Baltimore Chop: Can Washington D.C. support a major league baseball team?

Males and marriages: two important components from the Scarborough Study:

According to the Scarborough Study, major league baseball fans tend to be male (63%) and married (58%).  I have created a map for each of these statistics.  The males to females ratio map of the Mid-Atlantic region  is not terribly conclusion, but the married persons map of the region reveals a strong correlation between marriges and the presence of a major league baseball team.  Yet, this may be skewed by the high populations in those areas.

Aside from the study, I thought of some other important demographics that I believe Major League Baseball should consider in the location of baseball teams.

18-29 year olds:

The twenty-somethings are a cherished group among marketers.  They are at the starting point of consumption as they enter the job market and begin families.  I believe Major League Baseball should (and they have with a recent marketing campaign) strongly consider this group when considering the location or movement of a franchise.  The Scarborough Study revealed that 35-54 year olds make up the largest portion of baseball fans (40%).  Baseball has a much older demographic than the faster-paced, alternative sports; baseball needs to attract a younger audience if it hopes to succeed in the future.  The 18-29 years olds map in the mid-Atlantic reveals that D.C. has a high population, like many of the other baseball franchises in and around the region.  Further, there are other high concentrations of the 18-29 year olds in Virginia, and D.C. provides closer access to them than any other baseball team, including Baltimore, its chief rival.  Another map of 18-29 year olds, using normalization by area and a standard deviation classification , gives greater proof that a baseball team in D.C. would provide better access to an 18-29 year old population, than the existing teams in Baltimore and Pittsburgh.  Again, through this map, we can also see how high 18-29 year old populations in Virginia would be best served by a baseball franchise in Washington, D.C.


Current and desired demographics may include Hispanics.  Although I have not observed any evidence concerning the level of baseball fandom for Hispanics, due to the high percentage of Hispanic players in Major League Baseball, I believe their demongraphics should be considered when analyzing the validity of a franchise.  Here is a map of the Hispanic population normalized by area in the Mid-Atlantic region . Notice how the D.C. area have relatively high Hispanice populations, especially in comparison to other baseball markets, notably Baltimore, Pittsburgh, and Cleveland.  Here is another map of the Hispanic population .  This time I have normalized it by the 1999 population and classified it using standard deviation.  Again, it shows D.C.'s relatively high Hispanic population, especially in comparison to Cleveland, Pittsburgh, and their neighbor to the north, Baltimore.   


Due to the recent influx of Japanese baseball players, I believe Asian demographics should be considered when determining the vitality of a major league baseball franchise.  As you can see from this map of the continental United States , Asians are most predominant on the west coast.  In looking at the mid-atlantic region , Washington, D.C. has a very rich population of Asians, even more so than the Baltimore area. Further, D.C.'s population is higher than Cleveland and Pittsburgh's, cities that have major league franchises.  A franchise in D.C. would also be in the best position to draw Asian populations from various regions in Virginia, especially in comparison with Baltimore.  In short, D.C.'s high Asian population would certainly support one's position to place a baseball team in the capitol.  


Although I have not located any statistics to support my claim, I believe that baseball has fallen behind basketball and football with regard to the average African-American sports fan.  A strong reason may relate to the fact that football and basketball have a greater percentage of black players than does baseball.  In looking at a map of the black population in the mid-atlantic , one can see that Washington, DC is best suited to bring the African-Americans back to baseball park.  Not only does Washington, D.C. itself have a large black population, but to the south of the city, there is an extremely high population of African-Americans.  When one looks back upon the legacies of Jackie Robinson and the Negro Leagues, one can assume that baseball was once a very popular sport for African-Americans.  Although it is not listed by the Scarborough Study as a key demographic for baseball franchises at the present time, I believe major league baseball would like to try to compete better against basketball and football for the average black sports fan.  A baseball team in Washington, D.C. would be a nice start.