Saturday, May 25, 2013

Buckhorn Throws Out First Pitch, Some Stadium Optimism

“I get a sense that, perhaps over the summer, there may be some movement,” Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn told the Tampa Bay Times Friday night. “I don’t know what it’ll be. But I think everyone recognizes that the status quo is not an answer.”

The mayor was throwing out the first pitch at Tropicana Field for a second time in three seasons, while St. Petersburg Mayor Bill Foster, who has to run for re-election this year and has butted heads with the Rays' brass, has thown out zero first pitches.

The Times continues:
Buckhorn made it clear he’s not going to “get in the middle,” saying he respects the position St. Petersburg Mayor Bill Foster is in and how much of an investment the citizens of St. Petersburg have made to the facility. Foster has said they’ve been trying to find a “middle ground” with the Rays, who have a lease at the Trop until 2027 but want to explore potential stadium sites outside of the city. Buckhorn said there “needs to be options because this is not going until 2027. It’s just not.”
“We don’t want to lose them,” Buckhorn said. “This is our team. This isn’t Charlotte’s team, this is not Las Vegas’ team, and this team deserves the best efforts to find a way to make sure that they stay.”
Fortunately, Charlotte just gave all of its available cash to the Panthers and Vegas will never get a major-league venue built.

But that, of course, just means that there's no rush for progress in Tampa Bay.  Which isn't a good thing if you're as frustrated as Buckhorn with the Stadium Saga.

1 comment:

  1. Did anyone else consider Mayor Buckhorn's Tweet following that game to be a bit of a slam against the very team that he is hoping will move to his city?