Hallandale Beach Blog -A common sense public policy overview offering a critical perspective on the current events, politics, govt., public policy, sports scene and pop culture of the U.S., South Florida, Europe and Sweden. In particular, Broward & Miami-Dade County, and the cities of Hallandale Beach, Hollywood & Aventura. Trust me when I tell you, this part of Florida is NOT the Land of Lincoln. Pictured in upper-left is Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower on State Road A1A; September 2008 photo by me, South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Without a Shadow of a Doubt (or a Shadow of a Stadium) in MLB, it's Location, Location, Location and that's bad news for Tampa Rays. In my opinion, no stadium location in that area will ever suffice because the fundamental problem is there simply aren't ENOUGH middle-class baseball fans there to make it worthwhile. That area will always be the dog-chasing-its-tail when it comes to a new baseball stadium; @StadiumShadow, @fieldofschemes, @darrenrovell














Predicate reading for this subject is Noah Pransky's Shadow of the Stadium blog
http://shadowofthestadium.blogspot.com/ and Neil de Mause's Field of Schemes blog: http://www.fieldofschemes.com/





Much as I try to follow the Tampa Rays new stadium and attendance saga, in the end, it usually makes me think of the dog-chasing-its-tail, and the dog thinking that its making progress when actually it's doing nothing of the sort.

In following this story it's hard not to notice that of all the many criticisms of the Rays attendance problems over the years, many rather predictable, it's hard not to notice that many in the Tampa Bay area media are reluctant to say what I've always thought, perhaps because they really don't want to think about how truly insignificant the Tampa Bay area is in the whole national scheme
of things, baseball or otherwise. 

(And that's in NOT adding southern Orlando or certain Polk County residents to Tampa Bay's overall population to make it seem larger, as I have seen some places, as if to justify the current situation.)

The problem with the Rays isn't with the location of the stadium, it's the location of the team.
(Just like with the NFL's Jacksonville Jaguars.)
I don't think it matters where the Rays stadium is, the team won't draw enough fans regardless of where you place the stadium.

This is completely unlike the situation with the Orioles and their shift from Memorial Stadium to Camden Yards, making it much more attractive and reasonable to Washington area fans to go during the week.

Along with two friends, we controlled four seats for an Oriole 17-game mini-season ticket plan for the first 8-9 years of them playing near the Inner Harbor, and I personally went to 20-25 home games a year (out of 81) despite living in Arlington County, though those long weeknight games and the drive home to Northern Virginia often made me useless at work the next
morning until I'd had enough coffee with hazelnut cream to mellow me out, i.e. around 10:45.

In my opinion, Charlotte, Nashville and San Antonio would all do a better job of consistently drawing baseball fans on a yearly basis simply because there are MORE middle-class income people living within 45 minutes of wherever they put the stadium, because there are more middle- management jobs there to begin with. Period.

Those cities have a more diversified economy than the St.Pete/Tampa area and greatly benefit from that.
Tampa Bay is what it is, but diversified it is not, just like South Florida over-dependence on tourism and real estate.


 @fieldofschemes  https://twitter.com/fieldofschemes  

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