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LITTLE NELL
09-28-2010, 06:16 AM
In the Tampa Tribune this AM Evan Longoria is upset with Rays fans as only 12,000 showed up last night to watch a possible playoff clinching game.
It would not surprise me to see the Rays floundering at the bottom of the AL east within a couple of years as they won't be able to afford to sign players who have reached free agency. Carl Crawford will be the first to go.

http://www2.tbo.com/content/2010/sep/28/sp-longo-pops-off-at-sparse-trop-crowd/

soxfanatlanta
09-28-2010, 08:06 AM
In the Tampa Tribune this AM Evan Longoria is upset with Rays fans as only 12,000 showed up last night to watch a possible playoff clinching game.
It would not surprise me to see the Rays floundering at the bottom of the AL east within a couple of years as they won't be able to afford to sign players who have reached free agency. Carl Crawford will be the first to go.

http://www2.tbo.com/content/2010/sep/28/sp-longo-pops-off-at-sparse-trop-crowd/

What does he expect? He plays in a giant toilet bowel, in a town that's indifferent to baseball.

g0g0
09-28-2010, 08:37 AM
Carl Crawford to the Cubs in 2011. Cubs win WS while concurrently curing cancer and achieving world peace. There I said it.

Boondock Saint
09-28-2010, 08:39 AM
Carl Crawford to the Cubs in 2011. Cubs win WS while concurrently curing cancer and achieving world peace. There I said it.

Signing yet another $100m outfielder ought to cure what ails you. Maybe they can experiment with a defense consisting solely of outfielders.

gogosox675
09-28-2010, 09:18 AM
Signing yet another $100m outfielder ought to cure what ails you. Maybe they can experiment with a defense consisting solely of outfielders.

While they're at it, the Cubs can also bring back the college of coaches. :D:

SI1020
09-28-2010, 10:00 AM
What does he expect? He plays in a giant toilet bowel, in a town that's indifferent to baseball. You make a good point about the stadium, but I'm not sure about the area being indifferent to baseball, just indifferent to the Rays. Florida has one of the lowest percentage of residents born in the state they reside in. People still cling to their old allegiances.

hi im skot
09-28-2010, 10:10 AM
Longoria's not alone. From David Price's Twitter (http://twitter.com/DAVIDprice14):

Had a chance to clinch a post season spot tonight with about 10,000 fans in the stands....embarrassing

soxfanreggie
09-28-2010, 10:39 AM
What does he expect? He plays in a giant toilet bowel, in a town that's indifferent to baseball.

They're not indifferent to baseball, just Rays baseball. Yes, the stadium will be full for the playoffs, but you cannot expect coastal Florida areas to warm up to a team when a lot of people have moved from areas where they have been a fan of a team for 40, 50, 60+ years. That's why the east coast teams draw so well down there. The people I was sitting next to sell their Yankees and Red Sox tickets and pay for a huge part of their whole season package. There are definitely a lot of diehard fans, but it takes a while to grow a fan base. Their many years of sucking it up didn't help either.

While I'm down here, I have been to some Rays games but would not think of switching my allegiance.

As far as the stadium, I don't mind it because I'm more interested in the product on the field. However, I can see why some folks wouldn't like it. They do have a few positives: their new video board is quite nice, and free parking for any vehicle with 4 or more people in it (right next to the stadium) is also very nice.

Red Barchetta
09-28-2010, 10:39 AM
As transplanted local resident, I agree that the only "fans" that like the Trop are those who think they are part of a special club because they can walk up to the box office 30 minutes before game time and purchase a great lower box seat. The rest of us hate the place.

I also think the economic conditions have hit Florida harder than their divisional rivals Yankees and Red Sox.

I give the Rays ownership a lot of credit for trying to make it work in St. Pete, however if a young, competitive playoff team isn't enough to fill that ugly can of a "ballpark", what is? They can only repaint it so many times.

They offered the city of St. Pete a privately funded new ballpark solution contingent upon building over an existing spring training baseball facility located on the bayfront, however they were voted down. Other Tampa-area ballpark ideas are being tossed around, however I expect this team to bolt for the Carolinas, Montreal or some other MLB target sooner than later. I can realistically envision the Rays being the first team ever to win a World Series in front of a non-sold out ballpark. :?:

DirtySox
09-28-2010, 10:47 AM
Longoria's not alone. From David Price's Twitter (http://twitter.com/DAVIDprice14):

Saw this as well. He was heavily berated for tweeting it and later apologized. He's right though.

WizardsofOzzie
09-28-2010, 11:01 AM
Where did all those die hard fans from 2008 go? :scratch:

Bump34
09-28-2010, 11:16 AM
BTW...Earlier this morning David Price apologized on his Twitter account...

Here we go again... I feel like I am hosting the White Sox post game show in 2000 all over again! Does everyone remember when the White Sox shocked baseball and won the Central Division over the mighty Indians and 1,947,799 fans flocked to U.S. Cellular...

