Top Menu

Manfred Discusses Rays Ballpark Search

Tampa Bay Rays

During a conference on Monday, Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred discussed the Tampa Bay Rays ongoing search for a new ballpark. 

For much of this year, the Rays have been fielding pitches for ballpark proposals in both Pinellas and Hillsborough counties. That process has yielded numerous options, but the many of the key specifics–including where the ballpark will be located and how it will be funded–remained unresolved.

It is no secret that the Rays and MLB desire a modern venue to replace Tropicana Field. When discussing the process during a Q&A at the George Washington University School of Business, Manfred expressed some optimism that, with a new ballpark, the Rays would thrive in the Tampa Bay area. He also cited some of the region’s strengths, including its TV market.

However, Manfred was also clear in stating that he wants to see a solution sooner rather than later. The commissioner’s comments do not invoke a specific deadline, but he discussed his hope that there will be an “end game in the process. Here are some of his remarks, via the Tampa Bay Times:

“I think getting, not only a new facility, but a facility that is more appropriately located within the Tampa-St. Pete market would be good.

“Ultimately, there has to be an end game. If in fact, there’s not a site or there’s not a financial arrangement that’s viable and we become convinced of that, our rules allow for the possibility of relocation.

“At that point of desperation, it’s possible a team would be allowed to relocate.”

Manfred has been clear that he wants to see the ballpark issues of the Rays and Oakland A’s resolved sooner rather than later. Like the A’s, the Rays have made an active search in their current market, but Manfred’s comments certainly imply that relocation could be at least be a fallback option if the Rays come up short in their search in the Tampa Bay area.

RELATED STORIES: Rays Connected to Montreal MoveHillsborough County Mulls Funding of Rays BallparkHillsborough County Pushing for RaysOldsmar Proposes Rays BallparkHKS Tweaks Plan for Tropicana Field SiteOldsmar Making Push for RaysHillsborough Nearing High Tourism Impact StatusBallpark Pitched for Tropicana Field SiteIs it Time to Start Eliminating Potential Rays Ballpark Sites?Separating Wheat From Chaff in Tampa Bay Ballpark Search; Pinellas County Expanding Rays Ballpark SearchPinellas County Throws 10 Sites into Rays Ballpark MixRays: Single-Deck Ballpark, Non-Traditional Seating PossibleRays, Politicos Discuss Nine Potential Ballpark Sites; Tampa Bay Rays: We want urban ballpark; Talking new Rays ballpark: roof, tech and more; Tampa mayor pitches downtown Rays ballpark; St. Pete to allow Rays to search in region for new ballpark site;St. Pete: Rays could leave by 2020 for $33 million; Sternberg: Rays still believe in Tampa Bay;Sternberg: Rays ballpark search will proceed;Rays, St. Pete continue ballpark relocation talks;Most county-board candidates indicate support for new Rays ballpark in Tampa; Time running out on key Rays funding component; New year, new day for new Rays ballpark?; Foster: MLB looking for reason to flee Tampa Bay; Residents: Let Rays buy out Trop lease, move to Tampa;Selig: No updates on Rays ballpark situation; Rays: We won’t buy out Trop lease on St. Pete’s terms; St. Pete mayor: Talks with Rays going poorly;Poll: little support for public funding of new Rays ballpark

, , ,