Author Topic: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast  (Read 7551 times)

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Offline RD

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #25: March 14, 2011, 11:22:22 PM »
Florida is a ling weekend, To justify going out to Dulles to fly to Arizona, would mean a real vacation, and for a lot of fans that isn't worth it

It works on the flip side as well.

Just using myself as an example, it's a full vacation from California to Florida. Not necessarily worth the time or the cash for me to do it.

In Arizona, it's a long weekend, or even multiple weekends. I know Id have six or seven friends with me on each trip. It's only 5-6 hours away.

With Strasburg and Harper, you'll probably find a lot more casual fans on the West Coast interested in going to check them out as well.

Offline Ali the Baseball Cat

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #26: March 15, 2011, 12:31:02 AM »
I guess since US Air absorbed America West there have been lots of nonstops from DCA to Phoenix. I still hate that state, but at least it is easy to fly to.

Offline Obed_Marsh

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #27: March 15, 2011, 07:12:11 AM »
Direct flights to Phoenix predate the America West merger. At one point, I was going back and forth every other week between Sacramento and D.C. for a year. The two airports I always pulled were Phoenix and Los Vegas. After the merger, they did get much more plentiful.

Offline MarquisDeSade

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #28: March 15, 2011, 08:41:36 AM »
At one point, I was going back and forth every other week between Sacramento and D.C. for a year.

Ugh, you have my sympathy.

Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #29: March 15, 2011, 08:44:09 AM »
Irish/Scottish fusion bar. Sometimes live music. Classic dive bar. Dollar bills on the walls from all the over world and friendly locals. Real darts, a pool table, a few other games. Twenty or so different taps. The outside like a generic cement building, except what they have painted on it, but inside a pretty rocking Irish/Scottish bar. You wouldn't want to miss it.

This place looks ridiculously like my style. I am going to check it out sometime in the next few days.

Offline Obed_Marsh

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #30: March 15, 2011, 04:40:31 PM »
Ugh, you have my sympathy.

I am thrilled that stage of my career is over. At this point, I have a trip at most once a week for a single day of meetings and the rest of the time I work at home. I did lose my Chairmen's Platinum Elite Status with U.S. Airways but honestly I took as a badge of shame anyway. At least this way there is something closer to a normal life.

Taking it back to baseball, I am guessing I got a much better shot at last minute weekday games this year than in the past.

This place looks ridiculously like my style. I am going to check it out sometime in the next few days.

Let me know what you think. I suspect we have similar taste in bars but this is a good way to find out.

Offline 1995hoo

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #31: March 15, 2011, 06:09:58 PM »
My wife's sister lives up the street from Space Coast Stadium in the "Sonoma" neighborhood you pass just to the south of I-95 on Stadium Parkway. She loves the idea of the Nationals leaving because of the traffic. I'd hate the idea of losing the free place to stay if we go down there for a game.


Regarding Arizona, several people have mentioned "direct" flights from Reagan. FWIW, a "direct" flight is not the same thing as a "nonstop" flight when you deal with the airlines. US Air operate nonstops from Reagan to Phoenix, but if you ask for a "direct" flight, you may get a flight that lands somewhere en route (Southwest, in particular, are notorious for this). All "direct" means is that you do not change planes en route, regardless of the number of stops. With Southwest it's not all that unusual to hop from somewhere on the East Coast to Chicago–Midway to either St. Louis or Houston to Phoenix, all on the same plane such that the airline considers it a "direct flight."

(The reason this matters is because you have to be careful when you deal with the airlines. They don't care that many people mistakenly consider "direct" and "nonstop" to be synonymous....)

Offline GburgNatsFan

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #32: March 15, 2011, 08:32:21 PM »
BWI has several a day. But going with kids... it would cost a lot.


