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Were Major League Baseball Doubleheaders a Mistake?


  • Layson, Stephen

    () (University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Department of Economics)

  • Rhodes, M. Taylor

    () (University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Department of Economics)


This paper uses daily Major League Baseball (MLB) data from 1938 to 2009 as well annual MLB data from 1920 to 2009 to estimate the effects of doubleheaders on attendance. The annual data over various sub-samples from 1920-2009 indicate that the number of doubleheaders have either a negative or an insignificant effect on annual attendance. The daily data from 1938-2009 show that doubleheaders have a very positive effect on attendance on the day of the doubleheaders but that this is substantially offset by reduced attendance at single games 3 days surrounding doubleheaders. This leads us to question the widespread use of doubleheaders.

Suggested Citation

  • Layson, Stephen & Rhodes, M. Taylor, 2011. "Were Major League Baseball Doubleheaders a Mistake?," UNCG Economics Working Papers 11-5, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:ris:uncgec:2011_005

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    More about this item


    sports; attendance;

    JEL classification:

    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • L83 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Sports; Gambling; Restaurants; Recreation; Tourism

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