The Wednesday after the White Sox clinched it in Minnesota 16,000 packed the Cell to cheer on the White Sox against the Red Sox... Later that week on a FRIDAY night 17,735 jammed the South Side to root on the Division Champs. I heard the same things... crappy ballpark...scary location... indifferent fans.

Do the Rays need a new place to play...Yes... We floated an idea for a downtown St. Petersburg facility but pulled back when it appeared the support wasn't going to be there... It was NOT voted down... it never got to that.

Where should the new ballpark be? My own personal opinion is that it has to be closer to, but not necessarily in, downtown Tampa. Would that automatically mean 3,000,000 in attendance... probably not... but I do think it would allow to get over 2,000,000 a majority of seasons... and approach 2,500,000+ when the team is good.

I agree with Red, the poor economy has hit Florida as hard as any state in the country... about 13% are unemployed and I would not be surprised if 1 in every 4 in the region are underemployed... tough to reach into the pocket to pay for baseball games if nothing is there.

Finally as far as interest... TV ratings are a close to a 6... (I don't think the White Sox are even a 2)... and the radio broadcast is the highest rated "show" each night in the market!:bandance:

Will things turn around in the seats? Only time will tell and it might be running out if the folks around here don't figure out where to put a new ballpark.

Sorry for the ramble...

Bump34
09-28-2010, 11:25 AM
By the way... still love WSI!!!

hi im skot
09-28-2010, 11:43 AM
Dave, it's always good to hear your insights.

The difference between the 2000 White Sox and the 2010 Rays is that the Rays have a recent track record of being a solid, pennant-winning ball club. From 1995 until 1999, the Sox had only finished above .500 once.

White Sox fans hadn't been given much to cheer about in years leading up to the 2000 playoff run. The current incarnation of the Rays has been one of the best teams in baseball.

Apples and oranges, really.

Bump34
09-28-2010, 11:55 AM
Dave, it's always good to hear your insights.

The difference between the 2000 White Sox and the 2010 Rays is that the Rays have a recent track record of being a solid, pennant-winning ball club. From 1995 until 1999, the Sox had only finished above .500 once.

White Sox fans hadn't been given much to cheer about in years leading up to the 2000 playoff run. The current incarnation of the Rays has been one of the best teams in baseball.

Apples and oranges, really.

We went around that pennant winning track...once... and fell off... Season tix got a bit of a boost for last year... but many didn't and couldn't purchase this year...

TheOldRoman
09-28-2010, 12:04 PM
Dave, it's always good to hear your insights.

The difference between the 2000 White Sox and the 2010 Rays is that the Rays have a recent track record of being a solid, pennant-winning ball club. From 1995 until 1999, the Sox had only finished above .500 once.

White Sox fans hadn't been given much to cheer about in years leading up to the 2000 playoff run. The current incarnation of the Rays has been one of the best teams in baseball.

Apples and oranges, really.I agree. Dave makes some very good points, but there were differences, such as the White Sox having survived in this market for 99 years beforehand. There were also fans who (kinda childishly) refused to set foot in the park again because of either the strike of 94 or the white flag trade. I don't know if all those people came back into the fold after 2005, but I digress. The Sox stadium situation was never as bad, either. Aside from the Trop being a ****hole, it is located way the heck away from everything. USCF is conviniently located, much more so that Wrigley. And I don't mean the Trop is "sterile" and without the bells and whistles as New Comiskey was, I mean that it is poorly suited for baseball, indoors, dreary and foul smelling (from what I am told).

I guess it is a moot point for the time being. The Rays have 17 years left on the supposedly iron-clad 30 year lease they signed. There will be baseball in St. Pete for several more years regardless of the attendance. I think it would be a little foolish of one of Tampa/St. Pete to build a new park (which would certainly make things better, at least short term) when the area hasn't shown it can support the team to begin with. Hopefully the fanbase builds over the next several years and the cities agree to talk about a stadium deal at that point. It doesn't look good, seeing as the Rays payroll is $71 million this year and ownership said it will be cut down to nearly $50 mil next year. Not only will the team not be as good after losing Crawford, Soriano and Pena, but some of the fans they do have will be upset as if they witnessed a Marlins firesale.

hi im skot
09-28-2010, 12:06 PM
And, for the record, I really like the Rays and would love to see them win the AL this year.

Hitmen77
09-28-2010, 03:19 PM
Dave, it's always good to hear your insights.

The difference between the 2000 White Sox and the 2010 Rays is that the Rays have a recent track record of being a solid, pennant-winning ball club. From 1995 until 1999, the Sox had only finished above .500 once.

White Sox fans hadn't been given much to cheer about in years leading up to the 2000 playoff run. The current incarnation of the Rays has been one of the best teams in baseball.

Apples and oranges, really.

I agree with some of your points. The Sox in 2000 were coming off the disastrous strike and White Flag Trade which both devastated attendance. If the Sox had won the pennant in 1998 (like the Rays did in '08), there is no way they would have had such small crowds in 2000.

