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Man it was great to see the Rays beat the pinstripes off the Yankees last night! Rubber match today


"I care nothing for a man's religion whose dog and cat are not the better for it"

Abraham Lincoln

 

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Bill Buckner passed away today


"I care nothing for a man's religion whose dog and cat are not the better for it"

Abraham Lincoln

 

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Look at this BS:  https://www.mlb.com/rays/news/rays-tampa-bay-montreal-split-season

 

This absurdity will never happen. The MLBPA won't allow it. The City of St. Pete won't allow it. And Sternberg wasn't serious anyway. Just a ploy to increase pressure. The reality is that franchise is doomed. Here is why:

Vince Namioli: The clubs founder was a meddlesome cheapskate that did little to endear himself or his club to the Bay area. He did not rise to near the level of sheer malice Marlins fans go to experience with Jeffery Loria but those to were close. Hi tenure was marked with bad teams, bad decisions and bad fan service. What begins in misery tends to end there. 

The Bay Area: The Tampa Bay area is a mid sized market by MLB standards. It's made up of three cities, St. Petersburg, Tampa, and Bradenton. Combined they are the fourteenth largest market in the MLB. The problem is you can't combine them. There is a body of water only slightly smaller than New York City separating all three of them from each other. That means you really need to look at each city individually. The Rays are in St. Pete with about 260k people. That makes them last in the MLB. Dead last by a long bloody way. Worse still the average age of the citizens of St. Pete is 47 years. It's a city with a large population of retirees. Unfortunately that means such industry it has is largely service based. Which means lower income. $45k per year is the avg in 2017. It's expensive to live there so disposable income for luxuries like baseball tickets is a problem. St. Pete cannot support a MLB team. Period. 

Across the bay to the east is Tampa. Population is over 1M as of 2015. Average age is 36. Avg income $51k. There is a slightly better corporate community, a large Air Force Base, thee Universities, and lower cost of living. Just one problem, there is no money to build a stadium. Hillsborough County and the City of Tampa can't help much. Not won't... can't. It's ironic. St Pete can help the Rays build a stadium where they will continue to struggle. They could thrive in Tampa but it can't happen.Here's why:

The Tampa Bay Lighting and Buccaneers both are playing in relatively new facilities that were mostly publicly funded. And not totally paid for. Plus both teams are very popular and present a challenge to the Rays in getting leisure dollars from a populace that still has limited disposable income. It's cheaper to live east of the bay but brother, this is still Florida. It ain't cheap!  Which brings us to the last problem:

Economics: At an avg income of $51k the Tampa/Hillsborough market is 26th in the MLB. Ahead of just Cleveland, Miami, Cincinnati, and Pittsburgh. It has a higher cost of living than all of those save Miami. Tampa is also home to Busch Gardens and a short drive from Orlando with all of it's distractions. The Rays would be trying to break into a well saturated market with many alternatives to fight with for a lower than league average disposable income. 

So, the Rays are doomed in Tampa Bay and all that is why. They will keep on until 2027, impressing us with innovation and confounding sports prognosticators sometimes. But there is no escaping the reality of their situation. What begins in misery tends to end in misery. 
 


"I care nothing for a man's religion whose dog and cat are not the better for it"

Abraham Lincoln

 

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