PDA

View Full Version : Sox historians, help me recall


white sox bill
05-14-2006, 06:15 PM
OK I don't want to sound "cubified" (meaning have no clue as to what I'm talking about) but are the following statements true, partially true, or no Bill you are stoned:

*Back in 1985 or 86, the land that was supposed to be the new Comiskey in Addison didn't go thru because on environmental issues involving wetlands. That coupled with a thumbs down by the residents in a referendum.

*Several yrs after New Comiskey was built, didn't a story (maybe a rumour) that St Pete didn't really offer JR that much of a sweetheart deal and that a lot of the terms were embellished for manipulation purposes?

*I assume there were 24 hr shifts in the building of New Comiskey correct?

Just can't seem to remember and I'm giving a speech on SOX/cubs politics soon in a class. Thanks!

Lip Man 1
05-14-2006, 06:42 PM
White Sox Bill:

Perhaps this will help:

"In 1988, Frank Morsani had tried to prevent Jerry Reinsdorf from getting American League approval for moving the White Sox to Tampa. He contacted several team owners, including the owner of the Baltimore Orioles, Edward Bennett Williams -- who in 1960 mounted a legal challenge to Calvin Griffith's relocation of the Washington Senators to Minnesota. Reinsdorf heard about it and became royally pissed off.

Morsani tried to block our move to St. Petersburg, Reinsdorf says. He fought us in the [Florida] legislature. And he went to see Edward Bennett Williams, who at the time owned the Orioles, and asked him to vote against the White Sox move to St. Petersburg. If baseball came to St. Petersburg, [Morsani] wanted to be involved. He had invested several million dollars trying to get an expansion team and if we came in, his money was going down the drain. But him going to see Williams was like someone who is not a member of a country club going to a member of the country club and asking him to vote against the admission of a third person. Ed Williams and I were members of the same country club and Morsani was not. I didn't think that was right.

Later in the same year, when Morsani attempted to buy the Texas Rangers, it was widely believed Reinsdorf was the man who stood in his way. Reinsdorf opposed the sale of the Rangers to Morsani; he also objected to broadcaster Ed Gaylord as owner. For blocking Morsani and Gaylord, the American League told Reinsdorf to find a qualified buyer for the Texas franchise. This made Reinsdorf even madder at Morsani, because he believed the price agreed upon by Morsani and Rangers owner Eddie Chiles was too high, making it tough to find an owner. However, Reinsdorf is generally credited with creating the George W. Bush ownership group.

Reinsdorf never forgot or forgave Morsani's actions, giving the Tampa car dealer a powerful and vocal opponent among baseball owners. Of Reinsdorf, Morsani says, I am not crazy about a lot of things that he did. In the spring of 1990, Allen Keesler took Morsani to the White Sox spring training camp in Sarasota to try and patch things up between his friends. The trio sat in Reinsdorf's box, ate lunch and talked. Allen was trying to patch things up between Morsani and me, Reinsdorf says. I was very angry because I felt, number one, he should be more civic-minded. Reinsdorf believed that despite Morsani's personal investment, he should have supported any baseball team that came to Tampa Bay, whether he owned it or not." From the internet story, ‘Stadium For Rent : Tampa Bay’s Quest For Major League Baseball’ by Bob Andelman. Chapter 10. Published 1993.

Lip

TheKittle
05-14-2006, 06:54 PM
White Sox Bill:

Perhaps this will help:

"In 1988, Frank Morsani had tried to prevent Jerry Reinsdorf from getting American League approval for moving the White Sox to Tampa. He contacted several team owners, including the owner of the Baltimore Orioles, Edward Bennett Williams -- who in 1960 mounted a legal challenge to Calvin Griffith's relocation of the Washington Senators to Minnesota. Reinsdorf heard about it and became royally pissed off.