That being said, Dave is right that the stuff they're saying about the Rays now does sound very similar to what people were saying about White Sox support in 2000 (and even in 2005!). I went through that crap as a Sox fan in 2000 (and to a lesser extent in 2005) and I'm not a big fan of players and the media "calling out" fans for lack of support. I'm not going to complain about being in that spot in 2000 and then rag on another team's fans for the same thing in 2010. I don't blame the diehard Rays fans. Their fanbase is small and their stadium is terrible, that's the problem.


Do the Rays need a new place to play...Yes... We floated an idea for a downtown St. Petersburg facility but pulled back when it appeared the support wasn't going to be there... It was NOT voted down... it never got to that.

Where should the new ballpark be? My own personal opinion is that it has to be closer to, but not necessarily in, downtown Tampa. Would that automatically mean 3,000,000 in attendance... probably not... but I do think it would allow to get over 2,000,000 a majority of seasons... and approach 2,500,000+ when the team is good.

.....Will things turn around in the seats? Only time will tell and it might be running out if the folks around here don't figure out where to put a new ballpark.



Dave,
from what I've heard, the Rays are locked in to a long term contract to play at Tropicana Field. With that being the case, what incentive do local officials have to getting a new stadium deal worked out? As far as they're concerned, the Rays are stuck there for many, many more years. It's not like they can bolt to another metro area in the near future.

It's a shame that the great team that the Rays have put together will start falling apart soon as the first of their stars hits free agency. I don't want to see another Pittsburgh or Kansas City in MLB where the team goes 20 years without making the playoffs and are lousy year after year.

Hitmen77
09-28-2010, 03:21 PM
You make a good point about the stadium, but I'm not sure about the area being indifferent to baseball, just indifferent to the Rays. Florida has one of the lowest percentage of residents born in the state they reside in. People still cling to their old allegiances.

They're not indifferent to baseball, just Rays baseball. Yes, the stadium will be full for the playoffs, but you cannot expect coastal Florida areas to warm up to a team when a lot of people have moved from areas where they have been a fan of a team for 40, 50, 60+ years. That's why the east coast teams draw so well down there. The people I was sitting next to sell their Yankees and Red Sox tickets and pay for a huge part of their whole season package. There are definitely a lot of diehard fans, but it takes a while to grow a fan base. Their many years of sucking it up didn't help either.

While I'm down here, I have been to some Rays games but would not think of switching my allegiance.


....and yet some people keep touting Las Vegas as the next great new market for MLB. :scratch:

Hitmen77
09-28-2010, 04:00 PM
Here's a good analysis of the issue. It also has links to several other articles.

http://hardballtalk.nbcsports.com/rays-attendance-is-not-about-fan-apathy-its-a-structural-thing.php

thomas35forever
09-28-2010, 05:44 PM
It's sad, really. The big mistake was putting a team in that area in the first place. Did MLB even take into account that many people there already had allegiances to other teams? If the Rays win the World Series and that doesn't increase the fan base, nothing ever will. This has already been proven with the Marlins twice. Just think, this could have been the White Sox.

salty99
09-28-2010, 06:01 PM
Rays are giving away 20,000 tickets to tomorrows game.

cards press box
09-28-2010, 06:23 PM
BTW...Earlier this morning David Price apologized on his Twitter account...

Here we go again... I feel like I am hosting the White Sox post game show in 2000 all over again! Does everyone remember when the White Sox shocked baseball and won the Central Division over the mighty Indians and 1,947,799 fans flocked to U.S. Cellular...

The Wednesday after the White Sox clinched it in Minnesota 16,000 packed the Cell to cheer on the White Sox against the Red Sox... Later that week on a FRIDAY night 17,735 jammed the South Side to root on the Division Champs. I heard the same things... crappy ballpark...scary location... indifferent fans.

Do the Rays need a new place to play...Yes... We floated an idea for a downtown St. Petersburg facility but pulled back when it appeared the support wasn't going to be there... It was NOT voted down... it never got to that.

Where should the new ballpark be? My own personal opinion is that it has to be closer to, but not necessarily in, downtown Tampa. Would that automatically mean 3,000,000 in attendance... probably not... but I do think it would allow to get over 2,000,000 a majority of seasons... and approach 2,500,000+ when the team is good.

I agree with Red, the poor economy has hit Florida as hard as any state in the country... about 13% are unemployed and I would not be surprised if 1 in every 4 in the region are underemployed... tough to reach into the pocket to pay for baseball games if nothing is there.

Finally as far as interest... TV ratings are a close to a 6... (I don't think the White Sox are even a 2)... and the radio broadcast is the highest rated "show" each night in the market!:bandance:

Will things turn around in the seats? Only time will tell and it might be running out if the folks around here don't figure out where to put a new ballpark.

Sorry for the ramble...

Dave, with all the difficulty building a new stadium in the area, has the issue of relocation been raised? I could see where the ownership might throw up its hand and say for whatever reason we can't get a new stadium and we can't draw in this one, even with arguably the best team in baseball.

