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The Braves moving to a new park is understandable but perverse

Nov 11, 2013, 11:03 AM EDT

Turner Field

I’m still processing the announcement that the Braves are abandoning a 17 year-old ballpark for a new ballpark in the Atlanta suburbs. But in the meantime, here are my initial thoughts:

  • If anyone sees what the Braves are doing and STILL argues for public funding of ballparks, they should have their head examined. Turner Field was built for the Olympics and converted for baseball at great cost — some private, some public — and remains a more or less new and near state-of-the-art ballpark. Now Cobb County is going to pay for a new park. At some point it should begin to dawn on governments and tax payers that professional sports teams are playing them, but I’m not sure when that point is.
  • We live in a world where the Rays are stuck in Tropicana Field and the A’s are stuck in the Oakland Coliseum, yet we will soon have two perfectly wonderful ballparks in the Atlanta area, serving a team that rarely fills one. Thanks antitrust exemption. If baseball owners were forced to deal with the same competitive environment as most business this wouldn’t happen. Someone would come take over Turner Field. Or move to New Jersey. Whatever the case, this is sorta perverse.
  • That said, the impulse for the Braves to want to move makes some amount of sense. The Braves are a business and their goal is to make money. They have a crappy TV deal so stadium revenue is paramount for them. They are clearly making a calculation that they can make way more money in the new ballpark under new circumstances than they can hope to make in Turner Field. The Braves released a map today which shows how large a proportion of their ticket sales come from the northern suburbs, where the new ballpark will be. They’re not idiots. The financial incentives in play are probably pretty compelling.
  • But let us not confuse what will surely be financial success with brilliant business acumen on the part of the Braves. At least not the sort of acumen which usually gets lauded as the genius of capitalism or whatever. MLB owners live in a world with basically zero risk in order to get their billions. As stadium financing shows, baseball owners live off of other people’s money. Usually public money. And no one ever seems to call these already rich men and corporations out on accepting millions from the government the way poor people are called out on accepting a few hundred or a couple of thousand because they can’t feed their families or get basic medical care.

Politics aside: I’m a Braves fan. I’ll probably always be a Braves fan. Why? Because fandom is inherently irrational. We root for laundry. We root to perpetuate memories and good feelings we had when we were kids. I root because I rooted for Dale Murphy and Bruce Benedict at one strange time in my life and then just followed the thread. We all have that same story. It’s why we give a longer and more charitable look at the new players our teams acquire and thus continue on with them too. You can’t just let that go.

But if it were rational? If we just chose who we rooted for based on objective criteria as adults? If you dropped us down on Earth for the first time in 2013 and told us to root for the team which most appeals to us in terms of the behavior of the organization as a whole, its fan base, its culture and everything else? Man, it would be harder than Hell to root for the Atlanta Braves right now.

118 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. innout10 - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:16 AM

    Craig… They are a business first and made a strategic decision. If you are so opposed to public funds going towards a stadium join the Goldwater group or run for office.

    • cohnjusack - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:27 AM

      If you are so opposed to public funds going towards a stadium join the Goldwater group or run for office.

      Yes Craig, if you are against something, never EVER speak of it unless you join an right-wing group (as they are the only ones opposed to public stadium financing…in your mind) or run for office. How dare thee express displeasure at something! It’s made even more outrageous as you lack any form of public forum on which to express your views, so literally no one will ever see them and you are complaining to an empty abyss!

      • skids003 - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:54 AM

        Yes, only libs are allowed to speak out against something. If they can’t find something, they’ll make up something to speak out against.

      • cohnjusack - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:01 PM

        Yes, only libs are allowed to speak out against something.

        You missed my point by thiiiiiiiis much. I was merely pointing out that absurdity that that the OP told Craig, whose politics are typically seemed to be pretty liberal, to join a conservative group if he opposes stadium funding.

      • stex52 - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:07 PM

        Huh? Is that the closest you can get to contributing something to this conversation?

