Reactions have been strong since the City Council denied the Rays an opportunity to explore Pinellas and Hillsborough counties for a new stadium location.
If only it were that simple. The new deal would have also provided a termination clause for the current use agreement of Tropicana Field, at an affordable cost between $20-32 million, but allowed the Rays to keep 50% of the profits from the redevelopment of the land currently in use, 85 acres near Downtown St. Petersburg.
The line of questioning on those profits are what led to the Rays losing the Council vote. Here are some reactions from around the baseball world:
Tampa Bay Rays
And this was his physical reaction as the votes were tallied.
Rays owner Stu Sternberg
#rays Sternberg comment on St. Pete city council voting down stadium proposal: "Disappointing. We look forward to the 2015 season."— RMooneyTBO (@RMooneyTBO) December 19, 2014
Timid, given his previous claim that the Rays might be sold without a new stadium.
Mayor Rick Kriseman
It is disappointing that the St. Petersburg City Council rejected the progress and certainty that this agreement provided. St. Petersburg -- and the entire Tampa Bay region -- stands to lose our Major League Baseball team and receive nothing in return. This is an unfortunate outcome for St. Petersburg's taxpayers and for every fan of the Rays. - Facebook
Kriseman was the lead negotiator in the proposed deal, and was elected to office on a platform that prioritized allowing a Rays stadium search one year ago.
Up to Rays to incentivize St. Pete to cut 'em loose. City has a lease in place, and leverage, and is wisely using both.— Jonah Keri (@jonahkeri) December 18, 2014
For what it's worth, the council did unanimously agree to hold a workshop in which they'll discuss building #Rays a new stadium in St. Pete.— Adam Berry (@adamdberry) December 19, 2014
@jasoncollette I know, right? A buddy described it as the ex-girlfriend offering to consider still being friends after the breakup.— Adam Berry (@adamdberry) December 19, 2014
Tampa Bay Times Editorial
What is clear is that these council members failed to grasp the realities that have long framed this stadium issue. First, the Rays are a regional franchise and have to be able to look throughout their core market for stadium sites. Second, every year that passes without an agreement to let the franchise look in both counties increases the leverage for the Rays. Third, the Rays will not be playing in the outdated Tropicana Field to league-low crowds until the lease expires in 2027. And finally, when the Rays do leave for a city willing to see them as partners, St. Petersburg will not collect nearly the financial damages that some council members seem to think. - Tampa Bay Times
As noted by Noah Pransky, this craigslist add was on point, and already flagged for removal.
and the Ted Williams Museum inside Tropicana Field also chimed in on the Stadium Decision, though possibly not for long. Here's a screenshot of the tweet in case it's gone.
The original link is here.