Baseball in Tampa Bay has long been one of the MLB’s biggest failures.
While the Rays have seen some great teams throughout their history, even one that made a World Series appearance in 2008, the fans have never truly devoted their time to root for the boys in blue. The Rays, for the better part of two decades, have been at the bottom of attendance figures league-wide. Part of the low attendance numbers are due to the cesspool that is called Tropicana Field, and the other is the location. Tampa has never been a hotbed for rabid sports fans, it’s mostly a retirement home for people over the age of 70.
This horrific combination has lead to endless rumors about the team looking for a new stadium, followed by hundreds of failed projects, or just outright relocation.
Quickly, let’s transition to another completely unrelated topic: Baseball in Montreal. Ever since the Expos were unceremoniously moved from Canada to the nation’s capital in 2004, everyone and their mother has been clamoring for baseball to return in the North. With a handful of exhibition games being played in Olympic Stadium at the tail end of every spring training, Baseball lovers in Montreal come out in droves to prove that there is definitely a passionate fan base that would love a professional team. Look no further than Vlad Guerrero Jr’s walk-off home run in 2017. They like baseball. They WANT baseball.
Well, MLB thought, “Hey, we can kill two birds with one stone here and make everyone happy! Let’s kind of relocate the Rays to Montreal and everything will be great!” is how I assume the pitch went.
Yes, According to ESPN’s Jeff Passan, The Rays and MLB are looking into a plan to split time in both Tampa Bay AND Montreal for half the season, and it is Dumb, Dumb, DUMB.
BREAKING: The Tampa Bay Rays have received MLB's permission to explore becoming two-city team: the Tampa Bay area and Montreal, sources tell ESPN. The plan: Play early-season home games in the Tampa Bay area and finish the season in Montreal. News at ESPN: https://t.co/X6uSt4KLfC
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) June 20, 2019
Why wouldn’t the Rays just move to Montreal full time? There’s way more of a fan base north of the border, and there would be significant Financial backing in the form of Stephen Bronfman, son of the former Expos owner, and a conglomerate of other Montreal Businessman. Everything would make sense just to keep the team in Montreal permanently. It makes ZERO logistical sense to split time in two cities that are over 1000 miles away from each other.
Splitting time between the 2 cities would be an absolute nightmare as a player… Potentially moving your family/pets back-and-forth, finding pediatricians, doctors, vets, paying rent on multiple houses, even when you’re not there. No thanks.
— Brad Ziegler (@BradZiegler) June 20, 2019
Imagine that recruiting pitch to a free agent: Come to our team, where we have a consistently low payroll and where you will have to rent property in the Tampa area *and* Montreal and also hire a really brilliant accountant and possibly play in two worn-down domes. Sign me up!!
— Lindsey Adler (@lindseyadler) June 20, 2019
This is the dumbest thing ever. Just move the team to Montreal where people actually care about baseball. https://t.co/s9RUkGZWrQ
— Jared Carrabis (@Jared_Carrabis) June 20, 2019
BUILD ONE STADIUM ON THE MOON AND THE OTHER ON MARS AND HAVE JETPACK UNIFORMS DO I HAVE TO SOLVE ALL THESE PROBLEMS https://t.co/ANSb9vAwWl
— Red (@SurvivingGrady) June 20, 2019
Basically, EVERYONE hates this idea and just wants the team in Montreal. Why does MLB care about Tampa Bay so much? Are we holding onto the city because barely 16,000 people show up every night to watch baseball in a stadium that seats 42,000? Do we want more games to be played in the SHITTIEST STADIUM ON PLANET EARTH? WHY MLB?
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