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Baseball fever in Portland a low-grade affair
2006-01-08 19:15
by Bob Timmermann

John Conzano writes in The Oregonian about Portland's rather diminished interest in getting the Florida Marlins to move there.

2006-01-09 10:28:31
1.   Voxter
As a long time resident of Portland, the idea of Major League Baseball there has never seemed like a great one to me. There are a lot of reasons for this, but really it comes down to:

1) It's just not a big enough city for a team to operate comfortably here; Portland comes with all the caveats and difficulties of every small market from Minneapolis to Tampa Bay -- with the added problem that the Mariners' market share is pretty high. You aren't solving any problems by coming here.

2) The State of Oregon has been in various stages of financial distress since the late 80s, when a deep property tax cut F'ed our budget in the A. Combined with the contemperaneous logging crash, and the subseqent bursting of the high tech bubble, Oregon's never been quite able to pull itself out of debt -- so getting public funding for a ballpark doesn't appear any more likely here than in Miami.

Aside from those two factors (which ought to be enough), Portland just ain't a sports town. Sure, we got Blazers fever back in the day of Clyde the Glide, but there's nothing like the loyal fanbase for any team, and that's a prerequisite to supporting a MLB franchise in a market that's roughly the same size as St Louis.

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