Thursday, May 15, 2014

Wow: Pirates Pay for (Almost) All of Spring Training Upgrades Themselves

The Bradenton Herald reports the Pittsburgh Pirates will pay for the overwhelming majority of a new $6.5 million improvement to their spring training home:
While other cities tend to get demands for Major League Baseball spring training facility improvements from the teams -- sometimes accompanied by threats of leaving the city -- the Pittsburgh Pirates continue to highlight their commitment to Bradenton with plans to invest another $6.5 million in McKechnie Field and Pirate City.

The Pirates plan calls for replacing the existing clubhouse and expanding the agility field at McKechnie Field, and building a new strength facility at Pirate City.

The city would invest $275,000 into the project from the public works budget.
Callahan praised the team's commitment to the community and charitable organizations, as well as working with the city's master plan vision to transform the area around McKechnie Field into an entertainment district.

"The Pirates are continuing to invest in Bradenton because of our long-standing relationship with the community and the vital, year-round training and rehabilitation assets that have been developed by our partnership with the city," Pirates President Frank Coonelly said in a news release. "Our Major League and Minor League players deserve first-class facilities and the new home clubhouse at McKechnie Field and performance center at Pirate City will be among the best in the industry."
The article mentions that the renovations will require an expansion into the city's solid waste yard.  However, it doesn't seem likely to impact the facility, or mean a land handout to the team.

So hopefully, its a win-win for all parties...and a lesson for other cities that feel they have to dip into reserves to satisfy an MLB team's demands.


  1. Well, it's probably money from years of revenue...

  2. Exactly, MLB rakes in billions, they can pay for their own stadiums many times over.