10 Cities That Would Kill for for a Major League Baseball Franchise
Over recent years, there has been much more talk about contraction in Major League Baseball rather than further expansion, but in a time when baseball revenue is higher than ever, is it really that far out of the question to ask what baseball-less cities would be deserving of a new franchise?
Sure there are already 30 teams in Major League baseball representing 28 different cities, but think of all the quality cities across this vast country that could be great spots for America's pastime. Are we really to believe that there are only 28 cities worthy of Major League Baseball's presence?
So what cities would be great new baseball towns? What area would kill for a Major League Baseball franchise? What would these new teams be named? What would get people to the ballpark?
Here are the ten cities that would kill for a Major League Baseball team, and who knows, if Bud Selig is reading, maybe he'll consider expanding to one of these places in the near future.
No. 10 Indianapolis, Indiana
Here is a chance for Bud Selig to steal back some thunder from the NFL.
We all know dark days are upon the city of Indianapolis as their biggest star, Peyton Manning, is all but certain to be either retired or playing elsewhere in 2012, so what better way to brighten the spirits of Colts fans who are sure to be outraged? Give them a Major League Baseball franchise.
Want to one-up the NFL even further? Name the team after Peyton Manning, and name him the manager. The Indianapolis Mannings has a nice ring to it.
No. 9 Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Here is another chance for baseball to steal the show in what is currently a one horse town when it comes to professional sports.
The plan would be for baseball to put a franchise in Oklahoma City in the near future, make sure the team is competitive by 2016, and then watch as fans flock to the stadium after Kevin Durant decides to leave town for a bigger market, making the NBA's Thunder unwatchable.
Bud Selig could end up being the white knight who saves Oklahoma City sports fans by easing the pain of losing their biggest star.
No. 8 Las Vegas, Nevada
Las Vegas, Nevada has been the Disneyland for adults for decades now, but for pro sports, it's been off limits because of it's association with gambling.
Here is a chance for baseball to expand to a market that could end up being a gold mine, as well as turn it into a feel good story.
Put a new team in Las Vegas, and at the same press conference announce that not only has Pete Rose been reinstated, but also named the manager of the team.
It would be a groundbreaking event in sports, but I'd bet it would never happen.
No. 7 Fargo, North Dakota
Seriously, other than the movie by the same name, what else does anyone know about Fargo, North Dakota?
It makes sense to put a Major League Baseball franchise in a city where your only sports competition is moose hunting.
Not sure about a team name or mascot, but during the seventh-inning stretch, there could be a race between people dressed as characters played by Steve Buschemi, similar to the sausage races in Milwaukee or the President races at Nationals games.
No. 6 Allentown, Pennsylvania
Name another city that has a song named after it, yet has no professional sports franchises to call it's own.
Having lived in the area when the Triple-A Iron Pigs were introduced, and that team, stupid name and all, was a huge success. So why shouldn't Bud Selig try to up the ante a little by putting a pro team in the area.
How about the Allentown Pianomen, paying homage to the man who wrote the classic song, while keeping the tradition of stupid team names in the Lehigh Valley alive.
No. 5 Anchorage, Alaska
Baseball in Alaska? Why not?
Alaska has had their share of of minor league baseball teams throughout history, so why not put a Major League baseball team up there?
Since it is dark up there all winter, this new team north of the mainland can start a fun little tradition opposite of what the Chicago Cubs used to have. They would never play a day game.
October baseball could be a bit of a problem, however, as the high temperature in Anchorage that time of year is only about 40 degrees, but if baseball keeps adding playoff teams, they'll be playing until Christmas anyway.
No. 4 San Jose, California
With news that Major League baseball will deny the Oakland Athletics' proposed move to San Jose, consider this a plea to Bud Selig to let this team move.
What's not to love about the move? San Jose is only about 40 miles from Oakland, they'll be playing in a nicer stadium, and best of all, the city of San Jose will treat this team like an expansion franchise.
This will also be a break for the people of Oakland. After all, after having to watch the Giants flourish, the Raiders flounder for years, and a movie about Billy Beane's overrated system of running a franchise, that for all of it's exposure, has produced ZERO championships, haven't the people of Oakland had enough?
Plus, unless this team moves, who the heck is going to purchase a single Cliff Pennington jersey?
No. 3 Butte, Montana
While this part of the country is more wide open an less densely populated than some other areas, does it make it any less worthy of a Major League Baseball franchise? Absolutely not.
And while we're on the subject of current baseball teams relocating, wouldn't this be a great shot in the arm for a certain Pittsburgh franchise that continues to struggle financially, and who's last winning season was about four Barry Bonds hat sizes ago.
No. 2 Queens, New York
I am not sure when it happened, but professional baseball left Queens, New York a few years ago, and has yet to return. It's time that a professional baseball team be put back in Citi Field.
No. 1 Montreal, Canada
Here's a novel concept for Bud Selig to consider.
First, find a stadium that was built to host Olympic competition, and half-heartedly turn it into a dark and dingy domed baseball stadium, complete with artificial turf so terrible, it will shorten careers of players.
Next, totally disregard the money exchange rate across the border. Then draft talented players throughout the teams history, only to watch them flourish elsewhere because the team can not afford to keep them.
Once that is done, make sure that the greatest season in this new team's history coincides with a work stoppage that will eliminate the postseason. This way the fans will not have the chance to be spoiled by a championship.
Finally, take America's pastime, and put it in a french speaking province in Canada.
If that's not a recipe for success in Major League expansion, I don't know what is.