      • stex52 - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:09 PM

        Not you, Cohn.

    • stex52 - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:28 AM

      I take it, then, that you are in favor of being taxed so a baseball team can make more money.

      Why stop at baseball? Why don’t cities build stores for Wal-Mart and Macy’s so they can sell more products to customers?

      Tax abatements are bad enough deals as it is. Tax abatements to build stadiums so rich teams can be more profitable is obscene.

      • stex52 - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:29 AM

        Or even worse, selling bonds that the county will be paying for 30 years.

      • chc4 - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:57 AM

        I am not in favor of being taxed so that we can give money to companies like Tesla and Solyndra either.

        What you fail to realize is that most major cities have funds set up for this kind of thing. Like the Falcons new stadium… the public portion of that comes out of a hotel/motel tax. Not a penny will come from tax increases. Doesn’t mean the city won’t raise taxes b/c they will… but it won’t be to pay for stadium. It will be to build someone nonsensical ferris wheel or ridiculous downtown trolley car.

      • stex52 - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:00 PM

        The slush find you speak of came from tax money. I still don’t see why it should be used to fund a private enterprise.

      • chc4 - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:07 PM

        It is a slush fund earmarked for exactly these type of projects. It cannot be used for any other means. At least that’s the case in Atlanta. And since it’s a hotel/motel tax it is largely funded by tourism (aka non Atlanta residents). Whatever is in the coffers can’t be used to build a new homeless shelter or fix potholes. Whether you like it or not is irrelevant but that’s the way Atlanta is set up.

      • stex52 - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:09 PM

        Why not give it to Starbucks so they can build a couple of hundred new shops?

        They are a private enterprise.

      • jm91rs - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:20 PM

        chc4, when do those tax increases on hotels expire and how are you certain that they will provide enough money to pay for the stadium? And tell me how the Baseball Stadium is going to work. If the Falcons get hotel taxes, do they add more to it for the Braves? That’s going to do wanders for the tourism industry in Atlanta. Using projections to spend tax money before it is collected is a dangerous business. Just ask the tax payers of Hamilton County Ohio.

      • drewsylvania - Nov 11, 2013 at 1:05 PM

        If I’m reading chc4’s argument correctly, it reads like this:

        “We should continue being screwed over by powerful people because it has always been so.”

        Not a good argument.

      • padraighansen - Nov 11, 2013 at 2:17 PM

        @ Stex

        I can’t speak to Macy’s or some of the other big-box retailers, but I’ve sat through plenty of planning & zoning & City Council meetings where Wal-Mart was preparing to buy a tract of land for a store that was just on the outside of city limits, and they are petitioning the city to have that tract of land annexed into the city, so the store would be on city sewers, wells, electricity, etc., and in many cases, have stoplights, turn signals, and turn lanes implemented for the new store on the publics’ dime.

        It goes on now….it’s just as public, or a perverse, dollar-wise, as we are seeing with professional sports teams.

      • stex52 - Nov 11, 2013 at 2:52 PM

        Padraig, I work in the petrochemical industry. Screwing counties out of tax abatements for capital additions is our bread and butter.

        But I still don’t approve.

      • padraighansen - Nov 11, 2013 at 3:59 PM

        @ Stex

        I wasn’t disagreeing with you at all – just providing a little insight on experiences with Wal-Mart.

        And I’m with you – I don’t disagree.

        I haven’t delved deep at all into the research on this – so I do not know – but I’d be interested to see what a team like the Braves in Atlanta, or Brewers in Milwaukee, or Dodgers / Yankees generate in terms of tax and other revenue for a city, state, and county. I’m not saying I support the use of public dollars for stadiums, but if there is enough discernible ROI that can then be used for schools, infrastructure, etc., then it’s worth a discussion to at least learn more and be able to make an educated decision.

        Without positive ROI from these types of abatements – then I agree wholeheartedly with your last sentence.

      • stex52 - Nov 11, 2013 at 4:13 PM

        Padraig, I was agreeing with you. Just giving another example.

