PDA

View Full Version : Contraction 2009 edition


Fenway
03-04-2009, 11:07 AM
With word coming out of Dade County that the Marlins stadium is all but dead the contraction word is being whispered again.

The Marlins situation is dicey as the Dolphins want them gone as a tenant, Oakland at least has Al Davis Stadium.

Contraction fell apart the last time mainly because the owner of the Expos Jeff Loria threatened to sue Selig and MLB over the issue and Selig then rigged the Red Sox sale to Marlins owner John Henry so Loria could get the Marlins.

Now what happens?

One of the biggest headaches about contraction is how on earth do you solve the problem with AAA and AA minor league franchises.
Then you have the PA screaming over 50 lost jobs (actually 80 when you consider the 40 man roster)

I suspect Oakland will most likely wind up in San Jose but what on earh do you do with the Marlins? Even Montreal is not an option for them as long as Loria and Samson are involved as they are as hated in Quebec as Art Modell is in Ohio. I can see the Marlins looking at The Meadowlands as their best and perhaps only option.

This has to be resolved quickly as the Marlins are simply running out of time.

areilly
03-04-2009, 11:34 AM
I'm not as familiar with the issue as some others so I'll ask.

When it actually happens, how far in advance is contraction or relocation usually announced? Beginning of the final season in a city? A few years in advance? Just before the end of the lease on the stadium?

IspepAloc
03-04-2009, 11:46 AM
I know it would be tough to convince MLB to do this, but I really think Las Vegas should be a viable candidate. They could move them to the AL West evening up both leagues at 15 teams each.

doublem23
03-04-2009, 11:48 AM
I know it would be tough to convince MLB to do this, but I really think Las Vegas should be a viable candidate. They could move them to the AL West evening up both leagues at 15 teams each.

Odd number of teams = Interleague all year round = Sucks

jabrch
03-04-2009, 11:59 AM
I'd love to see the player disbursement draft. What a huge windfall to some team - Lookie here...Hanley Ramirez!

Luke
03-04-2009, 12:00 PM
I know it would be tough to convince MLB to do this, but I really think Las Vegas should be a viable candidate. They could move them to the AL West evening up both leagues at 15 teams each.

I posted this in the Cisco Field thread, but it looks like Vegas has no interest in landing a team right now.

http://www.ballparkdigest.com/features/index.html?article_id=1054

Vegas is just not happening.

The Dolphins are basically kicking the Marlins out at the end of the lease in 2010, which might be extended if an agreement for a baseball only stadium was in place at that time.

It's a pretty complicate mess. No matter how viable a city, virtually no one wants to spend $600 million + to build a stadium right now. As Miami is learning, the actual cost, once the bonds are paid, is probably well over One Billion.

I think the MLBPA could maybe be convinced to go along with contraction, but the owners would have to make some big concessions, which I wouldn't count on.

MushMouth
03-04-2009, 12:29 PM
maybe a minor league city that can expand a minor-league stadium?

Portland, Indy, Buffalo, somewhere in texas?

beasly213
03-04-2009, 12:32 PM
Bring them to Chicago. This city could use a real second profesional baseball team.

:cool:

bestkosher
03-04-2009, 12:41 PM
While i think a health bit of contraction would do baseball good. It will not happen because of the greed of the owners. I would also like to see the system they use in Soccer where the least team is relegated but that ain't happening. Although it would be fun to the see the cubs relegated to the minors for a year. What I could see happening is as mentioned earlier a minor league town being expanded. I am thinking down south like a shared North/South Carolina team or Nashville.

Iwritecode
03-04-2009, 12:46 PM
Odd number of teams = Interleague all year round = Sucks

Why? I think it would be interesting to see more NL teams play at the Cell or the Sox play at in more NL parks throughout the year rather than just three or four series in May and June.

Fenway
03-04-2009, 12:48 PM
maybe a minor league city that can expand a minor-league stadium?

Portland, Indy, Buffalo, somewhere in texas?

Portland is having problems building a AAA park

Indy too close to the Reds

Buffalo? Metro has shrunk 50% in 35 years ( now the size of Providence )

Connecticut? A team in the Stamford-Bridgeport-New Haven-Hartford corridor..maybe

Montreal has a stadium that can be used now with a new one planned ( and lots of people)

Charlotte? with banking industry in the tank they are having problems supporting the NBA again

ChiSoxFan81
03-04-2009, 12:50 PM
Why? I think it would be interesting to see more NL teams play at the Cell or the Sox play at in more NL parks throughout the year rather than just three or four series in May and June.

