November 28, 2011 [LINK / comment]

Franchise pages updated

Whoopee! The new (2012) edition of the World Almanac (and Book of Facts) just came out, showing the complete results of the 2011 baseball season, including the postseason series. That's pretty fast turnaround for a mass market publication, barely a month after the final game of the World Series. It also features, for the first time, the official population data from the 2010 Census, showing the continued decline of upper midwestern "Rust Belt" cities and the growth of cities in the "Sun Belt" south and southwest. And so, the Baseball cities page has been updated and corrected, at long last. (Yes, I know the data was already available online (, but I'm old fashioned, dang it!) Previously, that page had annual attendance data for 2001-2008; now it simply shows the average attendance and growth rates for the previous decade as a whole, with annual data for 2010 and 2011. The analytical text on that page needs to be updated, which I expect to complete in the next few days.

Left out of that table are some of the other cities that could conceivably become home to a Major League team some day, if they add new franchises (very doubtful), or relocate either the Tampa Bay Rays or Oakland Athletics. The table below shows the top five such cities, including the third biggest city in Canada, Vancouver. Montreal should not be overlooked, if relocation ever happens again. Orlando, FL, [San Antonio, TX,] and Riverside, CA might qualify in terms of population, but they are so close to bigger cities that already have baseball teams that it just wouldn't make sense.

Other possible
baseball cities:
2010 population
Portland, OR 2,226,009
Vancouver, BC 2,220,306*
Sacramento, CA [2,149,127]
Las Vegas, NV 1,951,269
San Jose, CA 1,836,911

In addition, I updated the 19th Century Leagues page and the Baseball in Washington (D.C.) page. Enjoy!

[UPDATE: Corrections made to the text and table above, and to the Baseball cities page; hat tip to Mike Zurawski. *Estimate, from the World Almanac.]