You may have seen one of those maps of the United States over the last month or so making the rounds with sports logos illustrating each state’s most loved or hated team in the NFL or college football. There is also one for baseball that is starting to make the rounds, showing which MLB team each state loves. Apparently our state loves the Pirates.
— Macho Row (@Macho_Row) August 18, 2014
I am not exactly sure what statistical information qualifies this data to be taken as fact, but it does have a couple of legs to stand on. First, on a statewide perspective, Pittsburgh sports teams seem to have a more widespread following outside of this corner of the state. The Steelers are more popular than the Eagles across the state, and the Penguins probably edge the Flyers in that department as well. The Pirates though, I am not quite ready to buy into that so easily.
True, the Pirates are the more successful franchise over the last few years. Nobody will dispute that, especially this season. The Pirates are also a very likeable team. Kudos to them. But the most loved in this state? Hold on just a second.
Forget the city of Philadelphia for a moment. On the whole, we’re not all that enthused about this year’s team but when push comes to shove I would think we would have the team’s back when asked for our favorite baseball team. But what about the most loved team in the northeast region of the state? Much to my dismay, that is just as often Yankee territory as it is any other team. Thanks to the geography and the Scranton-Wilkes Barre team now being affiliated with the Yankees. You will also find a good share of Mets fans in the region as well. In fact, there are probably more Yankees and Mets fans in the northeast than there are Phillies fans, but that is just a guess.
Need another reason to take this map with a grain of salt? See Florida. The Rays are not even the favorite baseball team in their own stadium.
But hey, congrats to the folks over at Where Have You Gone Andy Van Slyke. You win this one. I would be curious what the results would have looked like a couple of years ago though. Also, where would the Taney Dragons compare if they were eligible for this map today?