Major League Baseball (MLB) executives know they are dealing with an aging base with an average fan age of 57 versus the NFL, NHL and NBA at ages 50, 49 and 42 respectively.

The Baltimore Orioles believe they have an unorthodox solution that involves allowing parents to bring their children age 9 and under to the games for free, the first program of its kind in baseball. The intent is to use this as a carrot to bring more paying adults into the ball park.

Clearly, baseball is attempting to bring back the glory days of past years before other sports supplanted the game’s importance to American sports fans.

So, regarding young fans, the Orioles are offering an activity center, kid-friendly food and other incentives to spark interest, but it will take time to ascertain if these family-friendly moves are enough to pull young fans away from the more popular NFL, NHL and NBA.