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Tampa Bay Rays: Escape from the Trop


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17 hours ago, Magic Dynasty said:

The interest is definitely there. The Rays consistently get high TV ratings, and I always see a bunch of people with Rays shirts or hats on.

 

I'd say it's a mix of terrible location, terrible stadium in general, and (for most of their history) terrible team. Many still think of the Rays as a bottom of the table team, one not worth paying as much as they charge to see - even in seasons like this, where they aren't bad.

 

Eh, they've been pretty consistently good for the last 11 years.

 

Hmm.  Now that I look up the numbers I guess before last year, they did have a 4 year run of roughly .500 baseball.  But of the remaining 7 years, 6 of them were 90 wins or more, and the one that wasn't was 84 wins.

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19 hours ago, AstroBull21 said:

Press conference Tuesday the 25th at 1pm eastern about the Rays.  Assumingly to clear the air about this Montreal stuff.

"We're not doing the Montreal thing." End of press conference.

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14 minutes ago, Gothamite said:

As is this.

 

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To be fair, the Tampa Bay Times is behind a paywall now (as of a few months ago) after a few articles, so alot of locals have given up on their sites unless they're a subscriber already.

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26 minutes ago, AstroBull21 said:

To be fair, the Tampa Bay Times is behind a paywall now (as of a few months ago) after a few articles, so alot of locals have given up on their sites unless they're a subscriber already.

 

Maybe.  But that’s from their YouTube feed, which is free. 

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Quote

One reporter asked what Sternberg thought about the fans in the Tampa Bay area who would want the team all to their own. "All to their own just isn't gonna be an option going forward," Sternberg replied.

 

“I don't see it happening in St. Petersburg and would be hard-pressed to see it working in Tampa as well given what I know," Sternberg said.

 

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Highlights from the press conference:

 

Basically they haven't talked to either city, they don't have financing, they don't have a name, they want two new open air ballparks from two cities when they can't get money from one for a single park, but Manfred and the owners gave them permission to explore this.

 

He seemed pretty adamant that there's no 'plan B' of keeping the team in Tampa for a full season - not in St. Pete, not in Ybor, or Tampa Bay.

 

He said a renovation/expansion of "Al Lang Stadium" is a possibility for the new Tampa park.

 

He claims it won't be a prolonged exit from Tampa, but I just don't see this working or being a viable thing.

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18 minutes ago, rmc523 said:

He said a renovation/expansion of "Al Lang Stadium" is a possibility for the new Tampa park.

 

I'm the furthest thing from an expert on this, but I don't think that would work as a major league park, unless they're going to spend the money (probably at least 200-300 million) to only play there for 5 years because they're contractually obligated. The stadium only seats around 7,500 and is situated between 2 large roads and a concert hall. Even if they were to expand it, I can't see them being able to fit more than 20,000 seats there, which is well below MLB standards.

 

EDIT: Even after looking at renovation photos I'm still skeptical of this move. Considering those renovations are soccer, those are going to be some crappy sightlines. Like Exhibition Stadium outfield level bad.

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8 minutes ago, Survival79 said:

 

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That looks like a "roofed" concept.

 

7 minutes ago, chrysleraspen08 said:

 

I'm the furthest thing from an expert on this, but I don't think that would work as a major league park, unless they're going to spend the money (probably at least 200-300 million) to only play there for 5 years because they're contractually obligated. The stadium only seats around 7,500 and is situated between 2 large roads and a concert hall. Even if they were to expand it, I can't see them being able to fit more than 20,000 seats there, which is well below MLB standards.

 

I agree.  I looked it up on maps, and I don't see how they even can expand it.  He talked about 30,000 fans watching the team, I don't see how that's possible short of closing off streets, and even then it seems iffy at best.

 

 

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The idea that this ISN'T a negotiating tactic ("build us a park or else") is crazy.  Not to mention, the league/owners would miss out on an expansion team fee in a "new" city.

 

I also didn't understand his timeline.  He was saying ideally this would be set up for 2024, but then said they have the lease through 2027 at the Trop, and they're committed to that too, which would mean either they're paying to not play in the Trop, or it's just a 2027 lease for St. Pete the city, not the Trop specifically?

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The three Tampa major league teams:

 

The Bucs: We hope that Bruce Arians can revive Jameis Winston

Lightning: We hope we can make it farther in the Stanley Cup Playoffs next season

Rays: We will split the season between Tampa and Montreal, so we better start learning Quebec French.  

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  • LMU changed the title to Tampa Bay Rays: Escape from the Trop

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