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-   -   Question from non-American: is baseball popular (or indeed, existent) in the South? (https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=881046)

Sangahyando 08-26-2019 12:00 PM

Question from non-American: is baseball popular (or indeed, existent) in the South?
 
I'm from the Old World not the New, and my interest in sports is all but zero; however, something was brought to mind for me by current exchanges in MPSIMS, about Abner Doubleday and baseball. Things may be additionally clouded for me, by Harry Turtledove's alternative-history series where the Confederacy wins the Civil War in 1862, and successfully secedes. Please could folk enlighten me, as to the real world: does baseball thrive and have a big following in the south-eastern USA -- the area of the former Confederate States; or -- long memories and all that -- is it disliked there (a "Yankee" sport etc. etc.), thus "happening" there little or not at all?

(In Turtledove's "Southern Victory" universe, baseball is always a rather weird "niche" sport confined strictly to New England -- everywhere else in the USA and CSA, American football reigns sole and supreme; with detail differences in rules, between the two nations.)

OldGuy 08-26-2019 12:08 PM

There is a Major League team in Atlanta and two in Texas both of which were Confederate state. There are minor league teams throughout the South. It is also quite popular at colleges there. They get a longer season than norther states because spring comes earlier.

Little League is divided into regions. There is a Southeast which consists of some of the Confederate states plus West Virginia. The Southwest [sic] region has Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, Texas and some other states that had not joined the US by the time of the Civil War.

So yes Baseball is quite popular in the South. I also seem to recall stories of baseball being played in prisoner of war camps during the Civil War.

bordelond 08-26-2019 12:11 PM

Yes, baseball is a big deal in the Southern United States. Not as big as football at the collegiate and professional ranks, but still big at lower levels. Minor league baseball's history in the Southern U.S. (esp. if counting the Confederate state Texas as Southern) is long and distinguished. Same with youth baseball (Little League, et.al.).

So far as I know, there's never, ever been a stigma with baseball being a "Yankee" sport. In comparison, consider that Japanese sportsmen did not drop baseball circa the late 1940s despite it being one of the most popular sports of their fiercest WWII adversary.

Acsenray 08-26-2019 12:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sangahyando (Post 21826273)
I'm from the Old World not the New, and my interest in sports is all but zero; however, something was brought to mind for me by current exchanges in MPSIMS, about Abner Doubleday and baseball. Things may be additionally clouded for me, by Harry Turtledove's alternative-history series where the Confederacy wins the Civil War in 1862, and successfully secedes. Please could folk enlighten me, as to the real world: does baseball thrive and have a big following in the south-eastern USA -- the area of the former Confederate States; or -- long memories and all that -- is it disliked there (a "Yankee" sport etc. etc.), thus "happening" there little or not at all?

(In Turtledove's "Southern Victory" universe, baseball is always a rather weird "niche" sport confined strictly to New England -- everywhere else in the USA and CSA, American football reigns sole and supreme; with detail differences in rules, between the two nations.)

Today there's no regional stigma associated with baseball. Baseball began as a variation of rounders in Northeastern cities in the 19th century. But its popularity spread fast after the Civil War, with barnstorming teams and such. By the early 20th century, baseball was being played all over the country.

Baseball started as an urban game, but soon enough, many of the best players were coming from rural areas.

The first major league team in the Deep South didn't happen until the 1960s, but baseball had been played at lower levels all over the south, and many of the players for the largely northeastern major league teams were southerners.

But it's a plausible alternative history that you describe. If the Confederacy had won the war, maybe the ongoing tensions and rivalries would have prevented the cultural and commercial traffic that allowed baseball to become popular nationwide.

kenobi 65 08-26-2019 12:19 PM

My own observation is that, yes, in the South, football is a bigger deal than baseball -- but, fundamentally, that's been true in *most* of the U.S. for decades.