I've long thought that some team would attempt to move to Jersey City and become the third team in New York. A stadium could be built on the waterfront in Jersey City facing Manhattan. If done right, such a stadium could be beautiful and very profitable.

The New York metropolitan area could, no doubt, support three or maybe four franchises. I would expect that fans in that area who can't get and/or afford tickets for the Yankees would love to support a great young team like the Jays.

I have no connection with the New York area and am not advocating that this take place (although anything that would bug the Yankees, and this certainly would, is usually a good thing). I just think that this solution is an obvious one, and the only reason is hasn't happened is that no one has challenged the territorial rights that either the Yanks or Mets have on Northern Jersey.

cards press box
09-28-2010, 06:24 PM
And, for the record, I really like the Rays and would love to see them win the AL this year.

Me too. And the Rays winning the World Series would be fine, too.

Red Barchetta
09-28-2010, 11:12 PM
Where should the new ballpark be? My own personal opinion is that it has to be closer to, but not necessarily in, downtown Tampa. Would that automatically mean 3,000,000 in attendance... probably not... but I do think it would allow to get over 2,000,000 a majority of seasons... and approach 2,500,000+ when the team is good.




I know they have tossed the idea about building a new ballpark as part of a larger entertainment complex off of I4 near the Florida State Fairgrounds and across from the Hard Rock Casino. Another option I heard was off of Dale Mabry near Raymond James and the Yankees Legends Field.

I for one would like to see them scale down the idea and build a smaller (Wrigley size) ballpark around Ybor near downtown Tampa. I love the old Tampa architecture and I think they could really build up a neighborhood feel complete with the trolley, etc.

I think another ball mall in the middle of the parking lot near an expessway will never provide that sense of community that a ballpark in downtown Tampa would. St. Pete had their shot so I would like to see Tampa get a retractable roof ballpark. The weather in April, May, September and October is very nice, especially at night.

I like the Rays, I hope they stay, however the Tropicana experiment is over. Selig and MLB needs to step in and help this franchise.

ewokpelts
09-29-2010, 08:51 AM
....and yet some people keep touting Las Vegas as the next great new market for MLB. :scratch:vegas is seen as a positive because people travel to vegas for vacations. whereas people only go to florida to retire.

ewokpelts
09-29-2010, 09:01 AM
I know they have tossed the idea about building a new ballpark as part of a larger entertainment complex off of I4 near the Florida State Fairgrounds and across from the Hard Rock Casino. Another option I heard was off of Dale Mabry near Raymond James and the Yankees Legends Field.

I for one would like to see them scale down the idea and build a smaller (Wrigley size) ballpark around Ybor near downtown Tampa. I love the old Tampa architecture and I think they could really build up a neighborhood feel complete with the trolley, etc.

I think another ball mall in the middle of the parking lot near an expessway will never provide that sense of community that a ballpark in downtown Tampa would. St. Pete had their shot so I would like to see Tampa get a retractable roof ballpark. The weather in April, May, September and October is very nice, especially at night.

I like the Rays, I hope they stay, however the Tropicana experiment is over. Selig and MLB needs to step in and help this franchise. how by buying out thier lease?

soxfanatlanta
09-29-2010, 09:03 AM
vegas is seen as a positive because people travel to vegas for vacations. whereas people only go to florida to retire.

Um...:?:

You obviously don't know that tourism is a huge part of Florida's economy...about $57 Billion worth.

Bump34
09-29-2010, 11:47 AM
There are people a lot smarter than me working on the stadium situation... It is truly my own opinion... but even with this so-called iron clad lease... I do not expect the Rays to be playing in Tropicana Field 10 years from now... I would imagine the ownership group will have an area in mind some time during the off season... and let the legal process play out...

Nobody in the organization has talked about relocation outside of the Tampa Bay area... I really don't see how the Yankees and Mets will allow a team in Jersey.

roylestillman
09-29-2010, 02:52 PM
Selig was just on the Rangers game broadcast and indicated that one of the priorities of the off season will be a discussion of the attendance issue with Tampa ownership. He said he agreed with Price's comments. Here's a blurb about the ticket giveaway:

http://www.foxnews.com/sports/2010/09/29/tampa-bay-rays-giving-away-free-tickets/

Hitmen77
09-29-2010, 03:17 PM
vegas is seen as a positive because people travel to vegas for vacations. whereas people only go to florida to retire.

People on vacation in Vegas are expected to fill up an MLB Park night after night? :scratch:

Selig was just on the Rangers game broadcast and indicated that one of the priorities of the off season will be a discussion of the attendance issue with Tampa ownership. He said he agreed with Price's comments. Here's a blurb about the ticket giveaway:

http://www.foxnews.com/sports/2010/09/29/tampa-bay-rays-giving-away-free-tickets/

What is Bud going to do, tell Tampa's owners to force people to attend games? They're already doing their part by putting a great product on the field.

