Manfred To Arizona Lawmakers Send Money For A Baseball Stadium

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The team’s lease with Phoenix ends in 2027.

Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred is doing whatever it takes to please his bosses, the 30 MLB owners, in terms of lobbying for public funding to either build new stadiums or renovate existing facilities. Manfred did not exactly take a victory lap after Nevada politicians found money to help fund and build Oakland Athletics’ owner John Fisher a ballpark in Las Vegas. There are other problem areas. Manfred and his office have told Wisconsin lawmakers to spend money to renovate Milwaukee’s stadium or you might lose your local MLB team. Manfred is also going after not only Arizona lawmakers looking for money to build the Arizona owner Ken Kendrick a new stadium but voters as well. It seems Manfred is not happy with Tempe, Arizona voters who turned down a chance to build an arena in town for the National Hockey League’s Arizona franchise. Kendrick’s lease to use the Phoenix-owned venue ends in 2027. Manfred is on the job, lobbying Arizona politicians.

“Whenever you get near the end of a lease, you get yourself into a situation where what I regard to be public assets right, a stadium is a public asset there’s going to need to be updating. I think that Ken Kendrick has indicated a willingness to fulfill his side of sort of the public/private partnership to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars. I’m hopeful that whatever went on with the Coyotes is not an indication of a lack of public support to fulfill the public part of that partnership to keep the Arizona facility a first-class major league facility.” Manfred knows this, you put a vote on spending money for a sports facility before voters, it’s going to lose 95 percent of the time as it is a matter of record. Arizona is next on Manfred’s docket.

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Arizona Diamondbacks (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)