The Toronto Blue Jays are negotiating to play exhibition games in Montreal in the future, bringing Major League Baseball back to Olympic Stadium, the former home of the Montreal Expos.
Many MLB teams schedule a pair of exhibition games after spring training and before the regular season, and a two-game series of this nature is being discussed. One big issue: who would pay to bring the facility up to a level where a) baseball can be played and b) large crowds can be handled.
Olympic Stadium is still used for many events; despite some talk of demolition, the place regularly hosts events like car and RV shows and professional soccer. A return of MLB games would certainly bring forth much angst and fond memories, especially if the Blue Jays do something to honor the Expos (special pinwheel Blue Jays caps, anyone?). And, of course, there will be much discussion about whether or not Montreal could support MLB in the future. Warren Cromartie is leading an effort to determine the financial feasibility of Major League Baseball in the city. Indeed, once upon a time the Expos were among MLB leaders in attendance, and there's a rich tradition of pro baseball in the city, including Jackie Robinson's first MiLB season with the Montreal Royals.
Photo from the last Montreal Expos game at Olympic Stadium, Sept. 29, 2004. Yes, we were there.
RELATED STORIES: Cromartie: We're launching feasibility study on return of MLB to Montreal; Cromartie laying groundwork for return of MLB to Montreal; Conference board: Montreal can support MLB; More MLB dreams in Montreal; Montreal capable of supporting MLB -- if there's an owner with deep pockets
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