Isn't it MLB under Bud Selig's leadership that St. Petersburg got an expansion franchise in 1995? What was MLB thinking (besides $$$$ from the expansion fees)? This was well after teams were in a hurry to get out of their multipurpose or fixed roof astroturf stadiums. They should have seen Tropicana Field was already a white elephant at that point. ....and why did MLB or the new Tampa owership sign a 30-year "iron clad" lease at such a terrible facility?

I suppose nobody at MLB, when analyzing possible expansion locations, has any clue about bad ballparks in bad locations....but now Bud wants to have a talk with Tampa about their bad attendance.

TheOldRoman
09-29-2010, 03:48 PM
People on vacation in Vegas are expected to fill up an MLB Park night after night? :scratch:



What is Bud going to do, tell Tampa's owners to force people to attend games? They're already doing their part by putting a great product on the field.

Isn't it MLB under Bud Selig's leadership that St. Petersburg got an expansion franchise in 1995? What was MLB thinking (besides $$$$ from the expansion fees)? This was well after teams were in a hurry to get out of their multipurpose or fixed roof astroturf stadiums. They should have seen Tropicana Field was already a white elephant at that point. ....and why did MLB or the new Tampa owership sign a 30-year "iron clad" lease at such a terrible facility?

I suppose nobody at MLB, when analyzing possible expansion locations, has any clue about bad ballparks in bad locations....but now Bud wants to have a talk with Tampa about their bad attendance.Keep in mind that this was in the time period where all sports viewed Florida as this incredible untapped resource. The late 80's into early 90's saw the Marlins, Devil Rays, Magic, Heat, Lightning, Jaguars and hockey's Panthers spring up. All sports thought it was a great market, and despite a few partial successes (Lightning, Magic, Heat), all the teams have done poorly with the fans. It wasn't just baseball who thought Florida would be a huge success.

Red Barchetta
09-29-2010, 04:00 PM
how by buying out thier lease?

That would be a great place to start. I don't know why the St. Pete brass would be so upset about the Rays breaking this lease since they couldn't garner enough interest to simply move the team a few blocks east.

The dome was there before the Rays and it can stay after the Rays. There will always be a demand for a good tractor pull contest! :D:

Hitmen77
09-29-2010, 04:28 PM
Keep in mind that this was in the time period where all sports viewed Florida as this incredible untapped resource. The late 80's into early 90's saw the Marlins, Devil Rays, Magic, Heat, Lightning, Jaguars and hockey's Panthers spring up. All sports thought it was a great market, and despite a few partial successes (Lightning, Magic, Heat), all the teams have done poorly with the fans. It wasn't just baseball who thought Florida would be a huge success.

Can you imagine how much worse off Reinsdorf & Co. would be right now if they had indeed moved the Sox to Tropicana Field.

Better yet, the Giants were on the verge of moving there in the early 90s. They could be playing at Tropicana Field right now instead of AT&T Park. :o:

That would be a great place to start. I don't know why the St. Pete brass would be so upset about the Rays breaking this lease since they couldn't garner enough interest to simply move the team a few blocks east.

The dome was there before the Rays and it can stay after the Rays. There will always be a demand for a good tractor pull contest! :D:

IIRC, the dome was built specifically to lure a MLB team to St. Petersburg. Before they got an expansion team, they were trying to get the White Sox, Giants, Twins, or Mariners to move there in the late 80s through mid 90s.

I don't know if the dome would stick around if the Rays left. The Astrodome is still open even though MLB and the NFL left that facility. By the way, speaking of old stadiums, there was an interesting link to a NY Times article (from a link I posted earlier in this thread) that talks about cities being stuck paying for these facilities even after they are torn down.
http://hardballtalk.nbcsports.com/cities-are-still-paying-for-stadiums-that-no-longer-exist.php
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/08/sports/08stadium.html?_r=3&hp

Red Barchetta
09-29-2010, 06:31 PM
As of today, the Rays have the best record in MLB this season. They have clinched a playoff spot and the only question is whether they will win the AL East or take the Wildcard. With all that, the owners gave away 20,000 tickets today in order for the final regular season game at the Tropicana dome to be filled and give the Rays a strong send off into the playoffs.

A very nice thing to do by the owners, however an example of how bad things are for this franchise in St. Petersburg. The owners and players have done everything they possible could to succeed in St. Pete. Experiment over. Time to move! This is where Selig and MLB moves in and helps them get out of that lease. Playing in the Trop is hurting the "product" that is MLB baseball. There are too many cities who would love the Rays organization to continue to watch this unfold in St. Pete.

Dan H
09-30-2010, 03:16 AM
Not every metropolitan area can support a major league baseball team. There are many reasons the Rays aren't drawing and it is too bad. The organization does what it can to attract fans. High unemployment and low identification are big contributing factors. Maybe the team should be moved although there aren't many large markets left.

I don't blame Rays players for being frustrated but I have no use for the media calling out fans. This tactic is offensive and doesn't work. It will never work.

ewokpelts
09-30-2010, 09:08 AM
People on vacation in Vegas are expected to fill up an MLB Park night after night? :scratch:



What is Bud going to do, tell Tampa's owners to force people to attend games? They're already doing their part by putting a great product on the field.