      • chc4 - Nov 12, 2013 at 7:40 AM

        jm91rs –

        The Braves are leaving b/c Fulton County exhausted that entire slush fund for the Falcons stadium being built. There was nothing left for the Braves. And keep in mind, this new stadium will still be in the city of Atlanta. That seems to be get lost in the shuffle. Getting anything out of the cesspool that is Fulton County is a great move for all.

    • drewsylvania - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:36 PM

      So, in your mind, businesses are supposed to team up with government officials with the goal of being fiscally irresponsible?

      Saying “it’s a business” seems to be a catch-all for “let them be unbelievable d*****bags”.

  2. tgthree - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:17 AM

    Regardless of where folks fall on the debate of whether or not stadiums should be funded by public money, I don’t at all understand why this development would make it rationally difficult to root for the Braves.

    Would so-called “rational” fans be flocking to the Braves if there were instead a press release today saying, “The Atlanta Braves are proud to announce that despite Cobb County’s independent decision to provide the organization with hundreds of millions of dollars in funding that will likely result in a better, more financially secure future for the team and easier access to the stadium for the team’s fan base, the Braves have decided to decline this funding on principle because the team’s political stance is that these public monies should instead be directed toward supporting those who can’t feed their families or get basic medical care”?

    • drewsylvania - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:40 PM

      One can easily see taxpayers being screwed by this development. If one is both rational and knowledgeable, one might decide to stop rooting as a result. But, as Craig points out, fandom isn’t rational.

      • tgthree - Nov 11, 2013 at 1:49 PM

        I get how taxpayers would be angry about this development. I just can’t see how they would be angry AT THE BRAVES about this development. Blame the elected officials of Cobb County who are supporting this. Blame the voters who elected those officials in the first place. But how can any “rational and knowledgeable” individual blame the Braves? Since when is it the Braves’ responsibility to oppose the political stance of Cobb County’s leadership?

  3. mavajo - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:18 AM

    Turner Field is in the hood. It’s near I-85, but it’s not easily acceptable – you have to navigate the hood to get to it. There’s also absolutely no desirable restaurants, hotels, bars or any other type of attraction within walking distance of Turner Field. It’s tricky to get in and out of Turner Field. And it’s in a part of Atlanta that no one ever goes to – except to go to Turner Field.

    This is a great move. Shocking, sure – definitely wasn’t expecting the Braves to be moving any time soon. But it’s a great move, and I’m looking forward to it.

    Now if only the Falcons had decided to build their new stadium on the location of that old GM plant near 85/285. That would have been awesome. Both the Falcons and the Braves, moving out of the hood at long last… That would have been great. But I’ll take one.

    • mavajo - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:20 AM

      *easily accessible, not easily acceptable

      • flynnie321 - Nov 11, 2013 at 4:31 PM

        The Varsity offers delicious hot dogs, burgers, shakes and fried peach pies. The fare there has made the coats of Ga. Tech students glisten for years.

    • bravojawja - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:34 AM

      It isn’t tricky to get to Turner Field. It’s right off the Connector, with easy access to I-20, too. You don’t go near “the hood” to get there, unless you walk through Grant Park, where the homes cost $300K.

      The city has tried to work with the Braves on adding more “stuff” to do around there, but that eats into the parking that the Braves clearly cherish.

      The 285/75 area is atrociously bad for traffic as it is. Please explain how adding an additional 41,000 cars at rush hour will make it better — because everybody will have to drive to get there since Cobb County refuses to allow public transit within its pristine borders.

      (And the same argument for moving the Falcons to Doraville – explain how adding 70,000 cars to Spaghetti Junction during rush hour would have been better. And if you’re going to “the hood” for a Falcons game, you’re doing it wrong. Take MARTA. There’s a train station called “Georgia Dome.” Try it sometime.)

      • voteforno6 - Nov 11, 2013 at 2:35 PM

        Does Atlanta have any public transportation to speak of? My impression of the city from the times that I’ve been there is that you pretty much have to drive to get anywhere around town. If that’s the case, I’m not sure what difference it’ll make where the stadium is located – there will be traffic problems all the time.

      • The 144 Workshop - Nov 11, 2013 at 3:43 PM

        Those parking spots that Atlanta owns? Those parking spots and the revenue that the ACC has used for 35 years as justification to not build a MARTA spur to either stadium?

      • bravojawja - Nov 11, 2013 at 4:15 PM

        no6: Atlanta has MARTA and has for 40+ years. It doesn’t go everywhere, but it does have a stop not far from the Ted plus shuttles that run from another station (free transfer from the station). You’ll never hear me tout MARTA as being awesome, but it is useful in certain situations, and getting to a Braves/Falcons/Hawks/Dream game is one of them. Getting to the airport is another.

        The new stadium is nowhere near any public transit, and if the history of Cobb County holds true (and the good people of Cobb County like to make sure they’re still living in the past) there never will be. That intersection is already a nightmare; 41,000 cars will make it a debacle.

      • chris1019 - Nov 11, 2013 at 5:12 PM

        I had no idea that in Atlanta every single person has to drive themselves to the game. Somebody needs to do a public service announcement about carpooling over there.

      • misterj167 - Nov 11, 2013 at 6:47 PM

        I’ve lived in a lot of cities in the US and a couple places overseas and I think Atlanta has the worst public transportation system for any city of comparable size in the country. And a big reason fro that is that they get no money from the state, and no cooperation from the northern suburbs, who believe that public transportation is for losers, Europeans, and “those people” (They don’t call MARTA Moving Africans Rapidly Through Atlanta for nothing).

        Of course this is Cobb County we’re talking about here, which is Newt Gingrich’s old district, one of the most conservative districts in the country, yet thanks to the Lockheed-Martin plant, the recipient of more federal dollars than pretty much any congressional district in the country (and only matched by other highly conservative districts aligned with the defense industry).

        And as I’m so fond of saying, if the feds were to go to Lockheed-Martin and say “Listen you’ve done great work for us over the years but you know there’s really no need for an F-22, nice as it is…what we’d like for you to do is to re-tool, because we’d like to build engines, and cars for high speed passenger rail instead. Nothing will change in terms of how much money you’ll get, you’ll just be building something different”, they would call that socialism.

        The citizens there recently rejected a one-penny tax to pay for increased public transit, but I bet they’ll easily approve a tax increase for a stadium you can only get to by car, pay exorbitant funds to park, and sit in traffic getting to the game and going home, with all the money going to the corporation that runs the Braves and none of it having a positive impact on them economically. And lest you think they wouldn’t be that stupid, think of the tax-haters in Texas who voted to raise their own taxes to pay for that garish, billion dollar stadium for the Cowboys so that Jerry Jones can soak them even more. Why they don’t just sign their paychecks over directly to him, I’ll never know.

        I still love my Braves of course, for a lot of the reasons Craig mentioned, but I live in Chicago now and while I’m not necessarily a Cubs fan or a Sox fan, I know I can get to either stadium right from the Red Line. After this move, Braves fans won’t have that option at all.

    • lilprofsports - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:40 AM

      Can’t this argument be used against public financing of a new stadium? We don’t have to argue about impact studies or economic theories or any of that. Here we have a stadium — actually, two stadiums if you count the Georgia Dome — sold to the public as a way to revitalize the downtown area, and now, some 20 years later, the tenants are arguing that the neighborhood is terrible and that the ticket-paying fans are all out in the suburbs and don’t want to drive in.

      It may just be one data point, but it does suggest these sorts of revitalizations are wastes of public funds.

    • ctony1216 - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:56 AM

      Maybe the Braves should work with the city to invest in “the hood” (do you mean the poor section of the city?) rather than move the team.

