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Diamondbacks, Maricopa Co. Dispute Goes to Arbitration

Arizona DiamondbacksA Superior Court judge ordered the Arizona Diamondbacks and Maricopa County to settle their differences over the condition of Chase Field before an arbitrator, instead of going to court.

The Diamondbacks, backed up by MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred, say Maricopa County has failed to perform contractually obligated maintenance at Chase Field and seeking to break the current lease. Of course, it’s more complicated than this brief summary, but you get the idea.

The two sides could not even agree on how to handle the airing of their grievances: the Diamondbacks were going for a court trial, but the county argued the lease mandated arbitration — a cheaper and potentially quicker way of settling differences. Judge Karen Mullins sided with the court and ordered arbitration to be completed before the end of the year. From the Arizona Republic:

“Resolving this dispute through arbitration is better for the taxpayers, rather than using expensive litigation,” Grady Gammage, an attorney representing the county stadium district, said in a written statement.

“The Court did a complete review of the contract between the Diamondbacks and the County Stadium District and the ruling is a thorough analysis of the arbitration provisions,” he said.

County officials also noted that Mullins wrote that the team is “obligated under the (agreements) to play all games at the Ballpark. Allowing the team to pursue alternative options or partnerships does not preserve the status quo of that obligation.”

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