The St. Pete City Council met yesterday with Mayor Bill Foster, but it wasn’t long before the mayor walked out of the meeting, refusing to participate.

Before leaving, Mayor Foster stuck to his hardline stance, saying he is willing to talk with to the Rays, but only if they abandon their demands to explore sites outside of Pinellas County for a new stadium.

A presentation was then given, that covered the history of the franchise and the use-agreement between the city and the Rays. That is when Mayor Foster walked out…

“I know the history, I know the use agreement,” Foster said. “I’ve got work to do.”

Foster eventually returned at the end of the meeting, but had nothing further to say.

After the meeting, Foster said that he and Stuart Sternberg did discuss the possibility of a meeting, but that no date was set.

Foster also addressed the comments by Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, in which he stated that he thought “Major League Baseball would do better in Orlando,” and that he would be interested in exploring a new stadium for the Rays east of Tampa.

When asked about the comments, Foster responded in his typical “everything is fine” manner…

“That’s Buddy being Buddy,” Foster said. “I’ll put our waterfront against his any day.”

The Pinellas waterfront is nicer. But we’ll put any stadium Orlando builds against The Trop anyday.

In the meantime, as one council member said after the failed meeting, it would be nice if both sides could have an adult conversation on the matter. But maybe that is too much to ask for.

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9 Comments

  1. CRRaysHead90 says:

    Once again Foster proves how incompetent he is.

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  2. Martin B says:

    As much as I think the Rays shouldn't get public funding for their new stadium, or if they move they should be taken to the cleaners for breaking the use agreement, I can't stand how Mayor Foster behaves like a petulant child.

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  3. TBraysfan1 says:

    And this is the man who is responsible for a city? Grow up and act like an adult or do not run for public office. It is no suprise that something needs to be done about the Ray's being in St. Petersburg, you think he would want them to remain around the area instead of being non existing in the future.

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  4. kmccook says:

    I just cannot believe the lack of leadership by the Mayor.
    Please, stop this and do something.

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  5. Joe says:

    Oh contrare, this IS leadership. If he shows weakness, then he waives the use agreement. If you buy Stu's hardline BS crap, then you are weaker than I thought. Bottom line, they may get their Hillsborough park, but let the taxpayers and constituents be compensated!

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  6. Joe says:

    You tell me what his options are?! I don't want the Rays to leave. And I am not quite fully onboard what the city has done, but what would you do? It takes two to dance, John, and Stu is just as big as a petulant twerp/brat as Foster is in this. If you want to play hardball, then Foster has to dig in.

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  7. Andy says:

    Agree w/the majority here - Foster repeatedly acts like a spoiled brat, a la "if you don't play under my rules, I'm gonna take my dome & go home"!! When trying to negotiate any business deal, it's impossible to do so when 1 party takes this immature stance!! While Stu may have some accountability for the stalemate, he usually acts like the businessman that he is - maybe a bit more shady & shifty than some like (I do NOT agree w/this!), but that's not inconsistent w/being a NY businessman. When Foster's not acting like a BRAT, he resembles an ostrich w/his head dug deep into the St. Pete Beach!!

    The Rays ownership & management have done a beautiful job making this team a remarkable success w/o breaking an already spent bank, while also not bankrupting the future!!! Such success is almost unprecedented. I truly doubt they would make choices that would sabotage that success, so I believe they really desire a realistic solution. But they can't do that by themselves :(

    While I enjoy going to the Trop, I see the lack of viability of sustained success there. Let's face it - tho the Rays have been there only a short time, it's rather old as a facility & doesn't measure up. It's not fair to hold the Rays organization hostage b/c it sat virtually unoccupied for many years before landing the franchise!!

    Bottom line is, the team is too valuable now to let it relocate b/c of childish behavior!!!

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    • zenny says:

      Amen.

      Nobody's saying that St. Pete should just roll over let the Rays go scott free. But the mature thing to do would be for both sides to sit down like adults and talk about options going forward.

      Foster his head in the sand. As the years go by, the penalty for breaking the lease decreases. Eventually the Rays are just gonna up and leave, perhaps w/o giving the rest of the Tampa Bay area a chance to keep them here.

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