Morsani tried to block our move to St. Petersburg, Reinsdorf says. He fought us in the [Florida] legislature. And he went to see Edward Bennett Williams, who at the time owned the Orioles, and asked him to vote against the White Sox move to St. Petersburg. If baseball came to St. Petersburg, [Morsani] wanted to be involved. He had invested several million dollars trying to get an expansion team and if we came in, his money was going down the drain. But him going to see Williams was like someone who is not a member of a country club going to a member of the country club and asking him to vote against the admission of a third person. Ed Williams and I were members of the same country club and Morsani was not. I didn't think that was right.

Later in the same year, when Morsani attempted to buy the Texas Rangers, it was widely believed Reinsdorf was the man who stood in his way. Reinsdorf opposed the sale of the Rangers to Morsani; he also objected to broadcaster Ed Gaylord as owner. For blocking Morsani and Gaylord, the American League told Reinsdorf to find a qualified buyer for the Texas franchise. This made Reinsdorf even madder at Morsani, because he believed the price agreed upon by Morsani and Rangers owner Eddie Chiles was too high, making it tough to find an owner. However, Reinsdorf is generally credited with creating the George W. Bush ownership group.

Reinsdorf never forgot or forgave Morsani's actions, giving the Tampa car dealer a powerful and vocal opponent among baseball owners. Of Reinsdorf, Morsani says, I am not crazy about a lot of things that he did. In the spring of 1990, Allen Keesler took Morsani to the White Sox spring training camp in Sarasota to try and patch things up between his friends. The trio sat in Reinsdorf's box, ate lunch and talked. Allen was trying to patch things up between Morsani and me, Reinsdorf says. I was very angry because I felt, number one, he should be more civic-minded. Reinsdorf believed that despite Morsani's personal investment, he should have supported any baseball team that came to Tampa Bay, whether he owned it or not." From the internet story, ‘Stadium For Rent : Tampa Bay’s Quest For Major League Baseball’ by Bob Andelman. Chapter 10. Published 1993.

Lip

Interesting history. Edward Bennett Williams died of cancer on August 13,1988. Larry Lucchino basically ran the Orioles. From my understanding EBW didn't have much to do with anything baseball related with the Orioles due to his failing health. So while Morsani could have called EWB in 1988, EWB had other things to worry about and I doubt would really get involved in trying to block a team from moving.

white sox bill
05-16-2006, 02:53 PM
White Sox Bill:

Perhaps this will help:

"In 1988, Frank Morsani had tried to prevent Jerry Reinsdorf from getting American League approval for moving the White Sox to Tampa. He contacted several team owners, including the owner of the Baltimore Orioles, Edward Bennett Williams -- who in 1960 mounted a legal challenge to Calvin Griffith's relocation of the Washington Senators to Minnesota. Reinsdorf heard about it and became royally pissed off.

Morsani tried to block our move to St. Petersburg, Reinsdorf says. He fought us in the [Florida] legislature. And he went to see Edward Bennett Williams, who at the time owned the Orioles, and asked him to vote against the White Sox move to St. Petersburg. If baseball came to St. Petersburg, [Morsani] wanted to be involved. He had invested several million dollars trying to get an expansion team and if we came in, his money was going down the drain. But him going to see Williams was like someone who is not a member of a country club going to a member of the country club and asking him to vote against the admission of a third person. Ed Williams and I were members of the same country club and Morsani was not. I didn't think that was right.

Later in the same year, when Morsani attempted to buy the Texas Rangers, it was widely believed Reinsdorf was the man who stood in his way. Reinsdorf opposed the sale of the Rangers to Morsani; he also objected to broadcaster Ed Gaylord as owner. For blocking Morsani and Gaylord, the American League told Reinsdorf to find a qualified buyer for the Texas franchise. This made Reinsdorf even madder at Morsani, because he believed the price agreed upon by Morsani and Rangers owner Eddie Chiles was too high, making it tough to find an owner. However, Reinsdorf is generally credited with creating the George W. Bush ownership group.

