The two city thing is never going to happen because the owners of the team decided to move the team slowly so that they wouldn’t make waves with MLB.
I think this is just a way for the owner to control how he can move the team, keep an interest, and bring on other people.
He wants to go to his new location while MLB is out of the way.
The ownership group is in place, they have lots of money, and they have a site for a stadium that will work, so anyone who has been paying attention knows that Montreal is ready to take on a team again.
The split season thing is a ruse to make the move happen without selling out.
The current largest market in the US/Canada without a MLB team is Montreal, which would become the largest market in the US without a baseball team if the team moved to the city.
A Montreal team in the American League East is projected to be successful, with road attendance coming from fans of the other teams in the division.
The MLB doesn’t want national TV ratings to suffer because of the no longer having a team in the area.
It is hard to believe that Stuart Sternberg thought of this idea, as he is one of baseballs smartest owners.
None of the governments involved have the public support needed to shell out a billion dollars or more to build a stadium and just give it to the teams.
The proposal to build a new one in the Ybor City district didn’t work because of the lack of will to spend a billion dollars.
Montreal is so eager to get baseball back that it will spend the money for a stadium even if it is just for half a season, according to baseball’s “brains”.
The Olympic stadium never really was finished, despite huge cost overruns, despite the fact that Montreal paid off all of the debts they ran up to bring in the 1976 Olympics.
When the players went on strike in 1994 during a great run by perhaps the best Expos team ever, it really put a damper on the city’s enthusiasm for baseball. I’m not sure that after being so badly burned financially and emotionally that Montreal is ready to get back in.
This idiotic idea is an attempt to pressure the powers that are in the Tampa Bay area to come up with a viable plan, so I am sure with a minimal or zero contribution from Sternberg.
If I know it will work.
It might not be very cost effective to split the season between the two cities.