You could kiss the DH goodbye if that happened (although maybe you are in support of that idea).

mrfourni
03-04-2009, 01:00 PM
You could kiss the DH goodbye if that happened (although maybe you are in support of that idea).

Why? I don't think the union would allow that. If anything, I would think the DH gets expanded to the NL

doublem23
03-04-2009, 01:00 PM
Why? I think it would be interesting to see more NL teams play at the Cell or the Sox play at in more NL parks throughout the year rather than just three or four series in May and June.

Just my opinion. I wouldn't mind if they did away with interleague entirely.

Luke
03-04-2009, 01:46 PM
While i think a health bit of contraction would do baseball good. It will not happen because of the greed of the owners. I would also like to see the system they use in Soccer where the least team is relegated but that ain't happening. Although it would be fun to the see the cubs relegated to the minors for a year. What I could see happening is as mentioned earlier a minor league town being expanded. I am thinking down south like a shared North/South Carolina team or Nashville.

It was owner greed that drove the first efforts at contraction. I don't speak for the owners, but I don't see them having a problem contracting a team, and then turning around and selling the next franchise rights to someone that can get a stadium built.

AZChiSoxFan
03-04-2009, 01:55 PM
Portland is having problems building a AAA park

Indy too close to the Reds

Buffalo? Metro has shrunk 50% in 35 years ( now the size of Providence )

Connecticut? A team in the Stamford-Bridgeport-New Haven-Hartford corridor..maybe

Montreal has a stadium that can be used now with a new one planned ( and lots of people)

Charlotte? with banking industry in the tank they are having problems supporting the NBA again

Can you expound on the Portland issue. I thought they already have a AAA stadium?

Regarding STamford/b-port/new haven, does that territory belong to the Yanks and Mets? I mean, would they have to be paid off to allow a team there?

Daver
03-04-2009, 01:58 PM
Can you expound on the Portland issue. I thought they already have a AAA stadium?

Regarding STamford/b-port/new haven, does that territory belong to the Yanks and Mets? I mean, would they have to be paid off to allow a team there?

Nobody has to get paid if Bud Selig declares the move is in the best interest of MLB.

Luke
03-04-2009, 02:25 PM
Can you expound on the Portland issue. I thought they already have a AAA stadium?



The Beavers (AAA PAc Coast League) share a stadium (PGE Park) with Portland State football and pro soccer team, it's a cool old stadium, but the team wants a baseball only facility.

It was renovated a few years back for lots of money, but like most dual purpose stadiums, it's just not that great for baseball.

FloridaTigers
03-04-2009, 02:25 PM
Contract Marlins and A's. Move the Brewers back to the AL.

Fenway
03-04-2009, 02:26 PM
more on Marlins stadium mess

http://blogs.trb.com/sports/custom/business/blog/2009/03/marlins_stadium_update_no_666.html


http://www.miamiherald.com/news/breaking-news/story/932178.html

http://media.miamiherald.com/smedia/2009/03/04/05/773-Marlins4.embedded.prod_affiliate.56.JPG

Frater Perdurabo
03-04-2009, 02:34 PM
I don't see a viable option in Texas.

San Antonio itself is a huge city - over 1 million people by itself - but doesn't have as many suburbs as other big metro areas. (The city has an aggressive annexation policy - they annex large swaths of land long before they are ever developed.) The San Antonio metro area has about 1.9 million total people and is the #28 market according 2007 population estimates.

Austin is bustling at the seams, with a metro area population of about 1.6 million according to 2007 estimates, but that only puts it as the #37 market.

Put another way, San Antonio would only be larger than the Milwaukee (#38) and Kansas City (#29) metro areas. Sacramento and Orlando markets are bigger than San Antonio.

Once Austin and San Antonio grow more, I could see those two considered one market. With enough growth in the I-35 corridor (principally New Braunfels and San Marcos), and improved transportation options (more and better highways, high-speed rail, etc.), there might be a sufficiently large market to support an MLB team in Austin, as it could draw from as far north as Waco, and as far south as San Antonio.

