Tuesday, November 20, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Sports Illustrated on Rays stadium: If they build it, they should pay for it

As the Rays revealed their dream ballpark with hopes to make Tampa a baseball destination in the future, it came with a hefty price tag. A price tag of almost a billion dollars.

Rays team president Brian Auld said the team doesn't have answers as to how they will fund the dream, and Jon Tayler at Sports Illustrated says the public should not be on the hook for millions.

RELATED: Your first look at Rays new stadium renderings

The modern stadium in historical Ybor City can result in the same future for residents of other cities who have completed new ball parks in the past decade. Tayler said the projects in Washington D.C., New York, Minneapolis, Miami and Atlanta have caused taxpayers to hand over money to "absurdly rich owners, all whom cried poor when time came to pay," while they could have improved local infrastructure or better salaries for civil servants.

Rays principal owner Stuart Sternberg said he expects the team to contribute more than $150 million toward the $892 million ball park.

Private financing and local businesses will unlikely bring in more than a few hundred million, says Tayler, which can leave about as much as half a billion to the county.

The city is funding transportation and education departments and trying to trim its budget by more than $31 million in the upcoming year. Tayler said Tampa will likely not receive any help from the state, which has stated its opposition to the public funding of stadiums, acknowledging the more than one billion dollars hanging over Miami after the Marlins park.

RELATED: Joe Henderson: Road to new Rays stadium will be a wild ride

Auld proposed that the Ybor City stadium will serve as a year-round park and facility for residents, turning a ball park pitch into a community pitch, but Tayler said the theory has been proven wrong and there is "no financial justification for sinking taxpayer money into athletic facilities."

Even though Forbes lists the team's worth as nearly a billion dollars, and the Rays' TV deal has them reeling in $82 million a year over the next 15 years, their payroll is just $91 million. With their failure to invest in their roster, Tayler questions whether the franchise deserves the public's investment.

Tropicana Field limits the team's ability to compete and their attendance is consistently low in the league, and relocation to Ybor City in a smaller, more intimate stadium is sparking interest in fans, but according to Tayler, the stadium's progress should not rely on the public's pockets.

Comments
A look at Rays 40-man roster with deadline approaching

A look at Rays 40-man roster with deadline approaching

With the Rays and all other teams working toward the 8 p.m. deadline to add prospects and set their rosters in advance of the Dec. 13 Rule 5 draft, here is a look at their current 39 players.The Rays are expected to trade or drop at least three more ...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Rays start roster shuffle, trade Chih-Wei Hu to Indians

Rays start roster shuffle, trade Chih-Wei Hu to Indians

Deadline to protect prospects from December Rule 5 draft is Tuesday night, and Rays have 4-6 worth considering.
Published: 11/19/18
Early ESPN schedule gives Rays a wave of the hand

Early ESPN schedule gives Rays a wave of the hand

A bit early, ESPN today released its coverage plans for the first couple weeks of the 2019 season.And of those 14 games slated for national broadcasts, guess how many include the Tampa Bay Rays, who are coming off a 90-win season that proved them to ...
Published: 11/19/18
Mariano Rivera heads new names on Hall of Fame ballot; ex-Ray Fred McGriff in final year

Mariano Rivera heads new names on Hall of Fame ballot; ex-Ray Fred McGriff in final year

All-time saves leader Mariano Rivera headlines the 20 newcomers to the 2019 Hall of Fame ballot released Monday.The Yankees great is expected to get near unanimous support from the 400-plus voting members of the Baseball Writers' Association of Ameri...
Published: 11/19/18
Rays weekend transactions: A Faria wedding, a Schultz baby

Rays weekend transactions: A Faria wedding, a Schultz baby

Some Rays were busy off the field in the last week, with RHP Jake Faria getting married and RHP Jaime Schultz becoming a dad.Faria and longtime girlfriend Jessica Soto got married over the weekend in California.Mr. and Mrs. Faria!! pic.twitter.com/YF...
Published: 11/19/18
Winning by losing: How ex-Ray Nathan Eovaldi sparked Red Sox to World Series title

Winning by losing: How ex-Ray Nathan Eovaldi sparked Red Sox to World Series title

Nathan Eovaldi's effort — 97 pitches over six innings — galvanized the team and drew praise from manager Joey Cora.
Published: 11/19/18
Rays Tales: Does Blake Snell’s Cy Young salvage the 2011 draft?

Rays Tales: Does Blake Snell’s Cy Young salvage the 2011 draft?

For all the misses the Rays had in the 2011 draft, Snell has been a pretty big hit. Is that enough?
Published: 11/17/18
Cubs/ex-Rays manager Joe Maddon again helping Tampa Bay area homeless with Thanksmas events

Cubs/ex-Rays manager Joe Maddon again helping Tampa Bay area homeless with Thanksmas events

Maddon and his Respect 90 Foundation will provide PDQ meals, backpacks and socks at several area centers.
Published: 11/15/18
Updated: 11/16/18
Rays Cy Young winner Blake Snell shares a secret to his success

Rays Cy Young winner Blake Snell shares a secret to his success

Blake Snell had special thanks for Kyle Snyder, who has been his pitching coach and confidant at several levels.
Published: 11/15/18
What they’re saying about Rays Blake Snell winning the AL Cy Young award

What they’re saying about Rays Blake Snell winning the AL Cy Young award

Here was the scene at Blake Snell's house in Seattle when they got news of his victory:The moment @snellzilla4 and his crew got the #CyYoung news. pic.twitter.com/iIukJZlHL5— MLB (@MLB) November 14, 2018Here is what some of Snell's teammates ha...
Published: 11/15/18