Major League Baseball didn't have a team in the "old South" until the 1960s -- the Houston Colt 45s, now known as the Astros, were formed in 1962, and the Braves moved to Atlanta from Milwaukee in 1966. But, to be fair, until the 1950s, Major League Baseball was really a regional league; it had teams no further west, nor further south, than St. Louis. But, there were (and still are) a number of minor leagues in the South, as well.

Also, many of the most successful college baseball teams are located in the South, including LSU, Texas, Virginia, and Miami.

So, is football bigger than baseball in the South? Yeah, I'd definitely say so. Does baseball have no presence or fan base in the South? I don't think that that's the case.

zimaane 08-26-2019 12:46 PM

There are also two teams in Florida, the Tampa Bay Rays and the Miami Marlins. Neither is wildly popular, which is kind of a puzzle considering the potential fanbase among Latin Americans in the state.

Lousiana State University is one of the most popular college teams.

Colibri 08-26-2019 12:49 PM

Moved to the Game Room.

Colibri
General Questions Moderator

cochrane 08-26-2019 12:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by OldGuy (Post 21826285)
There is a Major League team in Atlanta and two in Texas both of which were Confederate state. There are minor league teams throughout the South. It is also quite popular at colleges there. They get a longer season than norther states because spring comes earlier.

Little League is divided into regions. There is a Southeast which consists of some of the Confederate states plus West Virginia. The Southwest [sic] region has Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, Texas and some other states that had not joined the US by the time of the Civil War.

So yes Baseball is quite popular in the South. I also seem to recall stories of baseball being played in prisoner of war camps during the Civil War.

There are also two MLB teams in Florida, the Miami Marlins and the Tampa Bay Rays. In addition, half of the MLB teams hold spring training in Florida.

wedgehed 08-26-2019 01:11 PM

My late father (born in 1925 in Georgia) was a lifelong baseball fan. Even as a boy, he could follow MLB by reading newspaper reports & box scores. He could sometimes even listen to St. Louis Cardinal games on the radio.

The Atlanta Crackers were a very popular minor league team before the Braves moved to Atlanta.

kenobi 65 08-26-2019 01:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by zimaane (Post 21826356)
There are also two teams in Florida, the Tampa Bay Rays and the Miami Marlins. Neither is wildly popular, which is kind of a puzzle considering the potential fanbase among Latin Americans in the state.

It likely doesn't help that both teams have been bad for much of their existences, and that the Rays play in a terrible stadium in a bad location.

yabob 08-26-2019 01:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acsenray (Post 21826295)
...
The first major league team in the Deep South didn't happen until the 1960s, but baseball had been played at lower levels all over the south, and many of the players for the largely northeastern major league teams were southerners.
...

And the Deep South wasn't unique in the lack of MLB teams at that time. In 1960, there were 16 major league teams, very heavily concentrated in the northeast and midwest. Only 4 MLB teams were west of the Mississippi - St Louis (just barely), Kansas City (MO - still can be considered midwest), San Francisco and Los Angeles. The Giants and Dodgers were franchises that had moved to the west coast from New York only a couple years earlier.

RickJay 08-26-2019 01:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sangahyando (Post 21826273)
I'm from the Old World not the New, and my interest in sports is all but zero; however, something was brought to mind for me by current exchanges in MPSIMS, about Abner Doubleday and baseball. Things may be additionally clouded for me, by Harry Turtledove's alternative-history series where the Confederacy wins the Civil War in 1862, and successfully secedes. Please could folk enlighten me, as to the real world: does baseball thrive and have a big following in the south-eastern USA -- the area of the former Confederate States; or -- long memories and all that -- is it disliked there (a "Yankee" sport etc. etc.), thus "happening" there little or not at all?

(In Turtledove's "Southern Victory" universe, baseball is always a rather weird "niche" sport confined strictly to New England -- everywhere else in the USA and CSA, American football reigns sole and supreme; with detail differences in rules, between the two nations.)

Well, okay, that's fiction and should be ignored.

Baseball started in New York City and environs but was already unquestionably an America-wide obsession by the late 19th century. The first true professional baseball team was in Cincinnati, which is on the cusp of North and South.