San Antonio has more challenges. Although it's the largest city in the area, it is at the southern end of the region, poorer than Austin, and a "Spurs town." You'd have to build a truly special signature landmark stadium right on the Riverwalk. It would have to work architectually and in the context of the neighborhood: Mission/Alamo style architecture, with water taxis docking just beyond outfield wall. It would have to be small, quaint and intimate and take the best elements of AT&T, PNC, Fenway and Wrigley (and the Armor Park concept for the Sox), but also have some kind of retractable roof or at least a shade device. The park would have to be as much a draw as the team, because the franchise would need to rely heavily on tourists to go to games. But the stadium couldn't be too big or it would simply overwhelm the Riverwalk and Alamo neighborhoods. Therefore, with a seating capacity of no more than 30,000, it would need to have a near sell-out of lots of games, which is why the park would have to be the lure, because you can't count on the team being competitive all the time.

Frater Perdurabo
03-04-2009, 02:37 PM
New Jersey is the obvious solution. The New York metro area has 18.8 million people. If you could divide that market share three ways (and I know that fan loyalties don't work that way), each of the three thirds would only fall behind the LA and Chicago metro areas in total population.

Frankly, the New York area could support FOUR teams: put the A's in New Jersey (not far from their original home in Philly) and the Marlins in Connecticut.

Luke
03-04-2009, 02:39 PM
Nobody has to get paid if Bud Selig declares the move is in the best interest of MLB.

But if Bud were to do that he would risk incurring the wrath of the owner that had a team plopped down in his back yard, as well as any other owner that had a similar worry.

Hitmen77
03-04-2009, 02:47 PM
I hate to see Miami lose its team and I have thought that they could build a decent fan base if they built a urban, retractable roof, fan-friendly ballpark. But that being said, I don't mind the idea of Loria's plans for getting millions in taxpayer $$$ for a stadium go down in flames.

The A's have no where to go, but at least aren't being kicked out of their stadium. Good luck getting some govt body to pay for a $500 million stadium now when the economy is spiraling downward and many govt bodies are deep in debt. Many new parks have been relying on naming rights - good luck getting a naming rights deal today.

PKalltheway
03-04-2009, 02:49 PM
Yeesh, this is becoming quite a mess.

I have had the opportunity to go to Dolphin Stadium once. Once you have been there, it's pretty easy to see why nobody goes to Marlins games.

getonbckthr
03-04-2009, 03:05 PM
Nashville would work great in my opinion.

Daver
03-04-2009, 03:06 PM
MLB can't contract until 2011 at the earliest unless one of the teams files for bankruptcy.

DumpJerry
03-04-2009, 03:29 PM
New York City could support a third franchise. If their tickets are reasonably priced, it would give the locals an opportunity to see live MLB games since the Yankees are priced out of everyone's reach (dunno what the Mets' pricing is like).

beasly213
03-04-2009, 03:35 PM
New York City could support a third franchise. If their tickets are reasonably priced, it would give the locals an opportunity to see live MLB games since the Yankees are priced out of everyone's reach (dunno what the Mets' pricing is like).

That is a good call.

Fenway
03-04-2009, 03:37 PM
Yeesh, this is becoming quite a mess.

I have had the opportunity to go to Dolphin Stadium once. Once you have been there, it's pretty easy to see why nobody goes to Marlins games.

To make matters worse Dolphin Stadium is in one of the most humid parts of South Florida. It is brutal there in July and August.

John Henry knew 8 years ago that it would be impossible to build a stadium in South Florida unless it was private money. Joe Robbie had the same problem.

Keep in mind the fiasco that was the new Miami Arena in 1988. The Heat and Panthers both fled as soon as they could.

The minor league problem is a headache as well as what cities would lose AAA and AA teams???

Oakland's situation while not good is something they can muddle through. Miami the clock is at one minute to midnight now as they have to be out of Dolphins Stadium by 2011 unless ground is broken on a new park.

Maybe the solution is for MLB to front the stadium money to Loria and make him pay it back (same for Oakland) as taxpayer money will be almost impossible to pull off now.

TheOldRoman
03-04-2009, 07:35 PM
Someone (either Lip or Fenway) mentioned before that some believe Selig sent Loria in there as his goon to destroy baseball in Montreal so the team could be moved. Whether or not that is true, I don't think baseball will be back in Montreal any time soon. It is a shame too, because that is the perfect market. It would be the best destination for the Marlins if not for them being owned by Loria. Even if Bud wanted to move them to Montreal, he can't force Loria to sell the teams.

pmck003
03-04-2009, 08:00 PM
I've wondered if Omaha could support the Marlins better than Miami. I think they started building a new stadium for the AAA team and the College World Series that can hold about 35,000. The AAA team could move to Sioux Falls and the Marlins (or the Corns or whatever) would have a 10 game road trip every June.

