One of the dumbest things a company can do in the corporate world is alienate a large portion of their consumer base. Appealing to the widest swath of people is just good business because it maximizes the pool from which you can draw profit. That fact is also true for sports teams, which are still businesses at the end of the day. You especially don’t spit in the face of one of your strongest demographics.
That’s exactly what Major League Baseball did, though, and they are learning that lesson the hard way as new data shows just how dumb their decision to get political was. For background, the MLB pulled their all-star game out of Georgia as a protest against a recent election reform bill. In actuality, the reasons for the move were based on lies told by figures like Stacey Abrams.
And while Republicans once made up one of the strongest consumer bases for the MLB, things are cratering.
In mid-March, MLB's net favorability rating among Republicans was 47%, the highest of the four major U.S. sports leagues. Since then, it has plummeted to 12%, dropping the league below the NFL and NHL, according to new data. https://t.co/nxF2b3kjs8
— Axios (@axios) April 15, 2021
Those that say this won’t make a difference didn’t pay attention to the NFL ratings drop during the anthem controversy. Republicans are much more apt to follow through on boycott threats these days than they once were. Anecdotally, I’ve heard from many people in my life who say they are done with the MLB until they stop shoving politics down people’s throats. The derision started with Black Lives Matter being plastered everywhere last year. It’s continued this year with false claims of voter suppression and boycotting the state of Georgia for no legitimate reason whatsoever.
Further, the MLB was already suffering before this due to decreasing interest in their sport. Who on earth thought now was a good time to become overtly political and get fully woke via the commands of divisive figures like Abrams? Whoever made that decision should be fired because it was incredibly stupid from a business standpoint.
Look, you can push people, but only so far. People want to be able to go watch a baseball game without Democrat politics punching them in the face. If the MLB can’t provide that kind of non-partisan environment, their ratings and attendance are going to continue to suffer. It doesn’t have to be that way, but they seem to fear the left more than like making money these days.