Thursday, August 15, 2013

Hagan Gets Stadium Analysis Out of Left Field

Hillsborough Commission Chairman Ken Hagan has always driven the "Move-the-Rays-to-Tampa" train, but responding Thursday to MLB Commissioner Bud Selig's "intervention" comments, Hagan merely helped the Rays further escalate the Stadium Saga rhetoric:

"It reaffirms what Mr. (Stuart) Sternberg stated during his (Hillsborough) County Commission presentation in January and it is a reflection of what I've stated for over three years," Hagan told the Tampa Bay Times. "There exists a sense of urgency to resolve this issue. The sense of urgency is real. It's borderline dire."

Things can't be too dire: the Rays have a secure home for 14 more years if nothing else happens.  The team consistantly pulls in some of the top profits in baseball, the franchise's value has more than tripled under Sternberg, and MLB's national television revenue is explodingRelocation is not possible anytime soon, and contraction will never be an option.

I'm sure the Rays would love to increase attendance by a few thousand people a night and it will take many years of work to actually get a new stadium open.  But there is nothing dire about the Stadium Saga and there is no reason to move so fast as to ignore the important financial questions that need to be asked.


  1. "Analysis" isn't re-repeating the same old sales-pitch! It's part of his job in the matter, just like the same old re-reporting that's done by this blog...
    And, "dire" doesn't have to be actually "dire", but more of an urgency to start making the amount of money possible! I mean, let's not be blinded by the fact that even if everything was OK'd today that it would still be 2018 or 19 until we play ball @ the new park, so in essences YES it is to get the ball rolling...
    And I know you don't want to admit it because it defeats your belief, but again, it's not so much about the increase of attendance (which could be 10k-15k more by 2030) then it is about bringing in more revenue in it's luxury boxes. More quality then quantity...
    Man, am I the only one that gets it???

  2. Here's the thing about relocation. There aren't any places that are better than Tampa Bay for the team to move (except maybe NJ, but that won't happen). But there are plenty of places that will draw just as poorly as Tampa Bay does right now. Portland, Austin/San Antonio, Charlotte, Montreal. None of these places are a better bet to be more successful than the Tampa area. But if one of these cities is essentially willing to build the team a ballpark it might be just enough to lure them away. I mean, can they really be expected to draw less than what the Rays are now? Not that I expect this to happen, this is all posturing to get Tampa to pay as much as possible towards a new stadium.

    And Noah, please stop thinking the Rays are going to have to pay St Pete a huge win fall to break the usage contract. You keep on implying the stadium was built for the Rays. It wasn't. So I don't see why the Rays would care about helping St. Pete payoff a stadium, that was sitting empty or hosting hockey games before the Rays came along. Only the provisions of the Rays usage contract would the team potentially have to pay St. Pete back for. 70 million dollars worth of upgrades and infrastructure improvement. By the time the Rays get a new stadium together 2020 if they're lucky, the Rays will have honored 75% of the usage contract. So if the city of St. Pete is lucky we're talking $17.5 million.