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Convergence, clustering and their effects on attendance in the Japan Professional Baseball League

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In this research, using a panel data set for the Japan Professional Baseball League (JPBL) during the post-WWII period, we apply the technique developed by Hobijn and Franses (2000) to examine the competitive balance from the view point of convergence and its effect upon game attendance. The JPBL comprises two leagues, the Central League (CL) and the Pacific League (PL). The CL is far more popular with fans than the PL. Our estimation results showed that the number of the PL clusters continues to go towards unity, thereby raising the uncertainty of the outcome to increase the PL game attendance more rapidly. Also, attendance by CL fans tends to be more inelastic with team performance than for the PL. Therefore, the PL payroll was more elastic to wins than that of the CL. The features of each League have crucial impacts on the outcomes and the behaviours of team insiders such as players and managers.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Economics, Seinan Gakuin University, Nishijin, Fukuoka 814-8511, Japan 2: Department of Economics, Asia University, Tokyo 180-8629, Japan

Publication date: November 1, 2009

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