Montreal MLB Backers Still On The Outside Looking In

Stand in line and be quiet.



There was a stir in the world of Major League Baseball when the Montreal Group announced the results of a study that was conducted by Conventions, Sports and Leisure International which revealed people in and around the Montreal market would like to see Major League Baseball return to the area. Montreal Mayor Valerie Plante is on board too with having Major League Baseball in town but Plante has not backed off her pledge that ultimately it would be Montreal voters who would decide if they want to put up loonies to help build a baseball facility for a team. There was some artificially created excitement triggered by the release of a study that pretty much said what Montreal baseball backers wanted to read. But Montreal is still in the same place it was in 2005 after the Major League Baseball owned Expos franchise was relocated to Washington, D.C. Montreal is still on the outside looking in.

For Montreal to get a team, either through relocation or expansion, there are a number of factors outside of the control of Stephen Bronfman and Mitch Garber’s Montreal Group and Mayor Plante that have to be solved. Major League Baseball owners set the agenda and Major League Baseball needs to solve stadium problems in two markets, the San Francisco Bay Area and Tampa Bay. There seems to be some thought that Oakland A’s ownership is moving closer to building a new stadium somewhere in the city. But the saga of the A’s stadium development has gone on for years and there has been no solution. Tampa Bay Rays owners, locked into a long term stadium lease in St. Petersburg, need a new park. The collective bargaining agreement ends in 2021. Expansion is collectively bargained with the players. For scheduling purposes, MLB needs two cities. Montreal baseball supporters have a long wait.