In a letter to the city, Rowdies officials describe Al Lang Stadium as “dilapidated” and complain that the St. Petersburg Baseball Commission, a nonprofit group that manages the stadium, is failing to maintain the venue as required in its contract.One interesting connection here is that the right-hand man to Rowdies owner Edwards is former St. Pete Mayor Rick Baker, who created the ABC Coalition in 2008 to explore a long-term solution to the Rays' stadium situation. If there's anybody who knows what St. Pete can - and will - do to make a pro team happy, it's these Baker & Edwards.
Complaints include mold in locker rooms, air-conditioning problems, weeds on the field, litter and debris in the dugouts and inadequate stadium lighting. Some 600 stadium seats are broken or “hazardous,” the letter states. Even the field mower is not working properly.
The letter, written by Rowdies attorney Wes Bailey, also hints that the team could move elsewhere if the commission and the city do not commit to stadium improvements.
Commission Director Steve Nadel said he was surprised at the aggressiveness of the letter. Other professional sports teams who recently used the stadium, including the Toronto Blue Jays, were happy with it, he said.
“The negative parts directed at us are false and untrue,” he said. “Other groups that have been there play at a higher professional level than the Rowdies.”
Tuesday, March 25, 2014
St. Pete Faces Stadium Complaints...From Rowdies
Christopher O’Donnell reports in this morning's Tampa Tribune the Tampa Bay Rowdies, who play their home games in Downtown St. Petersburg, aren't happy with the condition of Al Lang Stadium: