The Rays definitely like Ybor City, and Ybor City seems to like the Rays. So what could possibly come between this match made in baseball stadium heaven? Hundreds (and hundreds and hundreds) of millions of dollars. Rays owner Stu Sternberg told Times reporter Marc Topkin last week that the team is tentatively looking at contributing $150 million to a potential $800 million stadium price tag. At first blush, that number seems low. That would equal 18.75 percent of the proposed cost. Now there are outliers, but recent history shows the typical team paying 20 to 35 percent of the cost of a Major League Baseball stadium. If thatís the trend, the Rays should be somewhere in the $160-$280 million range. Numbers vary from source to source, but here are examples of recent stadium deals.
The Braves left downtown Atlanta for the suburbs this spring in a deal that has strained the budget in Cobb County. Total stadium costs are listed at $672 million, with the Bravesí cash contribution at $230 million. The public funds come from increased property taxes, along with hotel and rental car taxes.
Teamís contribution: in the range of 34 percent
In one of the most ridiculed deals in recent memory, Miami-Dade built a new ballpark with numerous parking garages for the Marlins in 2012. The total cost was $639 million with former Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria contributing $155 million. Hotel taxes will be used to pay for bonds.
Teamís contribution: about 24 percent
Hennepin County used a sales tax increase to come up with the bulk of the $545 million cost for Target Field, which opened in downtown Minneapolis in 2010. Twins ownership kicked in $195 million of the stadiumís cost.
Teamís contribution: close to 36 percent
This is an example of the cost of trying to lure a team to your city. Washington, D.C., got MLB to agree to move the Expos from Montreal by essentially footing the entire $670 million bill for Nationals Park. Some reports indicate the team and MLB kicked in $31 million.
Teamís contribution: less than 5 percent
The Cardinals are the rare MLB team that largely took on the cost of building its own stadium. While the state added $43 million in infrastructure costs, the Cardinals paid the bulk of the $411 million stadium that opened in 2006. The team did, however, get a loan from the county as well as $200 million in bonds.
Teamís contribution: most of the cost