Major League baseball, specifically, did not expand into the former Confederacy until 1962 (Houston) and shortly after Atlanta (1966) Dallas (1972) and Florida much later on. It should be borne in mind though that the early geographical restriction on Major League ball had nothing to do with popularity; it had everything to do with transportation. Baseball is played every day, and prior to reliable and affordable commercial air travel, it simply was not possible for a baseball league to practically span the whole continent. California, a hotbed of baseball, did not get a major league team until 1958 despite the fact that Los Angeles had been America's second greatest city for quite some time at that point - you just could not possibly have taken a train that far and not blown the schedule to pieces. Until the 1950s, there was no major league baseball south of Washington DC or west of St. Louis because there just couldn't be. Negro League ranged a bit further afield, but not by much; they certainly didn't go all the way to California.

Of course you may ask why baseball went to California before it did the South, since California is further. That's just where the biggest money was. The U.S. South didn't start growing huge cities in earnest until well after World War II.

kenobi 65 08-26-2019 01:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by yabob (Post 21826445)
In 1960, there were 16 major league teams, very heavily concentrated in the northeast and midwest. Only 4 MLB teams were west of the Mississippi - St Louis (just barely), Kansas City (MO - still can be considered midwest), San Francisco and Los Angeles. The Giants and Dodgers were franchises that had moved to the west coast from New York only a couple years earlier.

And, the A's were still newcomers to Kansas City at that point, having moved there from Philadelphia in 1955.

cochrane 08-26-2019 01:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RickJay (Post 21826451)
California, a hotbed of baseball, did not get a major league team until 1958 despite the fact that Los Angeles had been America's second greatest city for quite some time at that point.

Nitpick: The Census Bureau didn't announce Los Angeles as the second largest city until 1984, after it had surpassed Chicago in the 1980 census.

md2000 08-26-2019 01:51 PM

I think RickJay has it best - the major leagues started out in areas where there were huge populations to fill stadiums within reasonable travel distance in the days of rail travel. It expanded further once air travel became a reasonable way to get from place to place. After all, the MLB schedule is 160 games or so, and even playing a decent number of double headers that's a lot of game time, not leaving as much time for travel. A schedule where it took more than a day to get between cities was probably not feasible.

I also suspect by the time interest was peaking after WWI, radio was widespread enough that people in the south could follow northern games, so no competing southern league would be as popular?

Plus, I wonder how relevant weather was? It would be pretty hot sitting out in the sun in summer in the Good Old Days, worse in the south. Many teams now feature indoor venues with air conditioning.

dalej42 08-26-2019 02:05 PM

I can’t think of any sport that has much of a regional difference in the USA. Perhaps ice hockey, but teams have been successful in the south as well.

I’d say the main difference in the South is that there are so many transplants that come from colder weather climates and often keep their old team loyalties. I’d say that goes double for the two Florida teams.

While it’s true many people move to places like NYC and Chicago, the demographics are a bit different since you’re often dealing with recent college graduates moving to the big city. Even for me, lifelong baseball fan, my interest definitely waned in my early 20s as I was more interested in nightlife and meeting other singles than I was in who’s pitching today.

asterion 08-26-2019 03:04 PM

Agreed that baseball is popular in the South, but depending on how you define South there's only one MLB team, the Atlanta Braves. I'm still not convinced the Rays and Marlins have actual fans and not just transplants that only go to the game when the team they're a fan of because of where they used to live are in town. (Looking at you, people in the stands when the Yankees play the Rays).

At least I think of the Braves as the only Southern team. And whenever they're in the playoffs it makes me think of my late grandfather yelling at the TV.