Reinsdorf never forgot or forgave Morsani's actions, giving the Tampa car dealer a powerful and vocal opponent among baseball owners. Of Reinsdorf, Morsani says, I am not crazy about a lot of things that he did. In the spring of 1990, Allen Keesler took Morsani to the White Sox spring training camp in Sarasota to try and patch things up between his friends. The trio sat in Reinsdorf's box, ate lunch and talked. Allen was trying to patch things up between Morsani and me, Reinsdorf says. I was very angry because I felt, number one, he should be more civic-minded. Reinsdorf believed that despite Morsani's personal investment, he should have supported any baseball team that came to Tampa Bay, whether he owned it or not." From the internet story, ‘Stadium For Rent : Tampa Bay’s Quest For Major League Baseball’ by Bob Andelman. Chapter 10. Published 1993.

Lip

Lip, thanks so much for the info, but can anyone refer to my orginal questions? Thanks

C-Dawg
05-16-2006, 03:17 PM
*I assume there were 24 hr shifts in the building of New Comiskey correct?



My employer was involved in the construction from near the beginning until the concrete structure of the ballpark was mostly up, and then again at the end of the 1991 season when they built the ramps and escalator structure across 35th Street. They were long days, yes, but I don't believe anyone was there at night.

Lip Man 1
05-16-2006, 03:37 PM
Bill:

According to the book The Lords Of The Realm by John Helyar a Sox spokesperson is quoted as saying that the Tampa / St. Pete market including the TV contract offered would have immediately put the Sox among the top revenue clubs in MLB.

Lip

LongLiveFisk
05-16-2006, 04:19 PM
In retrospect I like to think that Reinsdorf is HAPPY with the way things turned out. The St. Petersburg White Sox? :puking:

doogiec
05-17-2006, 06:42 AM
I'm working off memory here- but here's what I remember:

The Addison site was shot down primarily because of a failure to pass a referendum. Local residents just did not want a stadium in their backyard.

I don't recall any rush to build the new stadium, and doubt that 24 hour crews were used. I believe it took around 2 1/2 years to complete. If they were working 24/7, I'd like to know what they were doing.

Every account I read had the White Sox being offered 20 years rent free in Florida, with a guaranteed minimum ticket sale. I believe this was a matter of public record, as it was approved by St Pete city council. St Pete was desperate to get a team, as they had foolishly begun construction of a stadium without having a team, against the wishes of the public, and quite a few politicians would look very foolish if the stadium stood vacant for a long period of time (as it did). Although the Sox did get a great deal in staying in Chicago, it appears they turned down a better deal (at least at the time) in St Pete.

As poorly managed as the D Rays had been, it would be interesting to know if a better managed, existing team could have been successful down there, or it it truly is a bad market altogether. Fortunately we'll never know.

MrRoboto83
05-17-2006, 08:34 AM
I believe after the failed attempt to lure the Sox to Tampa, didn't the SF Giants threaten to move there?


Tampa Bay Giants?

Following the '89 World Series defeat, a local ballot initiative to fund a new stadium in San Francisco failed, threatening the franchise's future in the city. After the 1992 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1992) season, owner Bob Lurie, who had previously saved the franchise from moving to Toronto (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toronto) in 1976 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1976), put the team up for sale. A group of investors from St. Petersburg (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St._Petersburg%2C_Florida) led by Vince Naimoli (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vince_Naimoli) reached an agreement to purchase the team and move them across the country. However, Major League Baseball (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Major_League_Baseball) blocked the move, paving the way for the team to stay in San Francisco with an ownership group lead by Peter Magowan (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Magowan), the former CEO of Safeway (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Safeway). (As compensation, MLB granted Naimoli's group an expansion franchise, the Tampa Bay Devil Rays (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tampa_Bay_Devil_Rays).) Before even hiring a new General Manager or officially being approved as the new owners, Magowan signed superstar free agent Barry Bonds (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barry_Bonds) (a move which MLB initially blocked until some terms were negotiated to protect Lurie and Bonds in case the sale failed), a move that shaped the franchise's fortunes for more than a decade.

