Rumor: MLB announcement about return to Montreal coming soon.

TonyZi

Thug’s Manchin
it’s not like they’re attracting big name free-agents anyways. players they can no longer afford, move on.
 

robardin

Older East Asian dude seeing both sides
How the fuck can you ask your players to split a season between two cities?
Even better: what if the Rays win the World Series in 2021?

Bad enough that it could well be "only" the defending AL Pennant winner two years in a row...

How does the defending World Series Champion split a season between two cities?

Of course, as our forefathers might still begrudge, the Brooklyn Dodgers won the NL Pennant in 1952 and 1953, then 1955 World Series, won the NL again in 1956, and then moved to LA after 1957, so pffft.
 

MetManiac22

Veteran Refugee
None of this makes any sense to me. I could understand for a few games here or there but a half season? Seems like they are better off breaking the lease and hitching their wagon up and leaving. What benefit do they get from splitting a season between two cities?

Unless this is just a ploy for the owners to force the city of St. Petersburg to ante up and help out with a stadium situation. How that team, even in it's crap years, was able to even exist in that tomb of a ballpark for years is criminal. I'm assuming many plans were drawn up and presented but only to be shot down, I bet.
 

TonyZi

Thug’s Manchin
i really think somebody could make a buck starting up a ferry service down there. too many logistics excuses.
 

robardin

Older East Asian dude seeing both sides
None of this makes any sense to me. I could understand for a few games here or there but a half season? Seems like they are better off breaking the lease and hitching their wagon up and leaving. What benefit do they get from splitting a season between two cities?

Unless this is just a ploy for the owners to force the city of St. Petersburg to ante up and help out with a stadium situation. How that team, even in it's crap years, was able to even exist in that tomb of a ballpark for years is criminal. I'm assuming many plans were drawn up and presented but only to be shot down, I bet.
And after the white elephant debacle that appears to be Marlins Park, why should St. Petersburg follow suit?

The Marlins saw a one-time jump in fan attendance for the inaugural season of the ballpark that still amounted to under 2.3M fans - an average of around 28,000 per home game

They've never come close to that kind of attendance since, basically it's the same average attendance as when they were in Joe Robbie / Pro Player / Sun Life / whatever the hell they kept renaming that multi-purpose facility with the Dolphins.

The Rays have drawn from around 1.5M to 1.8M when they're in contention, is there any reason to think that's because of the ballpark venue or location such that a much, much more expensive (and taxpayer funded) one would draw better?
 

JPSchmack

HOF'er Who Needs To Retire
Administrator
And after the white elephant debacle that appears to be Marlins Park, why should St. Petersburg follow suit?

The Marlins saw a one-time jump in fan attendance for the inaugural season of the ballpark that still amounted to under 2.3M fans - an average of around 28,000 per home game

They've never come close to that kind of attendance since, basically it's the same average attendance as when they were in Joe Robbie / Pro Player / Sun Life / whatever the hell they kept renaming that multi-purpose facility with the Dolphins.

The Rays have drawn from around 1.5M to 1.8M when they're in contention, is there any reason to think that's because of the ballpark venue or location such that a much, much more expensive (and taxpayer funded) one would draw better?
Well, 1), the Marlins team sucks and Tampa's team is great' and the Marlins have this habit of pissing off their fan base buy holding firesales and finishing 4th or 5th. Tampa ALSO trades everyone the second they need to get paid, but they'd always done it way that makes their team better.

2) Yes, there IS a reason to think it's because of the ballpark and location. I'm not saying they're suddenly going to be selling 3 million tickets with a new crib, because I think the location issue is unsolvable. But the ballpark IS a huge part of the reason why no one is going to fight traffic to commute two hours on a weekday to go see the team in Tampa if they live in St. Pete, or St. Pete if they live in Tampa.


I used to live 55 miles from downtown Cincy. But it was an easy 55. When the Mets would come to town, I'd ask all my friends if anyone wanted to go to the game with me. It was HARD to get people to go to Riverfront Stadium, but when Great American SmallPark opened, it wasn't hard at all.

I used to live 1:45 from Oakland and 2 hours from San Francisco. "Want to go to a Giants game?" vs "Want to go to an A's game?" is totally different. The A's have a giant parking lot with tailgating and ease to get into. The Giants, you walk like a mile and a half from the BART stop to get to the ballpark.... and even still, no one wanted to go to A's games -- when the A's were a better team than the Giants. I got asked to an A's game by a Twins fan, and we talked her into going to see the Twins in SAN DIEGO INSTEAD.

Ballpark matters a lot.
 

JPSchmack

HOF'er Who Needs To Retire
Administrator
Maybe they're using this as leverage to build a new stadium
Oh, totally. 100% they are.

The reason they're saying all kinds of crazy stuff about Montreal is because it's a staring contest. The Rays cannot ACTUALLY LEAVE until after the 2027 season. They're locked into the rest of the 30-year lease (Signing a 30-year lease on a ballpark that was antiquated BEFORE the team existed was crazy.)

But there's no reason for a politician to move on a stadium deal now, because the all have to get re-elected before the Rays' lease is up. Last thing they'd want is an opponent to slam them for stadium handouts to billionaire owners.

The Rays are faking like they are out the door to try and get politicians to bite on a stadium SOON because if they get a deal done, they can start making good revenue as soon as construction is complete. Deal tomorrow = $$$$ in 2025.

A last-minute stadium deal to keep the Rays in the TB market, starts construction in 2028, finishes in 2030 and they can move in and get revenue from it in 2031.
 

JPSchmack

HOF'er Who Needs To Retire
Administrator
so; you are saying the Rays will not be moving to Montreal?
It's entirely possible they DO move to Montreal.... in the event that neither Tampa Bay, nor St. Pete, will build them a stadium. Or they just simply decide "Montreal would be better!"

While a new stadium would help them A LOT, there's still the horrible geography of the market that's always going to be a factor. The Tampa-St. Pete market is shaped like a C. You can't put a stadium "closest to the bigger side, but still in the middle" because the middle is water. It's always going to limit their attendance on weekdays. Having a nice stadium can off-set that when people WANT to go to a gorgeous stadium to watch good baseball....

... but I don't see how that can compete with a city like Montreal. The biggest downside of a move to Montreal is you need a very rich owner in Montreal to off-set the exchange rate and to tackle the politics of getting a stadium done THERE. MLB might be too rich for a potential owners' blood in Montreal. So having Tampa Bay's owners and Montreal's potential owner team up to own the Expos in Montreal, while a new replacement team in Tampa is launched when they build a new stadium could be the answer.
 

rcfilm24

Veteran Refugee
My nephew is going to be sad if that happens.

He's one of those 40-50 die-hard Tampa Rays fan.


Maybe I can turn him over to the dark side and make him a Mets fan if they do it.

Rob
 

JPSchmack

HOF'er Who Needs To Retire
Administrator
He's one of those 40-50 die-hard Tampa Rays fan.
If you look at their TV ratings, the fan base exists.

I totally get their problem, because I'm in the PHX area, and the Arizona Coyotes have a very similar situation. If the Islanders play at Arizona on a weekday, then I have to take time off from work to get to the game.
 
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