      Investing in “the hood” might actually be a lot cheaper than paying to build a new stadium, and it may create a lot more jobs, and maybe even improve the lives of a lot of Atlanta residents, who then may be able to afford and enjoy Braves games, T-shirts, and styrofoam tomahawks. It’s the Henry Ford principal of capitalism. Put people to work so they can afford to buy your products.

      • petey1999 - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:27 PM

        Nah. White flight is a tradition in Atlanta. Why does metro Atlanta have the lowest population density of any major city? Because, since the early 60s, white people have been trying to get as far away from “the hood’ as possible.

      • 18thstreet - Nov 11, 2013 at 4:25 PM

        I was curious about the idea of Atlanta having the lowest population density of any major city. It sounds correct, based on what I’ve heard about Atlanta’s sprawl. Here’s the stats, with population density being one of the last columns on the right.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_States_cities_by_population

        Among cities with a relatively close population, Atlanta’s population density is roughly the same as Omaha, Mesa, Madison, and Tampa. (Define “Major” however you’d like to.) But San Antonio and Phoenix and Austin and Indianapolis and Orlando and Memphis and Ft. Worth and Louisville and Kansas City (KS) and Jacksonville and Oklahoma City all have lower population densities.

        Can we agree that, if we’re going to just make stuff up, that we’ll limit it to Jack Morris?

      • petey1999 - Nov 11, 2013 at 10:05 PM

        So 18th, I understand that reading comprehension may be a challenge for you, but the word metro is short for metropolitan, which, when used with the name of a city, includes the area surrounding the actual boundaries of said city. Cobb county, for instance, while not in the actual city of Atlanta, is, in fact, in the metro Atlanta area. And so, as I wrote, the metro Atlanta area has the lowest population density of any major city in the US.

        http://atlurbanist.tumblr.com/post/50419136293/incredible-time-lapse-image-of-atlantas-metro-sprawl

    • happytwinsfan - Nov 11, 2013 at 2:10 PM

      alternatively the hundreds of millions used to build the new stadium could be used to make things better in the “hood”.

      • cur68 - Nov 11, 2013 at 5:56 PM

        Nah. People inna ” ‘hood” are BORN like that not and are not mainly the victims of circumstance. You can’t change life for them by altering their circumstance! That’s insane and not backed by research or been validated by ACTUALLY doing it and seeing.

        Well. Actually, none of the things I just wrote are correct. So there’s that. Or something. But lets just have tax money spent on a billionaire’s playthings, eh? THAT makes sense.

  4. sdelmonte - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:21 AM

    If we were being fully rational, would we be sports fans at all? A lot of people look at our collective obsessions with grown men wearing silly uniforms and chasing after balls all night as being rather irrational in the first place. Then add in the amount of money being thrown by fans at the games. And endless questions about steroids in MLB and concussions and all sorts of frat boy misbehavior in the NFL, etc. If we were really thinking it all through, wouldn’t we be seriously considering some other pastime?

  5. scoutsaysweitersisabust - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:21 AM

    This should be criminal. The worst part? The funding that builds these stadiums is taken from funds that would otherwise go to Education, Fire, and Police budgets. All so we can save billionaires millions. It’s disgraceful and we should all be ashamed of ourselves for allowing it to happen.

    • chc4 - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:53 AM

      Criminal? Surely you are joking. But if not, who should be arrested… the politician(s) that allow this to happen or the owner for asking? I don’t see how anyone can blame the team. Cobb County could’ve easily told them no. They clearly think the county will benefit from this move.

      • drewsylvania - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:45 PM

        Their pockets will certainly benefit, yes. I’m sure the new facility will be nice and shiny and people will love it. But they won’t love it when there’s no money for vital services because it was spent on an extraneous stadium.

  6. Old Gator - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:29 AM

    But will the new stadium make it possible for the Braves to play the game the right way?

    • stex52 - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:33 AM

      Heck, yeah! Isn’t screwing the taxpayers the right way?

    • alexo0 - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:35 AM

      Yes. The Braves will still refuse to use their closer with a lead in the 8th inning.

