It had been three whole days since anybody tried to throw out any ideas to resolve the Tampa Bay Rays stadium non-crisis, so thankfully on Friday the Tampa Bay Partnership stepped up to the plate to offer to broker talks between the team and Tampa Bay government agencies over the team’s future home.
“The city of St. Petersburg and Pinellas County played a pivotal role in bringing the Rays to Tampa Bay, and now our region must pull together in a collaborative, inclusive and transparent way to ensure that the Rays remain and prosper here,” wrote Partnership leaders Gary Sasso and Stuart Rogel.
So, what exactly is this group? It’s a public-private marketing, public planning, and lobbying group that’s led by local business leaders: Sasso runs a local corporate law firm, and Tampa Tribune publisher John Schueler is the group’s vice-chair. What they can contribute to the debate isn’t all that clear — St. Petersburg Mayor Bill Foster says he’ll only talk about plans that keep the Rays in his city, and team officials wouldn’t comment at all — but hey, at least they got their name on the telly.