St. Pete Mayor Bill Foster wrote a letter to Stuart Sternberg in response to Sternberg’s recent call for a regional solution to a new Rays stadium.
- “I do agree that the Rays are a “regional asset”, and will work tirelessly with the political and business leaders of Tampa Bay in support of this club. However, there is no resident of the entire region who has given up more in this quest for baseball than the resident of St. Ptersburg and Pinellas County. The taxpaying residents of St. Petersburg and Pinellas County have invested hundreds of millions of dollars in support of Major League Baseball and the Rays, and above all else, their interests will always come first.”
- “Let me be clear – we will consider any potential ballpark site in St. Ptersburg and the Gateway, but only as part of a process that recognizes and rewards the previous and ongoing investment and commitment of the St. Petersburg and Pinellas County resident, and thus, no sites outside of our geographic boundaries will be considered.”
The big point here is that the city of St. Pete feels moving the Rays to Tampa will be more damaging than any money still owed on the contract. And if this does go to court, the city is going to seek much, much more than what is still owed to them.
And no matter where you feel the Rays should be playing, it is hard to argue with the city on that matter.
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