National has direct flights to Phoenix, AZ. The issue is it adds $300-500, extra flight time, and some time zone inconvenience. It is the family multiplier that is the killer here. It won't stop me from going but I am sure it would stop some people in the D.C. and the more people who grow up on this team, including the Spring Training experience, the better.  

Offline Obed_Marsh

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #33: March 15, 2011, 08:36:54 PM »
Too many Nats fans drive or take the autotrain down and that means more people can go. Force everyone to fly and we'll get fewer fans going. That is bad news.

Offline OldNatsFan

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #34: March 16, 2011, 09:50:37 AM »
I've been driving down every year from Virginia to see a few games and hang out at Cocoa Beach. Just got back home Monday. I hope they don't move anytime soon.

Offline Galah

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #35: March 16, 2011, 11:50:54 AM »
Ditto, too convenient for me, and Viera has been growing up rather nicely around the park.

Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #36: March 19, 2011, 02:17:19 PM »
Irish/Scottish fusion bar. Sometimes live music. Classic dive bar. Dollar bills on the walls from all the over world and friendly locals. Real darts, a pool table, a few other games. Twenty or so different taps. The outside like a generic cement building, except what they have painted on it, but inside a pretty rocking Irish/Scottish bar. You wouldn't want to miss it.

The other bar to check out is the "Mermaid Bar" near Florida Today on the Indian river. It is less than ten minutes away from the stadium. As the night gets later, the more it turns into a singles bar but definitely a fun place too. Outside on the water or inside with the tunes.

Also if you are headed in the direction of Melbourne, try the Indian River Coffee company if you have any love for flavored coffee; the Nutty Nut/Santa's Helper is to die for...

I am at this moment sitting in the Thistle enjoying a pint. Awesome place, thank you!

Offline Obed_Marsh

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #37: March 19, 2011, 04:42:05 PM »
I am at this moment sitting in the Thistle enjoying a pint. Awesome place, thank you!

Excellent! Enjoy. :)

Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #38: March 19, 2011, 07:03:22 PM »
Place was the shiz. Got absolutely trashed earlier today. Thank God the camp site is only six or seven miles away from it.

Had to buy the bar t-shirt.

Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #39: March 21, 2011, 08:42:23 AM »
An NQ follow up on the current state of baseball on the Space Coast and how the Nationals are the one team that will ultimately decide its fate:

The Nationals Hold A Grapefruit Shaped Bomb In Their Hands - http://www.natsnq.com/?p=5437

Offline tomterp

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #40: March 21, 2011, 09:01:52 AM »
Nice piece, on the mark regarding the knock-on effect a Nats move would have on the other remaining teams and the east coast.

Offline sportsfan882

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #41: March 21, 2011, 09:08:04 AM »
Good article indeed. What would you suggest the Nats do, NOTLD? Could you blame them for wanting to go to Arizona? I think it would be good for the organization and team even though it would be disappointing for the folks in Viera.

Offline PowerBoater69

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #42: March 21, 2011, 09:36:39 AM »
An NQ follow up on the current state of baseball on the Space Coast and how the Nationals are the one team that will ultimately decide its fate:

The Nationals Hold A Grapefruit Shaped Bomb In Their Hands - http://www.natsnq.com/?p=5437


Nice piece.  The Atlantic coast had the teams and failed to keep them; had the same offers been made for each team that left, I expect most would have stayed.  So if the pretty young waitress loses her job, it won't be the Lerner family to blame, it will be the citizens of the eastern coast cities who did not approve big bucks for new spring training ballparks.

Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #43: March 21, 2011, 09:38:02 AM »
Good article indeed. What would you suggest the Nats do, NOTLD? Could you blame them for wanting to go to Arizona? I think it would be good for the organization and team even though it would be disappointing for the folks in Viera.

Ultimately, though it pains me to say it, I think the Nationals should move to the West Coast of Florida. The Grapefruit League needs to converge on one part of the state just like the Cactus League does in Phoenix. It is the only way Spring Training baseball will survive in Florida and if they can do it maybe eventually they could even lure some teams back.

