Thursday, March 11, 2010

Another long hiatus from the blog, but now that the baseball season is gearing up I should be here more often.
  • I watched MLB Networks "30 Teams in 30 Days" preview on the Pirates. I can't imagine being a Pittsburgh fan the last couple of decades. The Pirates haven't had a season where they played above .500 ball in 17 years. That's the longest streak in history - not even historically bad teams like the St. Louis Browns or Washington Senators have approached that. And consider that the Pirates were a very competitive team pretty much continuously from the 1960s through the early 1990s, winning three World Series championships and making seven more post-season appearances.
It does appear that hope may be on the horizon for Bucs fans, though, as GM Neal Huntington appears to have an idea as to how to build a ballclub in a small market the way teams like the Rays, Rockies and Twins have done. I hope so - Pirates fans and their spectacular ballpark deserve a better team.
  • I was listening to the Baseball History Podcast on my way home yesterday and heard an interesting fact. At the time Shea Stadium was built in the early 1960s, MLB was insisting that new ballparks were to be multipurpose facilities so that they would not be a burden on the taxpayers (this doesn't seem to be much of a concern today.) With the opening of Target Field in Minnesota this season, there are just three ballparks left that are shared with football teams: Rogers Centre in Toronto (with the CFL team), Oakland Coliseum and Dolphins Stadium. In 1990, just 20 years ago, 17 teams shared their homes with a pro football team. And this was out of only 26 teams at the time, as the Rays, Marlins, Diamondbacks and Rockies hadn't been born yet.
  • The baseball only ballparks in 1990 were: Fenway Park, Yankee Stadium, Comiskey Park, Tiger Stadium, Arlington Stadium, Royals Stadium, Wrigley Field, Milwaukee County Stadium and Dodger Stadium. Of course, many of those places had hosted pro football in the past, but did not have a team playing there regularly at the time.


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