Stuart Sternberg says the Tampa Bay Rays will not survive in downtown St. Pete. St. Pete Mayor Bill Foster says “tough shit” (we’re paraphrasing)…

St. Petersburg mayor Bill Foster said he fully expects the Rays to honor their contract and remain playing in downtown St. Petersburg until 2027. “Like it or not, we are married and joined at the hip until 2027.”

Foster is not suggesting the Rays play in the Trop until 2027. Rather, his point is that the site of Tropicana Field is not the problem, just the stadium itself. Of course, when the Rays proposed a downtown stadium two years ago, somebody had a problem with the location.

Foster also suggested that the current use-agreement contract between the Rays and the city is not necessarily set in stone, noting it could be amended “if the price is right.” But Foster made it clear, that would only happen if the Rays move to a new stadium in St. Pete.

We understand Foster taking a defensive stance. But we are not sure this rhetoric is helping the situation. Foster sounds like the kid that takes his ball home because he doesn’t like how everybody else is playing.

The brakes on this train may have just gone out. And it doesn’t look like it is going to stop before the whole thing goes to court.

 
 

15 Comments

  1. Mark says:

    Bill Foster is a POS.

    If anyone can look at the ABC report and honestly believe that the current location will work then they are mentally handicapped.

    This is coming from someone who lives 10 minutes from the Trop.

  2. TheDude says:

    I get posturing but this just makes him look narrow minded – a better public persona would involve a more positive response. Acknowledging the success the current Rays ownership has achieved, stating that it makes sense to review the current situation given the issues they have surfaced but ultimately stating that he believes the current model can and will work. He can be a harda$$ behind closed doors.

  3. Tim says:

    “Foster sounds like the kid that takes his ball home because he doesn’t like how everybody else is playing.”

    I think a more accurate analogy would be the guy who kills his wife for leaving him. The “if I can’t have her nobody will” mentality.

  4. Brett says:

    I seem to remember Foster running for office on a platform that included being open to ideas about the Ray’s and a new stadium. It was one of the more important issues at the time and he was all about working with the Rays to find a solution. I sure hope he hasn’t changed his mind. Honestly though, I hope the Rays get a shiny new stadium in Tampa and give St. Pete one giant middle finger as they drive out of town. I was born and raised in St. Pete, lived here all my life, and I think its terrible how this city has treated the new ownership, who have done nothing but improve every facet of the organization.

    • Thomas says:

      Brett,

      I totally agree. This coming from a lifelong St. Pete resident.

      • Carey says:

        Ditto, born and raised within 5 minutes of Trop and I think Foster is an idiot. Does he not remember that HIS CONSTITUANCY was basically so opposed to the waterfront stadium that they couldn’t even get it on a ballot for vote.

        Seriously. St. Pete had it’s chance and they blew it. Stop being a petulant douchbag and do what’s best for the area.

        • Bob says:

          Carey this is a great point.

          Look at all the Pro’s that come with the team moving to Tampa.

          -City gets a huge “urban” tract of land the could be sold for upwards of 60million.

          -This land would also go back on the tax rolls.

          - St. Pete and Pinellas don’t have to pay for a new stadium

          -St. Pete still keeps the team in the area and fans still get to enjoy the Rays.

          Looks like a win-win to me

          As a St. Pete resident I would prefer to have the Rays move to the Gateway area, but if we can keep them in the area I will be happy.

  5. Aaron says:

    I’ve said it many times before and I’ll say it again, he (Bill Foster) is a stubborn, greedy jackass.

  6. d-money says:

    I don’t usually comment on here but this douche has left me no choice….If he is going to cause the Rays to go through a long expensive court fight that just leaves the door open for them to say… “well if we are going to have to go through all of that anyway then we might as well look at out of town areas.”

    Another city just might be willing to fork over the cash to build a new stadium with sweet lease terms. Making it worthwhile for the Rays to just pay to get out of the current lease, packup and move out of town and i honestly can’t say i’d blame them.

    This is very short sighted on the Mayors part.

  7. Randy says:

    I don’t get Foster.

    If you look at the information there is no argument that could be made that the Trop location is a feasible site. If he is open to a new stadium why not discuss one at the Carillon site in St. Petersburg. It keeps the team in the city. Why would he insist on the Trop site and probably end up losing the team all together? It doesn’t seem like he is using common sense here

  8. Brett says:

    Also, the only real loser if the Rays move from the current location is Mark Ferguson. I hope Ferg has been banking some cash in order to build a new location next door to wherever the new stadium is built.

  9. Martin B says:

    People, you make public statements about how the Rays will have to honor their use agreement because if you don’t, you’ve made a concession on a very big bargaining chip.

    I didn’t vote for Mayor Foster, and I don’t have high hopes for his term, but he is absolutely doing the right thing for the city in this instance. As one of his constituents, I applaud it.

  10. Preston says:

    That asshole is going to fuck it up for all of us. I have a lot of personal pride in Saint Petersburg, and would like nothing more than to have them continue to call my favorite city home. *however*, if it is between them moving to Tampa, and moving to say, Charlotte, I’d much rather have them in Tampa. Any day. Any situation.

Leave a Comment