    • cackalackyank - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:18 PM

      Well, if they get the new stadium and then trade away all their talented good players, and become the lowest payroll team in the big Leagues, some people may call it right. I mean isn’t that what you’re supposed to do after the taxpayers foot the bill for a new stadium?

    • bravojawja - Nov 11, 2013 at 1:14 PM

      Well, since Cobb County is stuck in the 1950’s, yes.

  7. cohnjusack - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:34 AM

    Let’s, for a second, pretend that publicly financing a stadium actually benefits the city. This is obviously not the case as study after study after study has shown. If you want to argue this point, I urge you to cite where a publically financed stadium as provided additional revenue to the city.

    Regardless, let’s say it does. Does anyone, in their heart of hearts, believe that the hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars, for a stadium that is used 81 days a year (8 if it’s the NFL!) can benefit a city more than that hundreds of millions of dollars spent almost anywhere else?

  8. lindsaycronk - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:37 AM

    Oppose the Braves move and sign the petition here. https://www.change.org/petitions/atlanta-braves-ownership-keep-the-braves-at-turner-field

    • louhudson23 - Nov 11, 2013 at 1:44 PM

      Done.

  9. tgthree - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:38 AM

    Also, is it even clear that the stadium is publicly funded? The release says, “$450 million in private financing arranged by the county.” That could mean a lot of things.

  10. chc4 - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:51 AM

    Get mad at the rich guy that owns the team yet so little anger at the local politicians that allow it to happen. Last I checked an owner has never been arrested for holding a gun to anyone’s head to get a new stadium.

    • 18thstreet - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:03 PM

      Don’t presume you know who I’m mad at.

      • chc4 - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:10 PM

        I don’t presume to know anything about you especially since I didn’t post that comment in response to anything you said.

        But almost every post on this thread is killing the team. All the “rich, evil owners” nonsense. It’s the lowest common denominator.

      • 18thstreet - Nov 11, 2013 at 1:45 PM

        I think there’s plenty of people disgusted at the politicians giving away money to rich people, along with the shamelessness of rich people asking for a handout.

    • drewsylvania - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:47 PM

      The rich and powerful feed each other, while the plebs rot.

      It’s the American Way.

      • paperlions - Nov 11, 2013 at 2:06 PM

        Now now….the US does not have a monopoly on this strategy. This is the human way.

    • louhudson23 - Nov 11, 2013 at 1:47 PM

      The politician is presumed to be in the rich guys pocket.The rich guy buys his politicians and they act in the interest of the rich guy,not the public….then the politician explains it was the brown and black peoples fault and the white folks who are getting screwed alongside the brown and black people shake their heads knowingly…..

      • drewsylvania - Nov 11, 2013 at 3:22 PM

        Not sure why this is getting downthumbs. This is exactly what happens most of the time.

    • gomer1 - Nov 12, 2013 at 11:35 AM

      I’m not saying that it’s right, but people need to understand that relocation is a proverbial gun to the head. Having a professional team in the NFL or MLB gives a city a sense of legitimacy that they can’t (or at least think they can’t) afford to lose. Look at Green Bay, Buffalo, Jacksonville, and even what would happen to Detroit if not for the recognition of their sports teams.

  11. temporarilyexiled - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:57 AM

    Craig,

    Thanks for a really great post. Not everyone can discuss the cold, hard facts about their team, while at the same time tracing their emotional involvement, and how it’s not always so great to be a fan.

    My fifth grade teacher treated us (if you can call a Candlestick night game a treat) to Giants games for doing so many book reports. This was definitely a contributing factor for me. You don’t find love. It finds you.

    I’ve spent many a time proud of the organization. And many a time anything but proud of the organization.

    Composing rational thoughts about the irrational. A definitely curious way we spend our time.

    • chc4 - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:03 PM

      Is that you Dr. Phil? I honestly have no clue what you just said.

