Top Menu

Lee County, Nats to meet about spring training

Washington NationalsReps from the Washington Nationals and Lee County will meet today to discuss the team shifting spring-training operations to Fort Myers’ City of Palms Park.

We don’t expect anything big to come from the discussions; the two are just a third into a 90-day exclusive negotiating period. Both sides have made their goals public: the Nats are interested in City of Palms Park if Lee County will spring for ballpark improvements, including new practice fields onsite and a better connection to downtown, while Lee County would love to see the Nats move if funds can be found. The county has applied for $15 million in state funds to improve Hammond Stadium, spring home of the Twins, which (surprise!) would free up the same exact amount of tourism-tax funds for City of Palms Park improvements.

It’s a balancing act: Lee County must keep the Minnesota Twins happy at Hammond Stadium, as the Twins have asked for $60 million in ballpark improvements and have been a pretty loyal tenant, even when the Boston Red Sox received over $75 million in new-ballpark funds forJetBlue Park. Whether the county can afford $60 million to keep the Twins and many tens of millions remains to be seen; there’s probably not enough in the tourism-tax pot for both.

RELATED STORIES: Lee County applying for state ballpark-improvement grantLerner: Fort Myers is tops on our spring-training wish listGammons: Nats present spring-training wish list to Lee CountyIs Nats, Brevard County marriage over?Nats go public with desire for new spring-training facilityNats, Astros eying new Osceola County spring-training complexCould Cards, Marlins leave Treasure Coast?Kasten: Nats definitely looking for new spring home


Share your news with the baseball community. Send it to us at

Are you a subscriber to the weekly Ballpark Digest newsletter? You can sign up for a free subscription at the Newsletter Signup Page.

Join Ballpark Digest on Facebook and on Twitter!

Follow Ballpark Digest on Google + and add us to your circles!

, , , , , , , , ,