Fenway
03-04-2009, 08:10 PM
Someone (either Lip or Fenway) mentioned before that some believe Selig sent Loria in there as his goon to destroy baseball in Montreal so the team could be moved. Whether or not that is true, I don't think baseball will be back in Montreal any time soon. It is a shame too, because that is the perfect market. It would be the best destination for the Marlins if not for them being owned by Loria. Even if Bud wanted to move them to Montreal, he can't force Loria to sell the teams.

It would be impossible to have Samson and Loria return to Montreal. The last home game Montreal ever played Samson was rubbing it in that Marlins won 9-0. I thought he was going to be killed in press box. That was an incredibly sad night for most of us there.

Daver
03-04-2009, 08:11 PM
Someone (either Lip or Fenway) mentioned before that some believe Selig sent Loria in there as his goon to destroy baseball in Montreal so the team could be moved.

I have huge doubts about the veracity of this statement.

Fenway
03-04-2009, 08:20 PM
I have huge doubts about the veracity of this statement.

I can put you in touch with quite a few media people in Montreal that are convinced that was indeed what happened.

Loria is actually a figurehead owner anyways as the family wealth comes from his wife. David Samson who is Loria's stepson seems to call most of the shots.

I am sure WSI members in South Florida have a few Samson stories they could share.

A. Cavatica
03-04-2009, 08:33 PM
Contract the Fins and the Twins.

Please.

ode to veeck
03-04-2009, 08:49 PM
Why not Portland? Anything to do with the AAA team doesn't have much bearing on an MLB team. How many AAA teams buils new stadiums when they already have one? You'd need at least a retractable roof for all the baseball months outside of August though (rains all the rest of the time).

Daver
03-04-2009, 08:51 PM
I can put you in touch with quite a few media people in Montreal that are convinced that was indeed what happened.

Loria is actually a figurehead owner anyways as the family wealth comes from his wife. David Samson who is Loria's stepson seems to call most of the shots.


I know the whole Loria story, including how he succesfully lied to the owners comittee for approval. There is also the fact that for all his faults, Bud Selig has always had the best interest of the owners at heart, and opening the league to out of country lawsuits that MLB ended up settling out of court does not seem to be in the owners best interest.

johnny bench
03-08-2009, 09:27 AM
If Carlos Slim can save the New York Times, why not save baseball too?

Beisbol en la Ciudad de Mexico anyone?

cards press box
03-08-2009, 10:58 AM
New Jersey is the obvious solution. The New York metro area has 18.8 million people. If you could divide that market share three ways (and I know that fan loyalties don't work that way), each of the three thirds would only fall behind the LA and Chicago metro areas in total population.

Frankly, the New York area could support FOUR teams: put the A's in New Jersey (not far from their original home in Philly) and the Marlins in Connecticut.

Absolutely right -- the New York metropolitan area is the most viable site for franchise relocation.

New York City could support a third franchise. If their tickets are reasonably priced, it would give the locals an opportunity to see live MLB games since the Yankees are priced out of everyone's reach (dunno what the Mets' pricing is like).

That is a good point. The long-term Yankees' spending spree has priced the Yankees out the range of the average New Yorker and has, to a lesser degree, driven up prices in other markets as well. Having said that, the recent economic downturn has led the every other franchise other than the Yankees to scale back.

One more question and observation -- isn't the Yankees' YES network on every cable system through New York state? I would imagine that is also the case in the New York metropolitan area. In this regard, YES gives the Yankees a ridiculously unfair advantage over other markets. Adding the A's and Marlins to the New York area would, over time, diminish this Yankee advantage as well.

Railsplitter
03-08-2009, 11:17 AM
If Carlos Slim can save the New York Times, why not save baseball too?

Beisbol en la Ciudad de Mexico anyone?

Why not? the high altitude should cause quite a few long balls.

BleacherBandit
03-08-2009, 11:25 AM
Why not? the high altitude should cause quite a few long balls.

Wouldn't Mexico City be too far away for most teams to fly to, economically and time-wise?


