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April 03, 2011

Sternberg, Foster celebrate Opening Day with Rays stadium taunts

Friday was Opening Day in Tampa Bay, and Rays owner Stuart Sternberg was at it yet again with his you-don't-wanna-make-baseball-mad shtick, this time asserting that Bud Selig is running out of patience for a new stadium:

"It's imperative that we get this thing moving," Sternberg said. "The can has been kicked down the road and the road is not much longer ... But there needs to be some progress. ... And I think my patience is greater than Major League Baseball's."

Yes, the same Bud Selig whose Oakland A's stadium commission just celebrated its two-year anniversary without any signs of issuing a report. That guy just can't wait for anything! So don't try it, St. Petersburg!

St. Pete Mayor Bill Foster, to his credit, brushed off Sternberg's threats, saying "the city is prepared for interference from Major League Baseball and all of the Selig tricks that have been used successfully elsewhere." (It's easy to be cocky when you're sitting on an ironclad lease.) Though Foster went on to insist that Tropicana Field is a "beautiful facility" and that "I call the [catwalk] rings Wrigley's Ivy" — there's cocky, and then there's too cocky.

COMMENTS

...yeah, but, there are just so many cities across this country crying out for major league baseball franchises to relocate... I mean theres... and, err....

If I remember correctly, a Forbes study indicated that there was just one US market that didn't presently have MLB that could support it: New Jersey. (We'll ignore, for the moment, the list of places that do have MLB that Forbes believes cannot support it).

"Mr. Sternberg, Mr. Steinbrenner on line one..."

Now, Neil, that is one territorial rights check I would pay actual money just to see!

Posted by John Bladen on April 4, 2011 02:25 AM

San Jose can also support a team if only Bud Selig would let them. So much for the free market.

Posted by A's Fan on April 4, 2011 03:59 AM

Western New York boasts the highest attendance for AAA baseball in the nation every year and a beautiful expansion ready stadium nestled into Downtown Buffalo. We will happily sell out every home game of the Buffalo Rays season. We pack it in for a crappy Bills team in good and bad weather. It will also ease inter division travel for Boston, NYY, Toronto and Baltimore.

Sorry Tampa Bay. You're pathetic for not supporting a team that has been so exciting and successful on the measly salary youve starved them into.

I wish you no luck as your fan base has proven you don't deserve it.

Posted by RDB on April 5, 2011 01:14 AM

@ RDB, yeah, your "fan-base" is so great, you'll be losing your beloved Bills to Toronto pretty soon. A couple things that you may not realize, the first 9 years of this area having the
team, it was run into the ground by the prior owner. Prior to that, this area was used by baseball and at least 5 other cities to acquire new stadiums. Couple that with the fact that in the last 12 years, the taxpayers have built new stadiums for the Buccaneers and Lightning. Needless to say, people in this area are pretty tired of spoiled athletes and cry-baby owners that lie through their teeth to squeeze every penny out of the taxpayer. It's gonna take awhile torebuild the fan-base, especially when our employment rate is one of the lowest in the country. Furthermore, I don't know if you watch much baseball on TV, but ST. Louis didn't even sell out on opening day. Last night during the Twins-Yankees game, the "Brand New" stadium of the Yankees was only about 40% of capacity. So for you to say we don't "deserve" a team it doesn't really make sense? What does that mean anyway? Deserve a team? It's all game to the owners and athletes, it seems like you have bought in to the big lie. Fyi, don't count on Buffalo ever getting an MLB team. Not happening. I know it's a "beautiful" place to live and all.

Posted by Wade on April 5, 2011 09:22 AM

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