Isn't it MLB under Bud Selig's leadership that St. Petersburg got an expansion franchise in 1995? What was MLB thinking (besides $$$$ from the expansion fees)? This was well after teams were in a hurry to get out of their multipurpose or fixed roof astroturf stadiums. They should have seen Tropicana Field was already a white elephant at that point. ....and why did MLB or the new Tampa owership sign a 30-year "iron clad" lease at such a terrible facility?

I suppose nobody at MLB, when analyzing possible expansion locations, has any clue about bad ballparks in bad locations....but now Bud wants to have a talk with Tampa about their bad attendance.more like fans will TRAVEL to see thier team in vegas.

Red Barchetta
09-30-2010, 09:38 AM
Not every metropolitan area can support a major league baseball team. There are many reasons the Rays aren't drawing and it is too bad. The organization does what it can to attract fans. High unemployment and low identification are big contributing factors. Maybe the team should be moved although there aren't many large markets left.

I don't blame Rays players for being frustrated but I have no use for the media calling out fans. This tactic is offensive and doesn't work. It will never work.

I don't think it was the players intent to call out the fans. Langoria just expressed the fact that the team plays off the energy of the home field fans and 12,000 showing up for a potential post-season clinching game was disappointing.

If you took an arial shot of the Tampa/St. Pete/Clearwater/Etc. area and then saw where the Tropicana Dome is located, you wonder why they ever chose to build it in that location. That's why it took so long post-construction to fill it with a MLB team. It was simply a very bad and poorly planned idea. The St. Petersburg politicans and business leaders simply won't let go of that fact and keep warning the team about the lock-tight lease. If they would step back and work with the team, the entire metropolitan area could benefit from a new ballpark.

Hitmen77
09-30-2010, 10:51 AM
more like fans will TRAVEL to see thier team in vegas.

If MLB really thinks that's a way to count on 2.5 million attendance for a team and 30,000 fans night after night, they're crazy.

....and, like someone else already said, people do like traveling to Florida too.

SI1020
09-30-2010, 11:19 AM
There are too many cities who would love the Rays organization to continue to watch this unfold in St. Pete. Really? Where are those cities I wonder?

Red Barchetta
09-30-2010, 11:58 AM
Really? Where are those cities I wonder?

Montreal, Charlotte (my pick), Portland, Jacksonville and San Antonio are all cities who have expressed interest. A 3rd team in the NY/NJ area has also been considered. MLB is setting attendance records and barring another work stoppage, I see this continuing post recession. You could add Tampa proper as another city if the Rays had their choice of locations.

doublem23
09-30-2010, 12:02 PM
Montreal, Charlotte (my pick), Portland, Jacksonville and San Antonio are all cities who have expressed interest. A 3rd team in the NY/NJ area has also been considered. MLB is setting attendance records and barring another work stoppage, I see this continuing post recession.

Does anyone actually believe Charlotte, San Antonio, or Jacksonville are large enough to support a Major League baseball team?

Red Barchetta
09-30-2010, 12:14 PM
Does anyone actually believe Charlotte, San Antonio, or Jacksonville are large enough to support a Major League baseball team?

Apparently, MLB does. Both San Antonio and Jacksonville were trying to get the Marlins to move to their cities before they closed their new stadium deal in Miami. Charlotte has one of the fastest growing population centers in the U.S. and Selig even likes that idea. The problem with the Rays is that St. Pete won the battle of the Tampa Bay area by building a cheap ball dome to show MLB they were ready for a professional team. They wanted to make sure they got MLB since Tampa had the NFL and NHL (even though the Lightning played in the Suncoast "Thunderdome" for 3 seasons).

As long as they draw more than 18,000 per game, it's an improvement over St. Pete.

TheOldRoman
09-30-2010, 12:41 PM
Jacksonville will be losing its NFL team in the next 3 years or so. The Jaguars have had nearly all their home games blacked out for the past few years. If a city can't support an NFL franchise, which only needs people in the seats and luxury boxes 8 times a year, there is no chance in hell they would be able to support baseball.

soxfanatlanta
09-30-2010, 12:43 PM
Apparently, MLB does. Both San Antonio and Jacksonville were trying to get the Marlins to move to their cities before they closed their new stadium deal in Miami. Charlotte has one of the fastest growing population centers in the U.S. and Selig even likes that idea. The problem with the Rays is that St. Pete won the battle of the Tampa Bay area by building a cheap ball dome to show MLB they were ready for a professional team. They wanted to make sure they got MLB since Tampa had the NFL and NHL (even though the Lightning played in the Suncoast "Thunderdome" for 3 seasons).

As long as they draw more than 18,000 per game, it's an improvement over St. Pete.

I liked my time in Charlotte, but I just do not see how that city can support a team when the Knights' attendance is pretty bad. You can go on all you want about how bad their ballpark is; I will not argue that, but very few people care about baseball there. Those that do are transplants with loyalties elsewhere.