I like the idea, but it's too much of a fantasy.

getonbckthr
03-08-2009, 11:32 AM
Isn't Mexico a death trap right now?

Hitmen77
03-08-2009, 12:29 PM
Isn't Mexico a death trap right now?

...and where in the world would a MLB team in Mexico get enough money to be a viable franchise? Are there 2.5 million paying customers there able to pay an average of $20/ticket? What about TV revenue? Luxury suites? Corporate sponsors?

The problem for MLB is that there aren't that many viable new markets to support such a demand for a franchise.

I agree with others that, notwithstanding territorial rights, a 3rd team in the NY Metro area (northern New Jersey) is probably the best candidate for a franchise.

johnny bench
03-08-2009, 01:42 PM
Isn't Mexico a death trap right now?

And northern New Jersey is God's country?

johnny bench
03-08-2009, 01:47 PM
I agree with others that, notwithstanding territorial rights, a 3rd team in the NY Metro area (northern New Jersey) is probably the best candidate for a franchise.


Not a chance of that happening. The Yankees and Mets both have expensive new stadia and they can't move the inventory.

http://deadspin.com/5166130/yankees-mets-cowboys-picked-a-bad-time-to-fleece-their-fans

FloridaTigers
03-09-2009, 07:19 AM
As a life long Floridian, I can say why the Marlins failed:

1) Stadium location - Just horrible. No one wants to drive on a weekday in rush hour traffic on the turnpike for a 7:05 start on what has historically been a team of AAA'ers. Should've secured a new stadium in 1991 when the team was granted to Miami rather than depend on Dolphins Stadium.

2) People have been fans of teams for long before the Marlins. My grandfather and father were Tigers fans. I liked the Marlins when I was a kid, but I eventually gravitated to the team my family has been rooting on forever. People would much rather root for the team their parents root for, and down here its usually the Yankees, Mets, Cubs, or Cardinals.

3) Owners make no attempt to hold onto young fans. The Rays are smart by signing everyone long term, ensuring the same faces on the field for long to come. The Marlins have always traded fan favorites to save money. Sheffield, Beckett, Cabrera...its a never ending thing. You can't count on young fans if they break their heart trading everyone all the time. Regardless of the new extension, I'd bet Hanley is on another team by 2012.

Foulke You
03-09-2009, 12:43 PM
Would any of the other Canadian markets besides Montreal work for a Marlins move? I realize that Canada is a hockey country first and foremost but Toronto has built a decent fanbase. Edmonton, Vancouver, or Calgary perhaps?

I also think the New Jersey move would be a viable one. New York used to have three teams as recently as the 50s. (Brooklyn Dodgers, New York Giants, and the Yanks.) There are enough people to support it but as others have pointed out, the big hurdle would be clearing the flak that the Mets and Yankees ownerships would put up.

DSpivack
03-09-2009, 01:43 PM
Would any of the other Canadian markets besides Montreal work for a Marlins move? I realize that Canada is a hockey country first and foremost but Toronto has built a decent fanbase. Edmonton, Vancouver, or Calgary perhaps?

I also think the New Jersey move would be a viable one. New York used to have three teams as recently as the 50s. (Brooklyn Dodgers, New York Giants, and the Yanks.) There are enough people to support it but as others have pointed out, the big hurdle would be clearing the flak that the Mets and Yankees ownerships would put up.

Edmonton and Calgary are too small. Vancouver, who knows if there are enough baseball fans there. They couldn't support a basketball team.

Lip Man 1
03-09-2009, 01:56 PM
In fairness, Vancouver was a BAD, very bad basketball team. Hard to support that kind of losing...look at the Rays franchise.

Lip

Hokiesox
03-09-2009, 03:53 PM
...and where in the world would a MLB team in Mexico get enough money to be a viable franchise? Are there 2.5 million paying customers there able to pay an average of $20/ticket? What about TV revenue? Luxury suites? Corporate sponsors?

The problem for MLB is that there aren't that many viable new markets to support such a demand for a franchise.

I agree with others that, notwithstanding territorial rights, a 3rd team in the NY Metro area (northern New Jersey) is probably the best candidate for a franchise.

Mexico City is the 3rd or 4th largest city in the world. Aside from the extreme pollution and amazing traffic congestion, the city is rather like one of ours. There'd probably be enough people who can afford a ticket to go. It's just too far away. and REALLY hot in the summer.

