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JDC

Major League Baseball in the Triangle?

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Seeing how the Triangle has grown (look how big you've gotten!), wouldn't it be appropriate to bring another pro sports franchise to the region?

The way I see it, The Tampa Bay Devil Rays (whose AAA affiliate is the Durham Bulls) have been a lackluster team year in and year out and hardly ever get a decent crowd at home games. With all the expansion in this area, why not get the D-Rays out of Tampa, bring 'em on over to Durham, and call them the Bulls? The DBAP would certainly need more seating and higher ticket prices if they want to be competitive though.

Of course the chances of this happening in the not-too-distant future (if ever) are slim, isn't it nice to dream? I mean they brought an NHL franchise to the Triangle, right?

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It seems like the big problem with baseball is that they play 900 games in a 3 month period, so they have to play several weekday afternoon games during the Summer. I think they would struggle to get >5000 people for something like that. Maybe I'm wrong. I just think there isn't the interest in MLB here.

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I always thought if NC were to get another big league team, it would be baseball and why not Raleigh? I think it would do great.

As far as pro-sprots are concerned, I don't think anything other than baseball would work. The Panthers and Redskins fill the market for football. UNC, Duke, NCSU and the Bobcats got the roundball covered. We already have the hockey...

It sure would hurt the Mudcats though. I think the Bulls would still do fine. I would think making the Bulls a pro-team would be a good idea. I sure would like to see it in Raleigh though. The Dix campus would be an awesome location for a ballpark with outfield views of downtown.

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NC will not get another pro sports team. The Bobcats (UNC basketball games have more of a draw) have pretty much been a bust and same could probably be said for the Hurricanes although they are doing better this season as far as attendance. Durham Bulls games at $6 are fine by me.

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You don't think teams like Atlanta or New York would not bring a crowd? With all of the transplants here, I think it would work. I know I would go.

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I would definately go! I get tired of driving out of town for stuff. Raleigh is more than armed to take on the MLB. The NHL is more of a NE thing, but baseball is immaculate for this area, not only for it's demographic, but also for because of the warm climate.

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It seems like the big problem with baseball is that they play 900 games in a 3 month period, so they have to play several weekday afternoon games during the Summer. I think they would struggle to get >5000 people for something like that. Maybe I'm wrong. I just think there isn't the interest in MLB here.

I agree with your assessment.

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You can't bring it to Raleigh. The idea is to have the oft-though fictitious Durham Bulls (from the movie) to be a "real team" (which they already are of course). It's like what they did with the Mighty Ducks in Anaheim. Plus, it would be a lot cheaper to add a few thousand seats to the DBAP than to build an entire new stadium in Raleigh. Then again, why argue about something that'll probably never happen.

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As a big baseball fan, and a big Bulls fan, there's nothing I'd like to see more than the Bulls promoted to the big leagues. And it may happen in the next few decades, but I'd say the odds are 50/50 and depend a lot on how much we continue to grow and how dense our population gets, and I don't think it'll happen in the next 10-20 years, more like 30-40 years out if we become a top 30 market.

If baseball expands again, to somethign like ~35 teams, we'd have a better shot, but as things stand right now Charlotte has a better chance of getting a MLB franchise because of the centralization there. But we do have some things going for us: there is a rich history of baseball in teh Carolinas and in the Carolina Leagues, and we do have right now the most famous minor-league team in the world. But...I won't be holding my breath.

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Awww...baseball in the Triangle? How great would that be! I, too, can see the Bulls one day becoming a MLB club. We will need to add another 500k to our population perhaps, but I don't see that being very far off. The Triangle, and NC as a whole, will be a market that's impossible to ignore in the years to come. It's the sunbelt and there will be a day when we're not considered a small pro sports market anymore.

That's one thing I think of sometimes though. My dad used to always take me to MLB games as a kid, and I still have great memories of those times. I would love to be able to take my kid to a Bulls game some day and have it as a major league team. Oh well, in the meantime we can enjoy American Tobacco District and getting some great BBQ at the games. I LOVE the Bulls!!

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Awww...baseball in the Triangle? How great would that be! I, too, can see the Bulls one day becoming a MLB club. We will need to add another 500k to our population perhaps, but I don't see that being very far off. The Triangle, and NC as a whole, will be a market that's impossible to ignore in the years to come. It's the sunbelt and there will be a day when we're not considered a small pro sports market anymore.