If the Space Coast is serious about keeping the Nationals (the Mets, Cards, Fish as well) I think they need to sweeten the pot. Upgrade Space Coast Stadium or build a new stadium. Negotiate. Deal them. Give the Nats an offer they either can't refuse or would make them think twice. This area is living in a state of baseball terror right now and are plump for the kill. Nats could seriously rake if they play their cards right, but I get an overall sense they aren't poker players.

The Nats moving to Arizona would be absolutely insane. Why you would cut yourself off from your own fan base? True, the Nats are the second worse draw in the Grapefruit League, but can you imagine what they will draw in Arizona? Who in their right mind is going to go pay to see a Nats ST game in Arizona over there? I know a bunch of people are like, "Oh, I will fly to Arizona to see them." Yeah, sure. I'll have to see it to believe it first and I can guarantee you that it will kill any chance people who are on the 50-yard line about attending Spring Training will do so. The Dodgers moved from Vero Beach in 2008 and cast aside a rich history in Vero. But they did it to get closer to their fans, not run away from them.

My fear is the Lerners are thinking like real estate moguls and once again not taking into consideration the fans. A move to Arizona would only further alienate the Washington fan base and cause further distrust in the organization.

Offline PowerBoater69

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #44: March 21, 2011, 09:47:28 AM »
Nats could seriously rake if they play their cards right, but I get an overall sense they aren't poker players.

Kasten has publicly expressed interest in just about every option short of having the Nats train here in DC.  He used that leverage to get a number of improvements to Space Coast made a couple years back.  I'd say they're playing their cards for everything they can get.

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #45: March 21, 2011, 11:24:39 AM »
If the Space Coast is serious about keeping the Nationals (the Mets, Cards, Fish as well) I think they need to sweeten the pot. Upgrade Space Coast Stadium or build a new stadium. Negotiate. Deal them. Give the Nats an offer they either can't refuse or would make them think twice. This area is living in a state of baseball terror right now and are plump for the kill. Nats could seriously rake if they play their cards right, but I get an overall sense they aren't poker players.
If the county built a new stadium for the Nats elsewhere in the county, it could then upgrade Space Coast and lure another team there.  Two teams start to have critical mass.  Fort Myers was not a player until it got two teams there. 

Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #46: March 21, 2011, 11:40:21 AM »
If the county built a new stadium for the Nats elsewhere in the county, it could then upgrade Space Coast and lure another team there.  Two teams start to have critical mass.  Fort Myers was not a player until it got two teams there. 

Great idea!

Offline Baseball is Life

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #47: March 21, 2011, 12:20:44 PM »
I'm strongly suspect the Nats are using AZ for negotiationg leverage. They would be out of their minds to risk losing all those people who drive or shoot down for a long weekend from DC. If they did move to AZ, it would qualify as the stupidest thing they've done since moving to DC! And that's saying something.

Offline PowerBoater69

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #48: March 21, 2011, 01:04:48 PM »
If the county built a new stadium for the Nats elsewhere in the county, it could then upgrade Space Coast and lure another team there.  Two teams start to have critical mass.  Fort Myers was not a player until it got two teams there. 

They're not going to do something like this on spec, they'd have to have a contract in place for a team to move to Viera, and right now Houston is the only team I can think of that would even entertain such an idea.

As NotLD stated, Arizona is a bluff.  I see the most likely solution being a combined ballpark with Houston right off of I-4 in Kissimmee.  Of course that could just be wishful thinking.

Offline tomterp

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Re: The Future Of Baseball On The Space Coast
« Reply #49: April 08, 2011, 09:35:22 AM »
John Perrotto, BP, April 4:

http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=13429

Quote
The Nationals plan to leave their spring training facility in Viera after their lease runs out in 2013 and have their eye on getting a new complex built elsewhere in Florida, either in the Orlando area or on the Gulf Coast.