Thursday, January 13, 2011

St. Pete Mayor: International Spring Training in '11 is Tryout for WBC Games in '13

Mayor Bill Foster, on his way to Tampa International Airport to welcome the city's first international spring training team, the Nexon Heros from Seoul, Korea, said he thinks a successful slate of games in 2011 can help St. Petersburg land World Baseball Classic games in 2013.

Foster says private donations will make up just about all of the subsidies the Canadian, Dutch, and Korean teams will receive. Additionally, the city will reap the rewards of hotel stays and retail sales from the squads' two-month visits.

The vision for international baseball in St. Pete is to host a 13-game slate in the spring of 2011, land World Baseball Classic play-in games in the fall of 2011, and a full round of WBC games in the spring of 2013.

While Foster and his sports lobbyist Jim Neader have done a great job of making international contacts in their first year, one has to wonder if the city's handling of the Rays' stadium demands will hurt its WBC chances. I also don't know if Bud Selig would allow WBC games to be played in the the league's only remaining domed stadium.


  1. Against Tax-Dollars being used for
    Professional Sports Stadiums

    I am against any state, county, or city Tax-Dollars being used for the construction and maintenance up-keep of professional sports stadiums.

    What other private businesses have their business buildings and grounds provide by the taxpayers of Florida?

    After the stadium is built and the sports business moves in and the sports business owners act as if they are the real owners of the stadium. If the sports business owners wish for any improvement or addition to the stadiums, the taxpayers pick up the tab. The local governments should be in control of the stadiums.

    At least these sports owners should be leasing the Florida citizen’s stadium property from the State of Florida and/or local governments. The leasing money should be divided per the ratio of tax-dollars provided by each state, county and city involved the construction of the stadium.

    The state, county, and city property taxpayers should have money returns or the sports business should not be able to ‘Black Out’ the games shown by the local area media for any reason what so ever.

    Almost every professional sports, football and base ball, stadium in Florida has been financed by all the citizen taxpayers of Florida with state tax dollars.

    Only the local citizens of the stadium’s location are allowed to vote for or against in an referendum, but state, county and/or city Tax-Dollars are used to build the stadium(s).

    Every Florida Taxpaying Citizen should be able to vote on each and every stadium built with state tax-dollars in Florida by a state referendum.

  2. To Add:

    All contracts should be honored to the term date.