      • temporarilyexiled - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:25 PM

        Why yes, yes it is. And I’m now going to ask you to publically confront your inner hostility. Question: Do you actually WATCH him? Do you do it hoping to find a clue? Good luck.

  12. chip56 - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:59 AM

    The Braves aren’t breaking a lease like the A’s are trying to do or the Rays wish they could do. They didn’t hold up Atlanta for the money for Turner Field – as Craig notes the bones were already there for the Olympics – the city had to do something with the property. If the Braves are able to get a state of the art stadium that is more conducive to their fan turnout than Turner Field then what’s the problem?

    Maybe the city of Atlanta turns Turner Field into something that benefits more of the municipality than a ball park.

    The Braves are making a smart and ethical business decision – for someone who claims that the people who are anti PED users are on some moralistic high horse, saying that this decision makes “rooting for the Braves a little harder” is quite hypocritical.

    • drewsylvania - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:51 PM

      The only reason anyone calls this thievery “ethical” is because screwing over the little guy is as common as rain.

      • chip56 - Nov 11, 2013 at 2:11 PM

        How’s anyone getting screwed? The Braves signed a lease in return for the public funding of the stadium. The terms of the lease expired, the Braves are moving to a new stadium as is their right.

    • APBA Guy - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:57 PM

      What is this A’s breaking the lease crap? The A’s situation currently is about renewing an expiring lease.

  13. clydeserra - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:01 PM

    Pascual Perez keeps rolling over in his grave.

  14. Brinke - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:10 PM

    this is amazing. TURNER FIELD? it looks great! someone’s just a bit tooooo greedy.

  15. jm91rs - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:25 PM

    I’ll agree with what most of you rational, anti-tax payer funded stadium, people are saying. Maybe though, we should wait and hear the plans? A few hours ago we didn’t even know a new stadium was coming, we can’t just speculate that public funding is paying for this thing. We have to hope that reason will prevail and small county governments are figuring out that this doesn’t work. I’m holding my breath that this is private financing.

  16. Jonny 5 - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:28 PM

    I’m in the middle politics wise. And there is very little that pisses me off more than tax payers footing the bill for multimillionaires to make more profit. If they think it’ll help the bottom line then they should have to finance it like any other business. These politicians should be torn from their positions never to work in politics again. It’s disgusting yet nobody is trying to stop it as far as I know. Isn’t Georgia in the midst of a 700 million dollar deficit? Hearing these plans is enough to make me throw up my lunch.

    • bravojawja - Nov 11, 2013 at 1:18 PM

      From what little we’ve learned, the state doesn’t have a dog or penny in this fight. It’s Cobb County and a mystery team that are ponying up the cash.

    • skids003 - Nov 11, 2013 at 1:34 PM

      No, the State of Georgia has to balance it’s budget per the state constitution, something the Federal government doesn’t understand. So no, there is no budget deficit.

      • teambringitstrong - Nov 11, 2013 at 2:23 PM

        Every state balances its budget per its state’s constitution. Gawgia is no different. And sorry to burst your bubble but there is a deficit which is the reason the state has slowed down the issuance of tax credits for SAG movies being shot there.

      • skids003 - Nov 11, 2013 at 3:43 PM

        I hate to bust your bubble, but Georgia actually is in the black right now, trying to get the “rainy day” fund even more so. Besides, this isn’t the state, it’s Cobb county.

        We don’t operate like California.

      • 18thstreet - Nov 11, 2013 at 4:31 PM

        The federal government has been running a deficit for pretty much every year of its existence. It’s hard to see how it’s a problem in and of itself. There’s good reasons to run a deficit (winning World War II) and bad reasons to run a deficit (losing a war in Iraq). But it’s not a bad thing to run a deficit.

      • misterj167 - Nov 11, 2013 at 7:01 PM

        If it weren’t for Federal money, the residents of Georgia would be eating their own dirt. The only way they can balance their budget is with federal dollars coming in, and northern, liberal states helping to subsidize the moocher states of the Old Confederacy. If it weren’t for liberals, you guys would probably still be without electricity. If it weren’t for federal funds building highways you’d be walking on dirt roads.

