by Rob Toledo Rob Toledo

Baseball is only a few months away, just in time for the winter to turn to spring, meaning it’s time to start getting excited about spring training news heating up alongside the weather.

In order to determine just how excited every fan base is for the 2017 MLB season, we put together a SportFacts Optimism Score for each team.


  • We polled baseball fans, asking them for their favorite team, and how optimistic they are about their team’s chances in the 2017 season to make the playoffs.
  • We compared the past several seasons’ records to see what team are trending positively or negatively.
  • We added in Vegas predictions for each team’s record to get a rough estimate of perceived 2017 success.
  • We weighted the number of responses from each fan against their favorite team’s record to determine sentiment.
  • Setting this on a scale of 1-50, we created an Optimism Score for each team’s fanbase.

Below you’ll find the data and a breakdown of what team fan bases are the most optimistic for 2017 and what fan bases are the least.

2017 MLB Fan Optimism Score

Team Fan Optimism Score
Chicago Cubs 48
Washington Nationals 47
Cleveland Indians 46
Baltimore Orioles 43
Boston Red Sox 42
Seattle Mariners 42
Texas Rangers 41
Los Angeles Dodgers 39
Detroit Tigers 39
San Francisco Giants 34
New York Mets 31
Toronto Blue Jays 30
New York Yankees 24
Philadelphia Phillies 22
Houston Astros 21
Florida Marlins 21
St. Louis Cardinals 20
Colorado Rockies 20
Kansas City Royals 19
Chicago White Sox 17
Cincinnati Reds 15
Pittsburgh Pirates 14
Los Angeles Angels 14
Milwaukee Brewers 14
Arizona Diamondbacks 13
Oakland Athletics 12
Atlanta Braves 10
San Diego Padres 9
Tampa Bay Rays 8
Minnesota Twins 4
  • The Chicago Cubs, coming off of a World Series victory, have the most optimistic fans for another big season. The Washington Nationals and the Cleveland Indians round out the top three.
  • The Minnesota Twins fans, who witnessed a major collapse in 2016, are the least optimistic about the 2017 season’s chances. The Tampa Bay Rays and San Diego Padres round out the bottom three.
  • The Seattle Mariners fans, despite witnessing another heartbreaking year added to the playoff drought, are optimistic that 2017 is the year this streak will end. The New York Mets sentiment was similar last year, but dropped this year.
  • St. Louis Cardinals fans, despite maintaining a positive record in 2016 but after a slight decline from 2015, seemed the most pessimistic about the upcoming season compared to their record.

We’re excited to follow along with the 2017 season to see whose optimism is well-placed, and who might end up disappointed.