Red Barchetta
09-30-2010, 12:43 PM
Jacksonville will be losing its NFL team in the next 3 years or so. The Jaguars have had nearly all their home games blacked out for the past few years. If a city can't support an NFL franchise, which only needs people in the seats and luxury boxes 8 times a year, there is no chance in hell they would be able to support baseball.

SEC football is king down here. The Bucs also had their first home game blacked out this season as well. Pretty sad.

jdm2662
09-30-2010, 12:45 PM
Jacksonville will be losing its NFL team in the next 3 years or so. The Jaguars have had nearly all their home games blacked out for the past few years. If a city can't support an NFL franchise, which only needs people in the seats and luxury boxes 8 times a year, there is no chance in hell they would be able to support baseball.

Yeah, the Jags are in serious trouble. The owner kept Jack Del Rio because he couldn't afford to eat his contract. They also had to reduce the capacity by about 10K.

soxfanatlanta
09-30-2010, 12:47 PM
SEC football is king down here. The Bucs also had their first home game blacked out this season as well. Pretty sad.

Let's see...go to a football game to watch a mediocre team...or go to the beach...hmmm...

No brainer for me :tongue:

Hitmen77
09-30-2010, 12:48 PM
Apparently, MLB does. Both San Antonio and Jacksonville were trying to get the Marlins to move to their cities before they closed their new stadium deal in Miami. Charlotte has one of the fastest growing population centers in the U.S. and Selig even likes that idea. The problem with the Rays is that St. Pete won the battle of the Tampa Bay area by building a cheap ball dome to show MLB they were ready for a professional team. They wanted to make sure they got MLB since Tampa had the NFL and NHL (even though the Lightning played in the Suncoast "Thunderdome" for 3 seasons).

As long as they draw more than 18,000 per game, it's an improvement over St. Pete.

When has MLB ever said that they think San Antonio and Jacksonville can support a MLB team? :dunno: If Selig said that he likes the idea of MLB coming to Charlotte, do you have a link to where he said that?

I'm sure Selig and MLB were more than happy to have other metro areas talk up their interest in getting the Marlins as a way to put the pressure on South Florida to get a stadium deal done. But that doesn't mean that they necessarily think those places are great markets for an MLB team.

....and finally, even if they said these places were great MLB markets, these are the same people who thought St. Pete would be a great market. I wouldn't trust a word they say. What they say is driven by a desire to squeeze stadium deals out of cities for their existing teams.

Does anyone actually believe Charlotte, San Antonio, or Jacksonville are large enough to support a Major League baseball team?

MLB is probably the toughest sport to have a metro area support. There are 81 home games and in today's MLB economics, if you aren't drawing 30,000 per game/2.5 million per year, you're struggling to support a team. The other major sports don't even come close to asking for that kind of fan turnout.

Plus there is also the whole issue of smaller markets struggling to keep up with the TV revenue streams of the big market teams.

AZChiSoxFan
09-30-2010, 02:30 PM
....and yet some people keep touting Las Vegas as the next great new market for MLB. :scratch:

Exactly. BTW, it's pretty much the same here in Phx. The team won the WS in 2001, won the div in 2002, and won the div again in 2007. These days, you can pretty much hear a pin drop in the place.

ewokpelts
09-30-2010, 02:31 PM
Exactly. BTW, it's pretty much the same here in Phx. The team won the WS in 2001, won the div in 2002, and won the div again in 2007. These days, you can pretty much here a pin drop in the place.
the diamond backs have sucked the last three years, and have ugly uniforms. oh, and the recession hit arizona pretty hard.

Hitmen77
09-30-2010, 03:06 PM
Exactly. BTW, it's pretty much the same here in Phx. The team won the WS in 2001, won the div in 2002, and won the div again in 2007. These days, you can pretty much hear a pin drop in the place.

....and Phoenix is a much bigger city and metro area than Las Vegas (or Tampa for that matter).

The only 2 teams in MLB that are in a bad stadium situation and facing possible relocation are Tampa Bay and Oakland. I think one of the biggest problems is that there really isn't much in the way of other markets that can support an MLB team. For both of these teams, what may most likely happen is that they'll relocate but within the same general area (Rays staying in central Florida and A's in northern California).

Northern New Jersey might be the best market out there for a team, but they'd have to battle the Yankees and Mets to get a 3rd team in the NY metro area.

Mohoney
09-30-2010, 04:14 PM
I wonder if lowering prices on unused tickets the day of the game would work to get fans in there. Of course, you do run the risk of devaluing your product and alienating your season ticket holders.

Longoria is right. Something needs to change. That team is too good to just be ignored the way they are.

ewokpelts
09-30-2010, 04:41 PM
I wonder if lowering prices on unused tickets the day of the game would work to get fans in there. Of course, you do run the risk of devaluing your product and alienating your season ticket holders.

