BOB: Pohlad eyes land around Twins’ proposed stadium

Twins Owner Shopping For Land Near Prospective Stadium

It looks like Minnesota Twins owner Carl Pohlad isn’t satisfied with the stadium deal he secured from the Minnesota legislature last year because he’s now looking to pick up land around the prospective ballpark for development. He has his eyes set on the Ford Centre, an 11-story office building that’s located across the street from where the new stadium is going up. No word on what Pohlad plans to do with the $7.6 million building if he buys it.

The other interesting piece of news coming out of this story is that it looks like the Twins will be recouping some of money that they were on the hook for infrastructure costs to develop the surrounding area. Instead of the team just putting up cash to help with the infrastructure costs, they’ll now recoup some of the funds through parking revenue derived from a parcel of land near the Ford Centre. It turns out that the sharing of the costs is more like a loan from the Twins, as opposed to the contribution that was expected.

Indians Closer to Spring Training Move

The city of Goodyear, Ariz. recently passed seven agreements that will help pave the way for the Cleveland Indians’ spring training move to the Grand Canyon State. Bonds were issued and a developer was given the thumbs up to begin construction of a spring training complex that, if things work as planned, will host the Indians beginning in 2009. There were also agreements passed on a ballpark village that will surround the spring training complex, and there are even hopes that at some point in the future the facilities will house a second major league team for spring training.

Secondary Ticket Market Scores Victory In New York

As the secondary ticket market becomes more and more profitable, the teams are trying their best to curtail the practice, or at the very least, get a piece of the pie. Teams like the Yankees have even gone as far as revoking season tickets if they find out that the tickets were sold on the secondary market. That was, until the state of New York passed a bill that could cause them to rethink their plans.

Prior to the new bill, New York residents weren’t allowed to sell tickets for more than 45% of face value. Now, the sky is the limit. The bill doesn’t reverse the rule that makes it illegal to sell your ticket within 1,500 feet of the stadium, but it does contain provisions that block teams from punishing ticket holders from selling their tickets on the secondary market.

It’s going to be very interesting how this plays out. One solution for the teams is to just raise prices, but then they might find that season ticket sales go down dramatically. What might work best is to give ticket holders incentives to sell their tickets through a means that the team prefers. The question is, what kind of incentives would they give out? For now though, it looks like some states are stepping in to help protect the consumer.

Blackout Rules Update

This topic comes from a question I received and it definitely is worth discussin. One of the biggest gripes about the MLB.TV package is the seemingly arbitrary blackout rules that are applied. While it might seem straightforward if you live in a city where there’s a major league team, it’s less clear in certain parts of the country that are subject to overlapping broadcast territories.

This was supposed to be brought up at the last owners’ meeting and while it probably was, there was no resolution because it’s not high on the league’s list of priorities. While the approval of the baseball network and the sale of the Braves made the news, I wasn’t able to find anything on the status of the blackout rules. Maury Brown opined on the subject and while he thinks something will eventually happen, it’s not going to happen anytime soon. Is Back In Business

For the past few months, there hasn’t been much activity at SABR’s Business of Baseball committee website. That’s now changed because, with a dedicated group of committee members, the site has been redone and updates should be made daily or at the very least, regularly. Over time, there will be more and more additions to the site such as documents and some recommended reading but for now, if you want to keep up on the latest news, be sure to stop by.

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