Besides all that, they have all kinds of corporate sponsorship for the soccer league there. They also regularly sell those games out.

DSpivack
03-09-2009, 05:57 PM
Mexico City is the 3rd or 4th largest city in the world. Aside from the extreme pollution and amazing traffic congestion, the city is rather like one of ours. There'd probably be enough people who can afford a ticket to go. It's just too far away. and REALLY hot in the summer.

Besides all that, they have all kinds of corporate sponsorship for the soccer league there. They also regularly sell those games out.

Can't be any worse than Phoenix in the summer, could it? Although I imagine a large, retractable roof stadium in Mexico City might be prohibitively expensive. Not sure if they'd be able to get the same kind of broadcasting deals as other MLB teams, either. Also, Mexico City is at over 7,000 feet of elevation, so the air is even thinner than in Denver.

Railsplitter
03-10-2009, 04:11 PM
Wouldn't Mexico City be too far away for most teams to fly to, economically and time-wise?



L.A. and San Diego are closer to Mexico City than they are to Chicago, and Tampa is roughly the same distance from MexCity as it is from Boston (as the jumbo jet flies)

MtGrnwdSoxFan
03-11-2009, 03:55 AM
It seems like it's far away, but it really isn't.

Ciudad de Mexico, I think, could support an MLB team. Baseball is second to soccer in Mexico (in fairness, a distant second), but at least there's interest.

I would say move the Marlins to Ciudad de Mexico and put them in the AL West, and move the Pittsburgh Pirates from the NL Central to the NL East to take the Marlins' place. Then, do the "one interleague series every series" system of scheduling.

NL Central:

CHC
MIL
CIN
STL
HOU

NL East:

NYM
PHI
PIT
WAS
ATL

AL West:
LAA
OAK
CDM (or MC)
SEA
TEX

That would make sense to me.

Luke
03-11-2009, 10:33 AM
It seems like it's far away, but it really isn't.

Ciudad de Mexico, I think, could support an MLB team. Baseball is second to soccer in Mexico (in fairness, a distant second), but at least there's interest.

I would say move the Marlins to Ciudad de Mexico and put them in the AL West, and move the Pittsburgh Pirates from the NL Central to the NL East to take the Marlins' place. Then, do the "one interleague series every series" system of scheduling.



Mexico City obviously has the population. It's the biggest city in North America. It's economy is trickier though. There's a lot of money, but it's controlled by very few. While it may not be fair, the internal corruption and war among the drug cartels in Mexico does nothing for the perception.

If recent history is an indication, MLB does not like to be the first of the "Big Four" to go into a market. It's usually the toughest to support, and the other sports are a good litmus test as to whether or not a city's population and corporate sponsors will get behind a team.

The other catch is going to be the MLBPA. I would guess they would resist tooth and nail the ideas of players living in Mexico, getting paid in Pesos, and traveling to Mexico City-even if it is closer for some teams. Along these lines, I don't think it's realistic to put this team in the same division as Seattle, and expect no one to complain about travelling 5 hours just to get to a division rival.

Mexico City may someday host a franchise, but not in the near future.

MtGrnwdSoxFan
03-11-2009, 12:52 PM
Mexico City obviously has the population. It's the biggest city in North America. It's economy is trickier though. There's a lot of money, but it's controlled by very few. While it may not be fair, the internal corruption and war among the drug cartels in Mexico does nothing for the perception.

If recent history is an indication, MLB does not like to be the first of the "Big Four" to go into a market. It's usually the toughest to support, and the other sports are a good litmus test as to whether or not a city's population and corporate sponsors will get behind a team.

The other catch is going to be the MLBPA. I would guess they would resist tooth and nail the ideas of players living in Mexico, getting paid in Pesos, and traveling to Mexico City-even if it is closer for some teams. Along these lines, I don't think it's realistic to put this team in the same division as Seattle, and expect no one to complain about travelling 5 hours just to get to a division rival.

Mexico City may someday host a franchise, but not in the near future.

The economics are the only snafu that prevents this from being a reality.

I'm pretty sure that the MLBPA could work something out, and of the Big Four, baseball (IMO) would be the only sport that would have a chance of surviving. I don't see Mexico being a hot basketball, hockey, or football place.

As far as the traveling goes, maybe putting them in the NL West would be a little less extensive on the travel...but then, what do you do? Just keep the NL West as the new 6-team division (which will eliminate the need for interleague all season long)?

