It seems that our opinion on the Rays stadium is often just the opposite of whichever side spoke last. That is, we generally dislike anything St. Pete Mayor Bill Foster or Rays owner Stuart Sternberg says on the subject. But the St. Pete Times seems pretty clear on which side they despise more.

In an editorial that ran in Sunday’s paper, the Times calls Mayor Foster “The Minor League Mayor”

St. Petersburg Mayor Bill Foster’s minor league approach to securing Tampa Bay’s future in Major League Baseball diminishes the community and the elected office he holds. What’s missing is the ambition, sophistication and creativity necessary to negotiate with the Tampa Bay Rays and build public support for a modern baseball stadium…The mayor has generally treated the Rays as a courtroom adversary rather than a significant business that contributes to the civic and economic life of the entire region.…If politics were baseball, by now the mayor would have been sent down to the Durham Bulls.

The editorial calls on “others to step up,” listing the St. Petersburg City Council, the business community, and the Rays.

Hey, we hate how nonchalant the Rays have been. And we hate that Mayor Foster has indeed treated this as an adversarial relationship from the beginning. So in our eyes, there is plenty of blame to go around. But we are not ready to lay all the blame at the feet of Mayor Foster.

Howver, it sure seems like the St. Pete Times already has Mayor Foster knee-deep in a pile of blame-covered sh*t.

 
 

14 Comments

  1. Alex says:

    ….isn’t the Times a proud sponsor of the Rays?

  2. Matt says:

    I tend to side closer to the Rays as well. Foster just seems to have his fingers in his ears saying ‘lalalala’.

  3. rayalan says:

    Foster has looked like a total incompetent through this whole matter.

  4. Don says:

    St petersburg Fl, Washington DC, Hicksville KY…A politician is a politician is a politician…they make decisions for you and me to live with/under

  5. Gus says:

    Foster has no cards to play. Nor do the Rays, absent breaking a lease with its citizens 16 seasons to go on it and the Rays building their own facility with private funds, two things which haven’t been done in recent US History (SF Giants built their own stadium but their lease at the Stick was up). Nobody likes to wait. But we all have to wait it out. “Modern baseball stadium” presumably means a retractable roofed stadium. That is $450M plus land and infrastructure. Nobody likes to hear it, but a new stadium “isn’t coming through that door”. Simple as that.

    Now can the Rays catch the Red Sox? Need Neiman to be solid here.

  6. LoLJFH says:

    I wonder how Bill would handle Jabil, HSN or others if they said they might leave without a new land lease deal, tax incentive, etc….? Is he a disgruntled ex-ballplayer hell bent on making team miserable so he can stick it to someone for being “wronged” in tee ball?
    Sternberg seems content to let this play out for a while and have people get angry at the city (office), not at the team, so they will begin to side with him. After this season I imagine Stu could open the books and show they didn’t make money based on attendance, etc…
    If noone went to games when we were losers and now noone goes when we have a winner on the field, what is the common denominator?
    Take away all the vile bluster and Bill is Vince.

  7. I tend to agree with Matt above. St. Pete seems to be holding the Rays hostage with that lease without providing help to get more butts in the seats.

  8. Rg says:

    My earlier question that was not posted(TWICE) is; what skin does SPT have in this game? They seem to be the one beating this dead horse ad nauseum.

  9. DL says:

    Rays have provided area with a winning team with the chance to compete for last 3 years now. Area has not provided the attendance they said they would when they argued “if they win, we will come”. Rays have done their part. SP has to either step up and treat them as a business they want in their area, or negotiate a settlement for early opt-out and allow the Rays to look elsewhere. Foster’s head in the sand only makes things worse. If he would do this to any other business in the area, they’d have packed their bags and left long ago. This is NOT how you keep businesses in the area. This is how you make them run away as fast as they can. Minor league mayor, indeed.

    • Sarah says:

      Agreed, except that most businesses aren’t asking taxpayers to build their new headquarters.

      • DL says:

        Right, but to keep big businesses in the area, the area will give tax breaks, etc and incentive packages. Rays right now receive worst support in MLB in attendance. This is a business model that cannot support a franchise. Crappy attendance and stadium = relocation…whether Foster likes it or not.

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