Darren Garrison 08-26-2019 03:10 PM

Google textile league baseball. Does the name "Shoeless Joe Jackson" mean anything to you? That's where he came from. (The first mill he worked at--when he was 6 years old--was less than 10 miles from me.)

zimaane 08-26-2019 03:12 PM

In the 1920s there were Negro league teams (teams made up mostly of African Americans, who could not play in Major League Baseball) in the South, including Bimingham, Memphis, and Nashville:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Negro_...0%E2%80%931931)

cochrane 08-26-2019 03:39 PM

In spite of their attendance and success on the field (or the lack of it), the Marlins and the Rays do qualify for this thread. They do play in the major leagues and Florida was a part of the Confederacy. Also, before the dawn of the jet age, almost every one of the MLB teams held spring training in Florida.

aceplace57 08-26-2019 04:12 PM

The Arkansas University baseball team is one of the best in the SEC.

Dave Van Horn has coached Arkansas 17 seasons. We were playing in the College World Series a couple months ago.

The success of the University team has increased interest at the high school level.
Quote:

Van Horn's subsequent teams have had plenty of success as well, reaching the College World Series eight times, six occurring at Arkansas (2004, 2009, 2012, 2015, 2018, 2019), the other two during his tenure at Nebraska (2001 and 2002).

Acsenray 08-26-2019 04:15 PM

I think the important point is that in real life today, baseball is just as popular in the South as it is in the rest of the country. In a fictional story with an alternative timeline, it's perfectly plausible that baseball didn't become nationally popular.

Rick Kitchen 08-26-2019 04:19 PM

Florida and Florida State Universities are big baseball teams.
And the Louisiana team just won the Little League World Series.

zimaane 08-26-2019 04:25 PM

[QUOTE=dalej42;21826537]I canít think of any sport that has much of a regional difference in the USA. Perhaps ice hockey, but teams have been successful in the south as well.

QUOTE]

I would venture that hockey is still significantly more popular in the North/northeast than elsewhere in the country.

Other major sports are equally popular across regions.

Sangahyando 08-26-2019 04:32 PM

Thanks, everyone. As, basically, a sports-ignoramus, I feel complimented / overwhelmed by all the responses; with the mass of info, bringing in assorted factors. At all events, I now know that the South doesn't in any way boycott or eschew baseball.

Quote:

Originally Posted by bordelond (Post 21826291)
So far as I know, there's never, ever been a stigma with baseball being a "Yankee" sport. In comparison, consider that Japanese sportsmen did not drop baseball circa the late 1940s despite it being one of the most popular sports of their fiercest WWII adversary.

Ah, yes -- "beisoboru", don't those chaps call it? Something of a parallel -- I gather that Cuba was baseball-mad pre-1959, and has remained so, despite the country's relations with the US having been, shall we say, sub-optimal for the past sixty years.

Quote:

Originally Posted by md2000 (Post 21826513)
Plus, I wonder how relevant weather was? It would be pretty hot sitting out in the sun in summer in the Good Old Days, worse in the south. Many teams now feature indoor venues with air conditioning.

I can see the point here -- have never been to the US at all, but do get the picture that the climate of the country's south-east can be a trial to those who didn't grow up there -- and sometimes, to them too. Cuba again: I understand that there, and in the equally baseball-crazy Dominican Republic, there is great following of the game, and huge live audiences; and it's envisageably yet hotter there, than in the US South. One takes it that those Cubans and Dominicans are tough cookies...

The Harry Turtledove stuff -- I know (I think !) that it is only fiction, but I'm a fan. Picture is got that in that "universe", it's not only the Confederacy which doesn't "do" baseball -- same goes (without political / nationalistic factors) for nearly all of said "universe" 's United States: most of the northern "tier", the Midwest, the South-West, and California -- baseball is just not on the radar of people there, they're interested in football only: baseball is a strange and highly-localised thing, peculiar to New England and, I take it, New York State, where Abner Doubleday was born.

Re Turtledove's narrative: one takes it that Doubleday, born in 1819, must have been there as himself, in that "universe" -- giving rise to hypothesis that after things there start to go down the pan for the States as one united country, w.e.f. Sept. 10th 1862, the "point of divergence" (when a vital Confederate document which in "our time line" was lost and fell into Union hands; isn't lost, so that the South wins the battle of Antietam -- and wins the decisive battle, and the war, three weeks later) -- Doubleday gets killed in those last few weeks of the war, so never gets the chance to popularise baseball in the Union army.

