News release from the TinCaps:
Fort Wayne Ranked 7th-Best Minor League Market
SportsBusiness Journal Recognizes Fort Wayne in Study of 235 Markets
(August 12, 2013) – Fort Wayne is the seventh-best market in the country for minor league sports, according to a study released Monday by Street & Smith’s SportsBusiness Journal. The TinCaps, along with the Komets of the ECHL and the NBDL’S Mad Ants, helped the Summit City rise from a ranking of 19th in 2011.
“This is a testament to the entire Fort Wayne market,” TinCaps President Mike Nutter said. “Fort Wayne’s fans are the ones who deserve the most credit for an honor like this. The TinCaps, Komets, and Mad Ants are lucky to have the best fans in America. They make Parkview Field a fun place to work each day.”
SportsBusiness Journal’s research for the project included studying 235 markets, 47 leagues, 408 teams, 249.8 million in total minor league attendance, and $2.64 billion in construction at 50 new or extensively renovated venues. A market’s ranking is the result of calculations based on tenure, attendance, and economy.
In reviewing Fort Wayne, SportsBusiness Journal reported, “Despite a population growth rate of only 2.8 percent over the past five years, the market’s overall attendance count for its teams increased 13.8 percent.”
The TinCaps set a franchise record for attendance in 2012 by drawing 408,044 fans to Parkview Field. With 10 regular season games remaining, plus the playoffs, the final attendance total for the 2013 season could set a new record.
Previously in the SportsBusiness Journal’s biannual rankings, Fort Wayne finished seventh in 2005, first in 2007, second in 2009.
The only markets to top the Summit City in the most recent rankings are Toledo, Ohio, Rochester, N.Y., Hershey-Harrisburg, Penn., San Bernardino, Cal., Springfield, Mass., and Syracuse, N.Y.