It’s been a while since I got my fingernails dirty with some real hard-hitting journalism, so you can imagine my delight when this latest topic came across the blotter. Ah, who am I kidding, this is as fluffy as the kitten we rescued from our trash can last year.
Cubs fans are frequently accused of attending Wrigley Field solely because it’s Chicago’s largest beer garden, but a recent study from NJ Online Gambling says otherwise. You actually have to head down the Red Line to find the real watering hole, as it appears as though the South Side is home to baseball’s thirstiest denizens. Having patronized the Craft Kave at Guaranteed Rate Field myself, I can say these results are not surprising.
Sox fans surveyed consumed an average of 4.2 adult beverages per game, narrowly outpacing the Cobb County Braves for the lead. Interestingly enough, the Cubs are all the way back in a tie with the Diamondbacks for 13th overall at 3.4 drinks. That’s behind both the Reds (3.8), who have a wonderful craft beer section of their own, and the Brewers (3.5) for third in the NL Central.
Is it odd that a team literally named for beer-making doesn’t even crack the top seven? Maybe it’s because they don’t actually have that many of their own fans at the ballpark.
For what it’s worth, Sox fans only spend $1 more than Cubs fans despite consuming almost one more beverage, so maybe they’re just smarter investors. Mets fans drop an average of $53 for 3.5 drinks, the highest cost in MLB, but most would probably pay much more to forget the last few seasons in Queens. Rangers fans ($22) spend the least, but Phillies fans drinking the least (2.4) is the most dubious part of this whole study.
The Sox fell to third when it came to pregaming, which I don’t find quite as strange as the Cubs not appearing in the top 12. Does anyone out there believe more Cubs fans aren’t tipping a barley soda or three in Wrigleyville before the game? C’mon, now.
Both Chicago teams rebound with appearances on the survey when it comes to those most likely to have missed some or all of the game due to drinking too much. The Sox again take first place by a nose, this time over the Reds, while the Cubs come in ninth.
I think we should note that these results could be skewed by sampling thousands of fans who haven’t attended a game in person since 2019. I mean, how many people just want to go to a game and have a beer in the sunshine? Taking that a step further, it’s entirely possible that a lot of respondents are exaggerating their previous exploits due to nostalgia alone.
From Jan. 27 – Feb. 17, 2021, we surveyed 2,631 self-reporting Major League Baseball fans who were over the age of 21 from around the country. Fans were asked how many alcoholic beverages they typically consume while watching a baseball game as well as how much they typically spend on alcoholic beverages while watching a baseball game. 58% of respondents were male and 42% were female. The average age of respondents was 36 years old.
I doubt this will do anything to reverse the silly notion that Wrigley is just a part, but I think it’s pretty clear that Cubs fans aren’t alone when it comes to enjoying their alcohol when they attend games.