Rick Kitchen 08-26-2019 04:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dalej42 (Post 21826537)
I canít think of any sport that has much of a regional difference in the USA. Perhaps ice hockey, but teams have been successful in the south as well.

Lacrosse?

Atamasama 08-26-2019 05:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rick Kitchen (Post 21826892)
Lacrosse?

Iíd suggest curling myself, but I might be wrong.

Knowed Out 08-26-2019 06:04 PM

OP, I read about a sport you play over there called Quidditch. You like riding brooms around and throwing Quaffles?

Atamasama 08-26-2019 06:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Knowed Out (Post 21827027)
OP, I read about a sport you play over there called Quidditch. You like riding brooms around and throwing Quaffles?

Fried chicken goes well with Quaffles.

Exapno Mapcase 08-26-2019 08:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sangahyando (Post 21826871)
Re Turtledove's narrative: one takes it that Doubleday, born in 1819, must have been there as himself, in that "universe" -- giving rise to hypothesis that after things there start to go down the pan for the States as one united country, w.e.f. Sept. 10th 1862, the "point of divergence" (when a vital Confederate document which in "our time line" was lost and fell into Union hands; isn't lost, so that the South wins the battle of Antietam -- and wins the decisive battle, and the war, three weeks later) -- Doubleday gets killed in those last few weeks of the war, so never gets the chance to popularise baseball in the Union army.

He's pulling your leg. Or he's a much worse historian than I thought. Abner Doubleday had absolutely nothing to do with baseball in any way. Albert Spaulding, a sports mogul, wanted a patriotic beginning to the sport and rigged a commission to "prove" that it was invented by Civil War hero Doubleday. Baseball had been around long before he was born and evolved as a sport all over the country. Both sides in the Civil War spent idle hours playing baseball. A large percentage of professional baseball players came from the South throughout its history, even though the teams were in the big northern cities. A much larger percentage would have if baseball had allowed "negroes" to play. The Negro Leagues included plenty of southerners, too.

Andy L 08-26-2019 09:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rick Kitchen (Post 21826892)
Lacrosse?

Just what I was going to suggest.

kenobi 65 08-26-2019 09:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Andy L (Post 21827303)
Just what I was going to suggest.

Yeah, I agree that lacrosse is probably one of the strongest examples. Extremely popular on the east coast / northeast, and it's played in high schools and colleges (and there's even several pro leagues), but it's somewhere between a niche sport and non-existent in much of the rest of the country.

kenobi 65 08-26-2019 09:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kenobi 65 (Post 21827311)
Extremely popular on the east coast / northeast, and it's played in high schools and colleges (and there's even several pro leagues)

That should have been "where it's played in high schools and colleges" :smack:

Slow Moving Vehicle 08-26-2019 10:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Exapno Mapcase (Post 21827246)
He's pulling your leg. Or he's a much worse historian than I thought. Abner Doubleday had absolutely nothing to do with baseball in any way. Albert Spaulding, a sports mogul, wanted a patriotic beginning to the sport and rigged a commission to "prove" that it was invented by Civil War hero Doubleday. Baseball had been around long before he was born and evolved as a sport all over the country. Both sides in the Civil War spent idle hours playing baseball. A large percentage of professional baseball players came from the South throughout its history, even though the teams were in the big northern cities. A much larger percentage would have if baseball had allowed "negroes" to play. The Negro Leagues included plenty of southerners, too.

Indeed, two of the greatest home run hitters in the history of the game were Southerners - Babe Ruth (from Maryland, culturally the South), and Henry Aaron, from Alabama.

