On September 15, 1978, the Los Angeles Dodgers defeated the Atlanta Braves with Don Sutton pitching a complete game shutout in the 5-0 victory, and they made MLB history off the field.
With 47,188 fans at Dodger Stadium that day, the Dodgers became the first team in MLB history to draw 3 million fans in home attendance. They also ended up accomplishing that feat six more times before any other team did so once.
The Dodgers finished the 1978 season with a home attendance of 3,347,845 for an average of 41,331 fans per game. The next closest team in attendance was the Philadelphia Phillies, drawing 2,583,389 fans throughout the season. By average per game, the Cincinnati Reds held the second spot with 31,656.
Only six teams drew more than 2 million fans that season and six hosted less than 1 million.
The New York Yankees, who went on to defeat the Dodgers in the World Series that season, had 2,335,871 fans come to the ballpark with an average of 28,838 per game.
Dodger fans have historically supported the team well. On Sept. 4, 1966, they became the first MLB team to draw more than 2 million in home and road attendance during the same season.
In 2022, the Dodgers once again surpassed 3 million fans in attendance, which marked a ninth time in the past 11 years the team has reached that threshold. The only exceptions came in 2020, when fans were not allowed to attend games, and 2021 due to limited capacity for a portion of the schedule.
The Dodgers also set the record for the largest attendance of the 2022 season three separate times. The first came on July 21 for Cody Bellinger bobblehead night against the San Francisco Giants when they had 53,165 on hand for the matchup.
Then on July 26, the Dodgers hosted 53,302 fans for Clayton Kershaw bobblehead night, but it was broken quickly with 53,432 fans in attendance for Freddie Freeman bobblehead night on Aug. 10.
Stan Kasten: Dodgers attendance makes impact
Dodgers president and CEO Stan Kasten has praised fans for continuing to support the team and he pointed to that in being a factor not only when assembling the roster but also for Dodger Stadium improvements.
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