Longoria is right. Something needs to change. That team is too good to just be ignored the way they are.yankees do this witha partnership with modells. you can buy the tickets ONLY at the times square modell's

Red Barchetta
09-30-2010, 08:47 PM
When has MLB ever said that they think San Antonio and Jacksonville can support a MLB team? :dunno: If Selig said that he likes the idea of MLB coming to Charlotte, do you have a link to where he said that?

I'm sure Selig and MLB were more than happy to have other metro areas talk up their interest in getting the Marlins as a way to put the pressure on South Florida to get a stadium deal done. But that doesn't mean that they necessarily think those places are great markets for an MLB team.

....and finally, even if they said these places were great MLB markets, these are the same people who thought St. Pete would be a great market. I wouldn't trust a word they say. What they say is driven by a desire to squeeze stadium deals out of cities for their existing teams.



MLB is probably the toughest sport to have a metro area support. There are 81 home games and in today's MLB economics, if you aren't drawing 30,000 per game/2.5 million per year, you're struggling to support a team. The other major sports don't even come close to asking for that kind of fan turnout.

Plus there is also the whole issue of smaller markets struggling to keep up with the TV revenue streams of the big market teams.

MLB never said that San Antonio or Jacksonville can support a MLB team, however they did allow the investors from those cities to contact the Marlins prior to the Marlins securing their new ballpark deal in Miami.

Selig was on ESPN earlier this year talking about the potentially expanding the playoffs to include 2 more wild card teams and potential expansion. Charlotte was on of the cities mentioned during the interview.

I don't think expansion will happen, however I do think there is a valid option to move both the Rays and the A's.

WhiteSox5187
09-30-2010, 10:50 PM
MLB never said that San Antonio or Jacksonville can support a MLB team, however they did allow the investors from those cities to contact the Marlins prior to the Marlins securing their new ballpark deal in Miami.

Selig was on ESPN earlier this year talking about the potentially expanding the playoffs to include 2 more wild card teams and potential expansion. Charlotte was on of the cities mentioned during the interview.

I don't think expansion will happen, however I do think there is a valid option to move both the Rays and the A's.

Expansion is a very very bad idea for every sport right now I think. Maybe football could do it. The A's are probably going to move somewhere and I suspect it will be in California because anywhere else would require major divisional re-alignment. I don't think Tampa is going anywhere just because of that lease, but, who knows? I think that organization is in trouble until they get a new stadium.

Red Barchetta
10-01-2010, 12:21 PM
Expansion is a very very bad idea for every sport right now I think. Maybe football could do it. The A's are probably going to move somewhere and I suspect it will be in California because anywhere else would require major divisional re-alignment. I don't think Tampa is going anywhere just because of that lease, but, who knows? I think that organization is in trouble until they get a new stadium.

I agree. I really liked the ballpark propsal to move to the A's to San Jose, however I heard that is dead.

As to the Rays, my original point is that Selig and MLB should do everything in their power to get the Rays out of that St. Pete lease and allow them to pursue other Tampa Bay area locations. I think the owners want to stay in the area, they just want out of the dome lease.

Winning and fielding a good team is obviously not enough to draw more than 18K fans in St. Pete. That is bad for the MLB product.

Hitmen77
10-02-2010, 12:45 PM
I agree. I really liked the ballpark propsal to move to the A's to San Jose, however I heard that is dead.



No, the proposal is still active:
http://www.mercurynews.com/southbaybaseball

One of the biggest hurdles, though, is that I believe the Giants have "territorial rights" over San Jose and that needs to be addressed if the A's are going to move to San Jose.


On the other hand, there is a guy out there who has started a campaign to move the A's back to Philadelphia!:redneck
http://www.philly2philly.com/sports/sports_articles/2010/9/18/55065/can_jt_ramsay_singlehandedly_bring_the_oakland_bac k_philadelp

soxfanreggie
10-02-2010, 01:29 PM
SEC football is king down here. The Bucs also had their first home game blacked out this season as well. Pretty sad.

The Bucs have been last or near last in payroll constantly since winning the Super Bowl. The Bucs have some great ticket deals this year, which has drawn me to get tickets to some games, but when you fill a huge chunk of the roster with no-name young guys and cut beloved veterans, you're going to take a hit.

Things could pick up a little bit if the team continues to show it can win and play exciting football. Having snowbirds starting their migration this month can't hit either.

TDog
10-03-2010, 03:15 PM
I wonder if lowering prices on unused tickets the day of the game would work to get fans in there. Of course, you do run the risk of devaluing your product and alienating your season ticket holders.

Longoria is right. Something needs to change. That team is too good to just be ignored the way they are.

The Rays aren't going to be nearly as good next year, so the point may be moot. Maybe Longoria should demand a trade. He doesn't have the technical right to demand a trade, but he has the right to say the Rays should trade him.

ewokpelts
10-04-2010, 09:36 AM
i had a code for ALDS presale tickets. good for four tickets each TO GAME 1 AND 2. I put it up on the tampa craigslist(not askin for money). no one responded. stubhub alds ticx are as low as $26(face value is 30). i think no one cares about the rays.