Incidentally, Sangahyando, the history of baseball owes quite a bit to one of your lot: an expat English sportswriter named Henry Chadwick. He started covering baseball for the New York Times, as an outgrowth of his coverage of cricket (which was a popular sport in the US in the mid-19th century). Got hooked by the game, and subsequently promoted and refined it - it was he who managed to change the rule so that a ball caught in the air was an out - previously, a ball caught on one bound also counted. He published the first baseball guide, and was the first to list runs, home runs, strikeouts and outs. He devised the box score, and is credited with creating the earned run average and hitting average. He is sometimes called "the Father of Baseball". Arguable, but he had much more claim to the title than Abner Doubleday.

Andy L 08-26-2019 10:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Exapno Mapcase (Post 21827246)
He's pulling your leg. Or he's a much worse historian than I thought. Abner Doubleday had absolutely nothing to do with baseball in any way.

Turtledove doesn't attribute the absence of baseball to Doubleday's absence in the Southern Victory books - in the book no one knows about alternate universes, so no one can be wondering about the effect of the death of a minor figure on a minor sport

Per this Turtledove fan site https://turtledove.fandom.com/wiki/Abner_Doubleday Doubleday is mentioned in a Turtledove story, but not in the Southern Victory series.

Andy L 08-26-2019 10:32 PM

Nm

Jeff Lichtman 08-27-2019 03:11 AM

Let's not forget the minor leagues. In AAA (one level down from Major League Baseball) there are 10 southern teams:

Gwinett Stripes - Lawrenceville, GA
Charlotte Knights - Charlotte, NC
Durham Bulls - Durham, SC
Norfolk Tides - Norfolk, VA
El Paso Chihuahuas - El Paso, TX
Round Rock Express - Round Rock, TX
San Antonio Missions - San Antonio, TX
New Orleans Baby Cakes - New Orleans, LA
Memphis Redbirds - Memphis, TN
Nashville Sounds - Nashville, TN

I'm too lazy right now to see how many there are in AA, A, and Rookie leagues.

Boozahol Squid, P.I. 08-27-2019 09:07 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jeff Lichtman (Post 21827603)
Durham Bulls - Durham, SC

That's Durham, NC.

cochrane 08-27-2019 09:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jeff Lichtman (Post 21827603)
Let's not forget the minor leagues. In AAA (one level down from Major League Baseball) there are 10 southern teams:

Gwinett Stripes - Lawrenceville, GA
Charlotte Knights - Charlotte, NC
Durham Bulls - Durham, SC
Norfolk Tides - Norfolk, VA
El Paso Chihuahuas - El Paso, TX
Round Rock Express - Round Rock, TX
San Antonio Missions - San Antonio, TX
New Orleans Baby Cakes - New Orleans, LA
Memphis Redbirds - Memphis, TN
Nashville Sounds - Nashville, TN

I'm too lazy right now to see how many there are in AA, A, and Rookie leagues.

The ranks will be decreasing by one in 2020, as the New Orleans Baby Cakes will be relocating to Wichita, KS.

Jeff Lichtman 08-27-2019 11:55 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Boozahol Squid, P.I. (Post 21827859)
That's Durham, NC.

Oops, yeah. Sorry.

Procrustus 08-27-2019 11:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cochrane (Post 21827971)
The ranks will be decreasing by one in 2020, as the New Orleans Baby Cakes will be relocating to Wichita, KS.

Yeah, but you can add the Louisville (KY) Bats.

BobLibDem 08-27-2019 12:18 PM

Seems to me that rugby is more of a regional sport than others, being played in the northeast. Baseball is pretty universal. There may be pro hockey teams in the south, but as far as high school and college goes, it's a wasteland. Even the west coast is pretty devoid of college hockey, Arizona State may join the Big Ten as a hockey-only school just as Notre Dame is now. (The Big Ten has a lacrosse-only school in Johns Hopkins).

College baseball is bigger in the south than the north. Better weather during college baseball season, so much so that northern teams have to travel south and west during the early part of the season to play a steady diet of road games. Southern schools have a huge edge in recruiting and in getting more home games.

zimaane 08-27-2019 01:58 PM

Auto racing (NASCAR) is definitely still much more popular in the Southeast than anywhere else in the country. They do some races in New England and on the West Coast, but the fanbase and interest are mostly in the South.

