Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Three Bonus Opinions on the Rays' Stadium Saga

If reading about the Rays' end-of-season attendance numbers and commissioners waffling on campaign statements wasn't are three new opinions from the last 24 hours on the recent Rays' headlines:

Tampa Bay Times: End the destructive stadium standoff
No surprise, the Rays' cheerleaders-in-chief opined once again for St. Pete councilmember to concede on the MOU:
Unless the Rays can begin a regional search for a new ballpark soon, the County Commission says it may pledge critical resort tax dollars to a different project, a massive midcounty sports complex. That could gut the region's capacity to finance a new major-league stadium and forestall Tropicana Field redevelopment for a decade.
Actually, it wouldn't gut Hillsborough's bonding capacity...and isn't that where everyone wants the Rays to play anyway?  The editorial continues:
The pitfalls of St. Petersburg's foot-dragging on Major League Baseball have been foreseeable for years. The County Commission, which controls the resort tax, invested as much in the Trop as St. Petersburg did to attract a major-league team. The commission deserves the chance to help preserve that investment for a new generation of fans.

Field of Schemes: There is no stalemate
Love this paragraph from Neil deMause:
That word “stalemate” showed up in just about every news story on the Pinellas talks today, and it’s dead wrong: The St. Petersburg council isn’t stuck making a decision, people. Rays owner Stuart Sternberg has a lease that runs through 2027, and he asked to buy his way out of it, and the St. Pete council said, “No, thanks.” A stalemate implies an impasse toward a needed decision, but a decision’s been made here — Sternberg isn’t happy with it, but it’s done unless he chooses to make another offer.

Shadow of the Stadium: Rays refused deals that could've allowed Toytown talks
This link directs you to a quick comment I posted on this site that echoes deMause's sentiment - Sternberg and the Rays are able to look at sites in Pinellas. Maybe Pinellas Commissioners should redirect some of their frustrations to the profitable corporation that's refusing to talk because of a 2010 ultimatum they gave to the city of St. Pete?

A brief history of Times editorials on the Stadium Saga:
The history goes further back than that, but for a good synopsis, watch my 2010 piece on newspapers cheerleading for new stadium projects.

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  1. It's funny how everyone besides the Rays are, and have been for years, in a frenzy for info on the "Stadium Saga", including politicians, the media, and the people. The Rays aren't pushing the agenda nor boasting much about it. Why? Because it isn't nor has stopped them from doing what they need to do to set-up the plans of their move, and Channelside is still a few years away from being as ready for them. So while yinz get all indulged in every detail & report, the Rays will continue to work quietly behind the scenes, while living at the Trop for cheap...
    It's just like when teams calmly "tank" a few years for better draft picks to develop, while everyone else frets about every game lost, every year, until they make the playoffs, then it's all good, and it's like the tanking never happened, e.i. the Astros...

    1. "The Rays aren't pushing the agenda nor boasting much about it."

      Depending on how you qualify pushing. Sternberg interviews last winter is not what I qualify a quiet way of working behind the scene.

      And when Sternberg says publicly that he will not sit down ans wait until 2023 (knowing it will take at least 5 years from a MOU to a new stadium), there's not a lot of years ahead to tank and wait like the Astros.

      So I think the Astros ways of doing things in not applicable to Sternberg.

      Now that Manfred is in the driver seat, we will probably see some actions after the D7 election.

  2. Another council member want to propose a deal that he personally validated the feasibility with Rays senior vice president and general counsel John Higgins.

    Again, too many cooks in the kitchen.

    1. "Too many cooks" Pat, what's your address? I will mail you a book that describes the basics of representative democracy. If you don't like deliberative democracy, either don't ask government for hundred million dollar stadiums OR move to Sochi.