Medford Bobby
05-17-2006, 10:39 AM
I remember walking up the ramps at Old Comiskey for Opening day 1989 and they had just completed demolition of all the building across the street and it was just flat ground....and 2 years (1991) later it was done!!!!:?:

Lip Man 1
05-17-2006, 01:15 PM
Daver actually worked on the park I think from a plumbing standpoint. Perhaps he can provide more accurate information.

Lip

white sox bill
05-17-2006, 01:31 PM
Daver actually worked on the park I think from a plumbing standpoint. Perhaps he can provide more accurate information.

Lip

Yes I forgot that, like my brother, Daver is a turd chaser!! :). Just kidding Daver, I actually worked for a short time as one too, before I got on with the Iron Workers. If he doesn't reply, maybe I can email him. Thanks again,
Bill

tick53
05-17-2006, 05:18 PM
Hmmm! I wonder what would have happened if they would have let Edward
DeBartolo buy the team?:smokin:

Lip Man 1
05-17-2006, 10:07 PM
Great White Sox 'what if...'

One of two things in my book:

Either:

A. He'd had gotten arrested (or his family) for illegal gambling syndicate activities and stripped of the franchise.

Or B. He and his family would have spent considerable sums of money on the Sox in winning multiple World Championships. Which is exactly what happened when they bought the 49'ers after they were rebuffed with the Sox.

Lip

PaulDrake
05-17-2006, 10:26 PM
Great White Sox 'what if...'

One of two things in my book:

Either:

A. He'd had gotten arrested (or his family) for illegal gambling syndicate activities and stripped of the franchise.

Or B. He and his family would have spent considerable sums of money on the Sox in winning multiple World Championships. Which is exactly what happened when they bought the 49'ers after they were rebuffed with the Sox.

Lip He also owned the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1991 when they won their first of two Stanley Cups.

1 Dog
05-17-2006, 10:42 PM
I went to college in St. Petersburg (Eckerd). Tropicana Field began life as the Florida Suncoast Dome. It was basically built just to attract a team. People outside of Florida griped about the dome. People in Florida know that it rains almost every day, at least once a day, for at least a few minutes in July-August in the Tampa Bay area. I kid you not. The humidity can be awful. Tampa Bay residents wanted a dome, so people would actually be able to attend games.

The Tampa Bay Lightning moved in after struggling at the Tampa Bay State Fairgrounds. The Suncoast Dome had only been used for concerts and college tournaments until then. (Example: U2/Public Enemy/Big Audio Dynamite played Tampa Stadium; Metallica played the Suncoast Dome.)

Then, it was the Thunderdome. It was the biggest NHL venue for a number of years. Tampa Bay is also known as the "Lightning Capital of the World." (It rains a lot in summer, seriously.)

The Tampa Bay area is not a good location for a MLB team. It IS awesome for Spring Training. You have Eckerd College, Stetson University, U of Tampa, USF, and a few others I forgot. ST is always packed, but it's mostly young people, not "snowbirds." I can definitely understand the Devil Rays' attendance problems in summer.

When I went to Eckerd, St. Pete was the spring home of both the Cardinals and Orioles, and you could see as many as three-four games some days (if you wanted to stick around for intra-squad). Good times, good times. Weird story: Only foul ball that I ever caught at a game was off Dale Murphy in a Phillies' uniform. Seems eerie...

EDIT: I forgot to mention that the ST park in St. Petersburg used to be Al Lang Stadium. It is a decent venue right on the waterfront. (Sort of a less pretentious version of the Giants' field.) I don't know if teams still use it or not. Lang was your typical old neighborhood park right in the heart of downtown, even though it wasn't that old ('60s, I think).