Bijou Drains 08-27-2019 02:23 PM

NC had around 40 minor league teams in the 40s. Even now there are around 10.

Rick Kitchen 08-27-2019 02:27 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobLibDem (Post 21828292)
Seems to me that rugby is more of a regional sport than others, being played in the northeast. Baseball is pretty universal. There may be pro hockey teams in the south, but as far as high school and college goes, it's a wasteland. Even the west coast is pretty devoid of college hockey, Arizona State may join the Big Ten as a hockey-only school just as Notre Dame is now. (The Big Ten has a lacrosse-only school in Johns Hopkins).

College baseball is bigger in the south than the north. Better weather during college baseball season, so much so that northern teams have to travel south and west during the early part of the season to play a steady diet of road games. Southern schools have a huge edge in recruiting and in getting more home games.

The rugby team at the University of California is a major participant in the sport. The club has 28 national titles, including twelve consecutive championships from 1991 to 2002, five more consecutive titles from 2004 to 2008, and back-to-back titles in 2010 to 2011 and 2016 to 2017.

Slow Moving Vehicle 08-27-2019 02:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jeff Lichtman (Post 21827603)
Let's not forget the minor leagues. In AAA (one level down from Major League Baseball) there are 10 southern teams:

Gwinett Stripes - Lawrenceville, GA
Charlotte Knights - Charlotte, NC
Durham Bulls - Durham, SC
Norfolk Tides - Norfolk, VA
El Paso Chihuahuas - El Paso, TX
Round Rock Express - Round Rock, TX
San Antonio Missions - San Antonio, TX
New Orleans Baby Cakes - New Orleans, LA
Memphis Redbirds - Memphis, TN
Nashville Sounds - Nashville, TN

I'm too lazy right now to see how many there are in AA, A, and Rookie leagues.

Another nitpick - thatís Gwinnett Stripers. Lots of jokes in the Atlanta area about mispronunciations, when they changed their name.

asterion 08-27-2019 04:26 PM

While I get the general point about AAA, El Paso is decidedly not in The South. But I'd also say that the average trip to any one of those AAA games would definitely be cheaper and probably more fun than a Braves game.

BobLibDem 08-27-2019 07:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rick Kitchen (Post 21828553)
The rugby team at the University of California is a major participant in the sport. The club has 28 national titles, including twelve consecutive championships from 1991 to 2002, five more consecutive titles from 2004 to 2008, and back-to-back titles in 2010 to 2011 and 2016 to 2017.

Thanks for the info. The only times I've ever seen it were all northeast schools.

cochrane 08-27-2019 08:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by asterion (Post 21828779)
While I get the general point about AAA, El Paso is decidedly not in The South. But I'd also say that the average trip to any one of those AAA games would definitely be cheaper and probably more fun than a Braves game.

I think for the purpose of the OP, we can count El Paso, since Texas was in the Confederacy. And the Houston Astros and Texas Rangers in MLB have already been mentioned.

RickJay 08-28-2019 12:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Exapno Mapcase (Post 21827246)
He's pulling your leg. Or he's a much worse historian than I thought. Abner Doubleday had absolutely nothing to do with baseball in any way. Albert Spaulding, a sports mogul, wanted a patriotic beginning to the sport and rigged a commission to "prove" that it was invented by Civil War hero Doubleday. Baseball had been around long before he was born and evolved as a sport all over the country. Both sides in the Civil War spent idle hours playing baseball. A large percentage of professional baseball players came from the South throughout its history, even though the teams were in the big northern cities. A much larger percentage would have if baseball had allowed "negroes" to play. The Negro Leagues included plenty of southerners, too.

Indeed, the Negro Leagues were VERY southern in content. Almost all the greatest players were from the South; the only one I can think of offhand who wasn't was Oscar Charleston, who was from Pennsylvania (well, and Martin Dihigo, who was from Cuba, which is certainly south but not The South.)


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