Friday roundup: Bad spring training math, Beckham’s curse, and the opening of Megatron’s Butthole

No time for quips today, just the news:

  • A study by Arizona State University found that spring-training baseball was worth $373 million to the Arizona economy in 2018. I can’t find the actual report itself, but it looks like they came up with this number by interviewing a sample of out-of-town visitors at spring training games about how much they were spending on their trips — which would be a perfectly good methodology if not for the fact that lots of people travel to Arizona and then think “I’ll go see a baseball game while I’m there,” instead of traveling there just for baseball and thinking, “Sure, I’ll check out that big canyon, too.” Which is why when spring-training games have been canceled for labor conflicts, the observed impact on local economies has been pretty much zero. I wonder if the people who wrote this Arizona State report are actual economists, at least.
  • Nashville is getting an MLS franchise because it promised to build a soccer stadium, but it still might change its mind and not build a soccer stadium, and this is going to be great fun to watch if it does. (Not if you’re a Nashville MLS fan, I guess. But [insert requisite jibe about anything being more fun to watch than MLS soccer].)
  • MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said last week that he hopes MLB expands by two more teams during his lifetime (or during his tenure as commissioner — he wasn’t exactly clear), specifically mentioning “Portland, Las Vegas, Charlotte, Nashville in the United States, certainly Montreal, maybe Vancouver, in Canada. We think there’s places in Mexico we could go over the long haul.” That got people in those cities all excited, which is presumably the point in saying such things — of course, none of those cities have MLB-ready stadiums (unless you count Olympic Stadium in Montreal), so prepare for a stadium arms race sometime before Manfred dies.
  • Megatron’s Butthole is now fully operational.
  • The estimated cost of renovating Key Arena has risen from $600 million to $700 million, but the city won’t have to pay any of that because their deal with the developers says those guys have to pay any cost overruns. Kids, when signing your next arena deal, do that.
  • A Florida man was arrested for setting fire to golf carts at the golf course where David Beckham wants to build his soccer stadium, but police say it was just arson and has nothing to do with the stadium proposal. Except insomuch as David Beckham is cursed, okay? If construction on this place ever begins, I fully expect it to be interrupted by all its milk cows going dry.

4 comments on “Friday roundup: Bad spring training math, Beckham’s curse, and the opening of Megatron’s Butthole

  1. Nashville: Ok here’s a phrase here:
    Watching paint dry is more exciting than MLS.
    Beckham: thoroughly expecting a plague of locusts any time now

  2. The Milwaukee Bucks signed a 25 year naming rights deal with Fiserv to name the new arena the Fiserv Forum.
    https://www.jsonline.com/story/sports/nba/bucks/2018/07/27/fans-take-humorous-jabs-new-bucks-arenas-fiserv-forum-name/847189002/

  3. Not sports, but it was the Seattle Partners group that AEG created to bid on the KeyArena renovation (but pulled out with a protest of “this process is rigged by the city”). As Seattle Partners didn’t win that bid (and AEG Live had the contract for running the old KeyArena), it seems like they might be getting out of Seattle en masse considering a historic Seattle music venue, the Showbox, has redevelopment plans as a 44 story tower. AEG Live has run the Showbox for a decade.

    www.king5.com/article/news/local/seattle/seattles-longtime-showbox-could-be-demolished-for-high-rise/281-577496137

  4. “He hopes MLB expands by two more teams during his lifetime (or during his tenure as commissioner.” Hope in one hand and and shart in the other and see which hand fills first. The Montrealean’s better have large hands. LOL!