have already done so.

I keep track of what's going on online, but aside from the one or two Giants or A's games I go to a year, I almost never watch a game from beginning to end.


Are you kidding . Homeruns are being hit at a ridiculously high rate this year which produce more strikeouts and more walks, both of which take time and produce little to no action.


Casual fans want homers. If you want a bigger audience, you need them. So whether that's juiced balls, or looking the other direction when Barry Bonds' head grew 11 hat sizes, baseball has been known to do it when interest is down, correct?
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Yeah, I feel like I aged out of baseball besides NY teams in the playoffs. Too slow, I ain't got much longer to live. Can't waste 567 hours per year watching my teams games. But I watch EPL and golf, go figure (most EPL is only on til 9am so I still have the rest of the day). And golf is golf. Only sport I still play so one I watch.
There have been nearly 3000 Gods so far but only yours actually exists.The others are silly made up nonsense. But not yours. Yours is real.
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Aside from the fact that baseball is a game of patience and nobody has that any more, when some of us were kids, baseball was part of the fabric of our country. It just isn't any more. Pro sports are much more circus than sport. The "new" style major league parks are great and without a doubt the food is exponentially better but there is definitely a lack of nostalgia and original charm.

The last NBA game I went to, I sat in a VIP seat complete with my own monitor attached to my seat which served as both video of the game and concierge, as the guest of an NBA exec and had a gourmet meal served to me while the talent show went on during every possible break with t-shirt cannons etc. The only thing missing was a lion tamer and frankly I was miserable. Without exaggeration I have a much better time in a sweaty gym watching CYO. I took my youngest son to see the Harlem Globe Trotters a few months back at a small college gym and had a great time. That seems more honest to me as a show with a very specific outcome that everyone over say 9 years old, understands.

(IMO) The NFL is a travesty the way players are treated...
Chuck Norris once fought superman. The loser had to wear his underwear over his pants.
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I can still watch a met game no problem ( except for this year because I get so angry I end up reaching for the ambien at 11pm )

Someone mentioned the amount of channels and options. That is definitely a major factor. Also aging baseball population I think maybe has to do with baby boomers getting older and kids just having more sports options.

Plus going to ballgames nowadays for a family is just so expensive when you factor in tix and food the kids just dont get that same bonding experience as we did as kids so they dont have the same ties to the game

Hoops I think is different because it's so cheap for kids to play and not as time consuming for parents. I dont have any friends who spend hours playing ball after work with their kids anymore like when I was young because everyone works so much
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