This is fantasy at this point, but it's not like it's a sheer impossibility.

johnny bench
03-12-2009, 08:28 PM
The other catch is going to be the MLBPA. I would guess they would resist tooth and nail the ideas of players living in Mexico, getting paid in Pesos,

Blue Jays players are paid in USD, and so would players for a Mexican team.

Luke
03-13-2009, 08:52 AM
Blue Jays players are paid in USD, and so would players for a Mexican team.

OK, that removes that roadblock, but then the team's payroll and finances become dependent on the relative strength of the Peso vs Dollar. Like the Blue Jays are with the Canadian Dollar.

WSox597
03-14-2009, 07:30 AM
Edmonton and Calgary are too small. Vancouver, who knows if there are enough baseball fans there. They couldn't support a basketball team.

Anybody know what the "critical mass" is to support a MLB team?

Milwaukee is a smaller city, and it supports the Brewers. I wonder what the minimum population would have to be to have a chance at a team.

scarsofthumper
03-14-2009, 07:59 AM
Vancouver could support a team, especially a NL team. It also gives another option to fans who live north of Seattle and are closer to there than Seattle. They could even use the soon to be renovated BC Place too. They have hosted exhibition games in the past.

Jerksticks
03-14-2009, 12:28 PM
I wish they'd have a true Southern Division. The rivalries would be phenomenal.

Tampa, Nashville, Charlotte, Atlanta, and I wish New Orleans, but they just don't have the population density. Jacksonville has a pretty big metro area, about the same as the Greenville, SC area. Birmingham is just too small; Same with Jackson, MS.

So:
Charlotte
Atlanta
Nashville
South Carolina
Tampa

That would be like cubs/cardinals every game.

downstairs
03-16-2009, 12:42 PM
Anybody know what the "critical mass" is to support a MLB team?

Milwaukee is a smaller city, and it supports the Brewers. I wonder what the minimum population would have to be to have a chance at a team.

Its different everywhere. Smaller cities require less critical mass (sometimes) because baseball would be one of only a few entertainment options.

scarsofthumper
03-16-2009, 12:58 PM
Here's my idea for a possible NL realignment (assuming an A's move stays on the west coast): Move the Marlins to Vancouver and become part of a 6 team NL West. Designate the Pittsburgh Pirates to the NL East and have a 5 team central and east. It would open up a more centralized NL East and Central and create 2 interleague rivalries (Toronto/Vancouver and Vancouver/Seattle). Also would let more East teams play in Pittsburgh and have a localized Central.

TDog
03-16-2009, 01:22 PM
Mexico City is the 3rd or 4th largest city in the world. Aside from the extreme pollution and amazing traffic congestion, the city is rather like one of ours. There'd probably be enough people who can afford a ticket to go. It's just too far away. and REALLY hot in the summer. ...

I've found Mexico City to be mild in the summer. It has a similar altitude to Flagstaff, Arizona, at over 7,000. During the 1968 Olympics, which I am old enough to remember, the problem was the thin air. Many athletes had trouble catching their breath, and some records records were brought into question. Bob Beamon, most notably, of course, shattered the world long jump record. That was more than four decades ago. I would hate to be an athlete in Mexico City today, all things considered. You might have the altitude of Colorado Springs, but you also have pollution worse than Los Angeles.

I lived on the Mexican border for 16 years. Although I've traveled to a lot of countries, including third-world countries, Mexico is the scariest country I've ever been in. Baseball is huge in Mexico, but the problems in the country only begin with corruption. Mexico is a problem baseball doesn't need, and things in Mexico appear to be getting worse.

Luke
03-16-2009, 01:38 PM
Its different everywhere. Smaller cities require less critical mass (sometimes) because baseball would be one of only a few entertainment options.

I agree. I think there's a cutoff point somewhere for sure, but it's hard to quantify where exactly that is, and what factors into that number. St. Louis has one of the smaller (but not the smallest) metro areas, but supports their team well. Oakland on the other hand, is in one of the largest markets in North America and struggles.

It looks like (depending how an area is defined) 1.7-2.0 million is about the smallest markets for baseball right now. That's not to say a smaller market couldn't support baseball.

SoxyStu
03-19-2009, 02:55 PM
Marlins are one step closer to getting a ballpark. City commission ok'd a deal (37k seater).