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Friday, October 04, 2019

Two Playoff Teams, Two New Stadiums and One Great Divide

Two maps tell the story.

First, John Schuerholz stared into a camera and stunned a city. Unflinching, the Braves’ GM turned president, whose teams had won 14 straight division titles, explained to Atlanta baseball fans on Nov. 11, 2013, that the club was abandoning the area just south of downtown, its home since 1966. No longer would the Braves play at Turner Field, where skyscrapers looming over left center made it feel as if the entire city was watching. Instead, the franchise would build a stadium 14 miles north, in Cobb County. “This new ballpark,” Schuerholz said of what would come to be called SunTrust Park, “will be in the heart of Braves Country.”

Accompanying the announcement, the team released a map showing where, precisely, Braves Country was—and, notably, where it wasn’t. That view of the greater Atlanta area was speckled with red dots, each one indicating the home of a 2012 ticket buyer, including season-ticket holders. Only a smattering of red appeared to the east, west and south of Turner Field, while thousands of dots congealed into a ribbon above downtown that expanded into a wide swath in the half-dozen suburban and exurban counties to the north. The new stadium would be closer to the middle of that mass, which happened to embody an older, whiter and more conservative population than the city proper. Those northern suburbs were fast diversifying, yet many in Atlanta—particularly in its black population—felt slighted by the decision, their perspectives colored by decades of racial and political tension between city and sprawl.

Five months later MLS commissioner Don Garber, Falcons owner Arthur Blank and then-mayor Kasim Reed proclaimed in their own press conference that downtown Atlanta would be home to MLS’s 22nd franchise, and the new club, Atlanta United, would take the pitch in 2017, the same year the Braves headed to Cobb. The soccer team would play in the same new $1.6 billion stadium the Falcons would soon call home, but United would be no afterthought. The facility would be designed to accommodate the beautiful game from the start. Pushing back against skepticism and pointing to an influx of young professionals near Atlanta’s urban core, Blank assured MLS’s leaders he could fill the massive venue, even in a market known for lukewarm enthusiasm toward pro sports. Reed boasted that his city’s foreign-born (and, seemingly implied, soccer-loving) population was growing at the second-fastest rate in the U.S. Garber himself insisted these factors combined to make downtown an ideal MLS incubator. The city “embodies what we call a ‘new America,’” he said, “an America that’s blossoming with ethnic diversity.”

A consideration of sport and space- of interest for those who wish for a long-form read.

 

 

QLE Posted: October 04, 2019 at 12:21 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, soccer, stadiums, suntrust park

Tuesday, October 01, 2019

OT- Soccer Thread- October 2019

Hey, when I have to submit the thread we get a bad intro, that’s just how it works.

jmurph Posted: October 01, 2019 at 01:55 PM | 460 comment(s)
  Beats: soccer

Monday, September 09, 2019

Do we even need minor league baseball?

A year before the closing of two affiliates, in March 2016, the Astros hired Jose Fernandez to be part of their sports science department. He had worked with pro soccer teams in Europe. European soccer giants have centralized training centers focused on building skills rather than a decentralized sprawl of affiliates. ...
“On site in Barcelona, they have their whole development academy, from the little kids all the way up to the professional teams. They have one big campus. They do everything on-site. Everything is coordinated. Everyone is doing the same drills. Everyone was being measured with the same technology. That makes a ton of sense,” the ex-Astros front official said.

Ziggy is done with Dominican discotheques Posted: September 09, 2019 at 12:03 PM | 78 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, minor leagues, soccer

Thursday, August 01, 2019

OT Soccer Thread - A New Season is Upon Baldrick

Everyone enjoy the break that was about 25 minutes long?  Anyway;

August 2 - Championship begins (Luton-Middlesbrough), Eridivise begins (Zwolle-Willem II)
August 3 - Scottish Premiership, League One, League Two begin
August 4 - Community Shield (Manchester City-Liverpool)
August 6 - Carabao Cup (Portsmouth-Birmingham City), Third round qualifying Champions League first legs
August 9 - EPL begins (Liverpool-Norwich City), Ligue Une begins (Monaco-Lyon)
August 16 - Bundesliga begins (Bayern-Hertha), La Liga begins (Athletic Bilbao-Barcelona)
August 29 - Champions League group stage draw
September 5 - All manner of World Cup and Euro qualifying international break begins

BTF FANTASY SOCCER COME ONE COME ALL (the link for the post now takes you to the signup page).

League name:  BTF Soccer

Code: my8hl1

Jose is an Absurd Time Cube Posted: August 01, 2019 at 06:46 PM | 911 comment(s)
  Beats: off topic, soccer

Friday, June 07, 2019

OT Soccer Thread - Baldrick Reports Live

Sum-sum-summertime thread.

June 7 (that’s today!) - Women’s World Cup.  BTF correspondent Baldrick is on the scene (link takes you to his preview of the tournament)
June 14 - Copa America begins (no Neymar)
June 15 - Gold Cup begins
June 18 - US first Gold Cup game
June 21 - Africa Cup of Nations begins
July 7 - Women’s World Cup Final/Copa America Final/Gold Cup Final - Can we get some discussion about the ridiculousness of the WWC being just one of a series of finals on the same day? Of note is that the Copa America final is the exact same time as the WWC final. 
July 19 - Africa Cup of Nations final

Jose is an Absurd Time Cube Posted: June 07, 2019 at 12:22 PM | 1414 comment(s)
  Beats: off topic, soccer

 

 

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