Reports about the death of baseball in America have been circulating for years. While it is true that baseball has lost some appeal with some age groups, it continues to be a favorite pastime of many Americans.

For years some have predicted the demise of baseball, a game that is slower and less international than soccer. Some recent polling shows something different.

The Los Angles Times recently reported that "Ipsos polled 1,035 American adults and asked whether they were fans of 13 sports." Participants could be fans of as few or as many sports as they liked.

According to the Times, "The NFL lead, of course, with 44 percent of respondents saying they were fans of the NFL." The poll found baseball finished second with 31 percent, college football was third with 29 percent, then the NBA with 24 percent, and college basketball with 23 percent.

Hockey finished in fifth place at 18 percent, and soccer in sixth with 17 percent.

New Bedford Bay Sox Struck Out By Lack Of Fan Support
New Bedford Bay Sox

A report on from April 2022 stated, "Baseball continues to be one of the most popular youth sports in North America." The site admits that participation numbers have declined.

The site stated, "When looking specifically at data published by the Aspen Institute for kids ages 6-12, the number of kids playing baseball in 2019 was 14.4 percent and in 2020, 12.1 percent." That's a 15.2 percent difference.

For 13-to-17-year-olds, the participation rate was 10.4 percent in 2019 but only 8.7 percent in 2020.

In 2008, New Bedford Mayor Scott Lang announced the Torrington Twisters of the Southern Division of the New England Collegiate Baseball League (NECBL) would relocate from Connecticut to New Bedford.

The New Bedford Bay Sox called Paul Walsh Field home from 2009 to 2019.

New Bedford Bay Sox Struck Out By Lack Of Fan Support
Townsquare Media Photo

Despite ownership and management changes, the Bay Sox made it to the postseason twice while playing in New Bedford. At the end of the 2019 season, the team folded.

The Bay Sox never made a connection with the people of New Bedford. Few people attended Bay Sox games.

Because Paul Walsh Field is a part of the New Bedford Public Schools system, alcohol was not permitted. In later years, beer was allowed, but only down the first base line, away from the action.

Some would blame poor promotion for the lack of community support for the Bay Sox.

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