I tend to leave minor-league stadium shenanigans for the Friday roundups, but it’s not every day that a local elected official declares that a stadium named for his own dad is obsolete and needs to be replaced in order to keep its team from leaving town:
When the San Antonio Missions start playing Triple-A baseball in 2019, it’s still unclear if Wolff Stadium will be the team’s long-term home.
“What I worry about is that after they’re here for a year and playing in a Double-A stadium, is when the ownership group comes back to the city and the county and says, ‘Hey, look, if we don’t get a Triple-A stadium, we are going to have to move,'” said Bexar County Precinct 3 Commissioner Kevin Wolff.
The stadium was named for Wolff’s father, County Judge Nelson Wolff.
Let’s back up for a second. Wolff Stadium was built all the way back in 1994 — that’s a different century! — and renovated in 2006, as part of a deal that saw the Double-A Missions take over operations of the ballpark. The county still owns it, though, so Kevin Wolff is presumably suggesting that the public should take on the cost of expanding or replacing the 9,200-seat facility to keep the team happy. (The team’s owners have already released a statement declaring the unthinkably 23-year-old stadium to be “not the long-term answer for Triple-A baseball in San Antonio.”)
Wolff indicated that Wolff Stadium needs an extra 1,000 seats to be considered Triple-A compliant, but that’s not exactly true: While 10,000 is the “recommended” minimum seating capacity, six stadiums in the Pacific Coast League hold fewer fans than San Antonio’s does currently.
In any event, San Antonio just got awarded Triple-A baseball in late June — after major-league teams decided that it was too hard to evaluate young players in the thin air of Colorado Springs — so you’d think two years before the team even moves in would be a bit early to start levying threats to relocate, but clearly not. Here’s hoping that Bexar County officials come back with “You’re welcome to pay for it yourself, and if not we’re fine with going back to Double-A ball,” or at the very least, “Quit saying mean things about the stadium named for my dad.”