Olbermann: Given Marlins' mess, Rays are a goner
One theory about the Marlins' latest breakup is that it will have a negative impact on the Rays' efforts to get a new stadium, as government officials and fans will be even less likely to consider any public support.
Keith Olbermann, on his mlb.com Baseball Nerd blog, says the fallout goes further, that it means the Rays are done not only in St. Petersburg but in Florida and are destined to move. Olbermann, who has held various network sports and news broadcast jobs, is a major baseball fan, and portrays himself as something of an insider. And, for what it's worth, he has some connection to Rays principal owner Stuart Sternberg, and was a guest of Rays officials at a game at Yankee Stadium in September.
Rays’ owner Stu Sternberg was already less than sanguine about getting significant scratch from the state and local governments for a new ballpark that is absolutely essential to his survival in Tampa/St. Petersburg. If he had any hopes left after the disastrously low crowds for the free ballpark the good burghers of Florida gave Jeffrey Loria, they have to be gone now and he has to be looking elsewhere.
Later, Olbermann writes:
But the biggest long-term implications are fairly simple: the franchise carousel, all but quiet since the upheaval of the 1953-72 era, will begin to spin again.
Miami has a slight chance of survival (that stadium is standing, and a mess of prospects can suddenly win a division – ask the Oakland A’s about that) but Tampa Bay is gone. One would assume that at the latest the season of 2020 opens without a Florida team in the majors.
Where do the Rays (and probably the Marlins) move?
His conclusion, by the way?