That's one thing I think of sometimes though. My dad used to always take me to MLB games as a kid, and I still have great memories of those times. I would love to be able to take my kid to a Bulls game some day and have it as a major league team. Oh well, in the meantime we can enjoy American Tobacco District and getting some great BBQ at the games. I LOVE the Bulls!!

Now we're talkin'!

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I don't want to sound like I'm throwing cold water on the idea but keep in mind that these days going to a MLB game will set you back >$100 by the time you buy 4 tickets, pay for parking, and get a hot dog+drink for your typical family of 4. The Bulls are quite a bargain by those standards!

Actually the Bulls stadium is already inadequate. The park was built after attendance increased (after the movie, as a matter of fact), but class A was more what they had in mind. I've seen AA ballparks with more seating. They had to add the outfield seats to allow them into AAA, but those seats are poor to actually see the game. The Richmond ballpark has a second deck -- you can see it when you drive by on I-95.

There was an attempt several years ago to get a MLB ballpark built in the Triad, but the vote to pass bonds for it failed.

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^^

I'm telling you, if they've mentioned Las Vegas or Portland as possibilities...and baseball already exists in Milwaukee and Cincinnati this can be a reality here. Our population is close now, and will exceed these locales in no time. Not to mention we don't have any teams in the state right now.

The stadium would need rebuilt I suppose though :(

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One thing to keep in mind is that MLB has no desire to expand-they have actually wanted to contract the league the past couple of years by eliminating Minnesota and Montreal. They decided to move the Expos to DC and Minnesota's fate is still up in the air.

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^^

I'm telling you, if they've mentioned Las Vegas or Portland as possibilities...and baseball already exists in Milwaukee and Cincinnati this can be a reality here. Our population is close now, and will exceed these locales in no time. Not to mention we don't have any teams in the state right now.

The stadium would need rebuilt I suppose though :(

Las Vegas' population is higher than the Triangle's and it continues to grow at a faster pace. As far as new markets for major league sports, Las Vegas is first in line. The Triangle to have a chance would need a major increase in the number of teams- 5 or so more.

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Las Vegas' population is higher than the Triangle's and it continues to grow at a faster pace. As far as new markets for major league sports, Las Vegas is first in line. The Triangle to have a chance would need a major increase in the number of teams- 5 or so more.

True, I know Vegas is the fastest-growing place on earth right now. I should have specified in reference to Cincinnati and Milwaukee, etc.

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True, I know Vegas is the fastest-growing place on earth right now. I should have specified in reference to Cincinnati and Milwaukee, etc.

Also don't forget about Norfolk here. We right now are the largest metro without a pro sports team.

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Isn't there a hesitation to put a team in Vegas because of gambling? I thought I heard this someplace before. Maybe the Pete Rose thing is still on some people's minds. Personally, I still think a MLB team here would rock!

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Raleigh has no chance to get another pro team. It just isn't big enough for baseball. Charlotte could be big enough in 5 or 10 years, but Charlotte is double raleigh's size, and Charlotte metro has atleast 500000 more people than the triange. Raleigh is the second smallest pro sports city(behind Green Bay). You are living in a pipe dream if you think Raleigh could get and keep a MLB team. Durham having a team would be a joke.

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I agree with you that we're kidding ourselves if we think the triangle can support a major league team. But I also think that Charlotte doesn't have what it takes to support a team long-term, either (and it probably still won't 5 or 10 years from now.) Just not enough people. Baseball teams play almost every day and half of the games are at home, and you need to draw a huge crowd (even if it doesn't pack the stands) for EVERY game in order to be a success.

That's why football, basketball, hockey, etc. can survive in smaller markets but baseball can't.

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Agreed. Charlotte can't even support minor league baseball as the Knights has had one of the lowest attendance numbers for AAA teams year after year.

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NC will not get another pro sports team. The Bobcats (UNC basketball games have more of a draw) have pretty much been a bust and same could probably be said for the Hurricanes although they are doing better this season as far as attendance. Durham Bulls games at $6 are fine by me.

The Bobcats haven't been a bust. They are averaging 16000 in their first 5 home games. For a team with only 3 wins, and one year out of expansion status, the numbers are quite good this year. Last year, the Bobcats had low attendance, not even the worst, but they missed the worst record by one win. After Charlotte had the NBA attendance record for 14 straight years, the city will be back among the best attendance in the NBA when the 'cats get better.

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