      • clydeserra - Nov 11, 2013 at 9:26 PM

        Skids: California is now in the black again.

      • skids003 - Nov 12, 2013 at 8:41 AM

        misterj, if you really believe what you just posted, you are on another planet. Northern lib states aren’t subsidizing anything down here, they are all in the red and screwing up everything. “If it weren’t for liberals,….”. We wouldn’t be in the mess we’re in as a country.

      • bravojawja - Nov 12, 2013 at 9:27 AM

        skids – I think what misterj is saying is that, as a general rule, for every dollar “red” states send to the feds, they get back more than that dollar, while for every dollar “blue” state send to the feds, they get back less than that dollar.

        Here’s a handy chart for you.

        Also, as a general rule, “red” states’ budgets have a higher percent of federal dollars propping them up compared to “blue” states.

        Hey, look! Another handy chart!

        And Georgia’s budget was balanced by slashing the holy bejeezus out of budgets for education, health, the poor, and state employees (who haven’t had a cost of living adjustment increase in five years while seeing their health insurance rates skyrocket over the same [read: not ACA-caused] period).

  17. wwttww - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:52 PM

    The Ted Turner curse is over!!!

    Let the new one begin!

    Smh

  18. indaburg - Nov 11, 2013 at 1:50 PM

    Craig, it is possible to break up with a team. It hurts at first. You eat a ton of Haagen Dasz and mope around, drink too much, reminisce about old times, but eventually you meet another team. A better looking, younger, smarter team who laughs at your jokes. Ahem.

    If it were a rational decision, just out of curiosity, which team would you cheer?

    • stex52 - Nov 11, 2013 at 2:56 PM

      Astros, obviously. Everyone would be a fan of my team if they just understood.

  19. louhudson23 - Nov 11, 2013 at 1:50 PM

    It’s called Trickle Down….and if the trickle looks a little yellow and stings your eyes,well….its the Mexicans fault….

  20. louhudson23 - Nov 11, 2013 at 1:50 PM

    it’s

  21. chip56 - Nov 11, 2013 at 2:12 PM

    If taxpayers are given the option to vote on a bill about public funding for a ball park and opt to vote for it – then I have no issue with public funding for stadiums.

  22. sincitybonobo - Nov 11, 2013 at 2:19 PM

    Cobb’s aversion to a MARTA rail line seems to be the equivalent of Fairfax County, VA opting out of DC’s Metro rail. This, of course, would be completely insane. What gives?

  23. teambringitstrong - Nov 11, 2013 at 2:21 PM

    I find it amusing that you RED states always laugh at California and bemoan the fact about taxes, taxes, taxes but yet you bend over and take this from these pro teams.

    • skids003 - Nov 11, 2013 at 3:45 PM

      It’s not the State, it’s the county. We aren’t taking nothing from them.

      • bravojawja - Nov 11, 2013 at 4:18 PM

        Only for the Falcons.

  24. ernieba1 - Nov 11, 2013 at 3:05 PM

    If you look at a demographic map of the area, you can see what fans the Braves are trying to get closer to:

    http://www.policymap.com/blog/2013/11/atlanta-braves/

  25. flynnie321 - Nov 11, 2013 at 4:43 PM

    As long as it’s named for my Uncle Bud Kaufman, a lifelong Braves fan (well, since they moved to Atlanta) who’s Jewish and landed on Eutaw Beach, I’m for it. He was a forward artillery observer, and this would be a great way to say, “Thanks, Uncle Bud!” There should be a challah concession (might I suggest “Down in the Challah” as a tip of the cap to all things rural?) as well as a “Varsity at the Park” with roller-skating carhops.

    • flynnie321 - Nov 11, 2013 at 4:51 PM

      And yes, I know it should be “Utah” but thought “Eutaw” more rural.

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