Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Jays/Astros Palm Beach Ballpark Off; Clubs Go Scrambling for Subsidies

After plans fell apart for a new Blue Jays/Astros spring training stadium in Palm Beach Gardens, the Astros are now reportedly teaming up with the Nationals for a possible stadium in Lake Worth, also in Palm Beach County:
The Astros had wanted to share a complex in Palm Beach Gardens with the Toronto Blue Jays, but the Blue Jays told Palm Beach County officials last week that the team is no longer looking in the county because they’ve decided to stay in Dunedin.

“Toronto is no longer a player in this anymore, said Palm Beach County commissioner Hal Valeche, who is spearheading the county’s efforts to attract more teams for spring training.

The collapse of the Palm Beach Gardens stadium plan led to the Nationals-Astros pair-up.
It might be a bit presumptuous to assume the Jays' disinterest in Palm Beach County is because they're staying in Dunedin.

While their current contract runs through 2017, it is probably only a matter of months (or less) before they publicly flirt with the developer who wants to bring spring training to Wesley Chapel, or Pinellas County leaders, who have indicated they could possibly expand Brighthouse Field in Clearwater.

UPDATE: The Tampa Bay Times later reported Dunedin is trying to find a way to keep the Jays long-term, while the Blue Jays say Palm Beach County has "no right to speak for us." {link to Times' site}

UPDATE 2: The Tampa Tribune followed that up Thursday with a story on how the "Blue Jays likely to stay in Dunedin," based on the Dunedin mayor saying he's "starting to get more signals" the team may stick around after 2017.  Realizing they jumped to an awfully big conclusion, the Trib later changed its headline online to "Blue Jays may stay in Dunedin."

No comments:

Post a Comment