Runs are being scored at rates that are drawing more and more fans to ballparks across the country. Never was that more apparent than a random night of games Tuesday night, when teams came together to do something that's never been done in MLB history. And, by the way, we're approaching 150 MLB seasons.
A Night Like No Other For MLB
Yes, on Tuesday, July 18, a record was set. It was the first time in MLB history that 12 teams scored double-digit runs in a game. The feat wasn't even accomplished during the so-called Steroid Era — when Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa and Barry Bonds were launching balls into the ozone layer.
There were 12 or more instances of a team scoring double-digit runs in a game on July 4, 1894 (13) and May 30, 1884 (12), but each of those involved team(s) doing so in both ends of a doubleheader (so fewer than 12 distinct teams were involved).
— OptaSTATS (@OptaSTATS) July 19, 2023
In the craziest game of the night, the Arizona Diamondbacks beat the Atlanta Braves by a very football-like score of 16-13. The New York Mets and Chicago White Sox both hit double digits, with the Mets winning 11-10. The San Francisco Giants beat the Cincinnati Reds by that same score. So did the Kansas City Royals, who beat the Detroit Tigers 11-10. The Chicago Cubs dismantled the Washington Nationals 17-3. And the Los Angeles Dodgers, Cleveland Guardians and Minnesota Twins all scored 10 runs in each of their wins.
This wasn't some random occurrence. Baseball scoreboards have been busy this season. Runs, home runs and stolen bases are up from last year. Speedsters such as Ronald Acuña Jr., Corbin Carroll and Elly De La Cruz have brought back a once-fundamental part of the game, and it's genuinely a blast to watch.
Baseball's new rules are drawing more fans to the park to watch this quicker, exciting version of America's pastime, too. Overall MLB attendance was up more than 8% from last year through this year's All-Star break. ESPN's MLB viewership, which includes "Sunday Night Baseball," is up 7% year over year, according to a mid-June report.
While there was some aversion to the pitch clock at the beginning of the season, it's clear that it's doing its job. And most fans — and probably players as well — don't even notice it anymore. Good work, MLB.
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