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Expansion Newsbeat

Tuesday, July 19, 2022

MLB expansion? MLBPA chief Tony Clark hopeful league can get to ‘a world of 32 teams’

“We are hopeful ... that we can find ourselves in a world of 32 teams rather than 30,” MLB Players’ Association executive director Tony Clark told reporters Tuesday, including the Los Angeles Times. That comes less than a month after commissioner Rob Manfred said he “would love to get to 32 teams” in an ESPN profile.

MLB last expanded in 1998, when the (Devil) Rays and Diamondbacks joined the league. We are currently in MLB’s longest expansion drought since the league first expanded in 1961. There are no shortage of viable expansion cities (Charlotte, Montreal, Nashville, Portland, Las Vegas, etc.) or prospective owners. Owning an MLB team is very lucrative and many people want in. 

The biggest issue standing in the way of expansion is the Athletics and Rays, specifically their ballpark situations. Manfred has said those two clubs need new stadiums before MLB can consider expanding. Part of that is leverage—MLB wants to continue using Las Vegas as a relocation option as Oakland seeks a new park in the Bay Area, for example—and part of it is just doing what’s right.

“The condition of the Coliseum is a really serious problem for us,” Manfred said Tuesday (per the Los Angeles Times). “(Approval for the Howard Terminal project) needs to happen now. It needs to be done. There needs to be a binding agreement done in Oakland quickly.”

Last year Manfred suggested MLB could seek an expansion franchise fee north of $2 billion, which would equal a massive cash infusion for the 30 current owners.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 19, 2022 at 04:20 PM | 45 comment(s)
  Beats: expansion



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