And so, the MLB contraction battle is joined. We'll see if baseball's aspirations to pull the proud, mighty, and luxury stadiumless Minnesota Twins holds up. It is pure greed and blackmail as always. Minneapolis, St. Paul, and Edina have all refused to build them a stadium. Heck, even Charlotte, NC thumbed their nose at them. So, Selig is hoping to panic the Minnesota people into building them a new stadium. Ha.
The San Francisco Giants, faced with the same problems in the mid-decade (and many furtive attempts to move to such places as Denver, Tampa, and even Santa Clara), eventually broke down, got private financing, and built Pac Bell Park. The owners are stil lfuming about this, but there's no question that owning their own park has secured the Giants a place in San Francisco for years to come, just as the Dodgers did with Dodger Stadium.
It's interesting to note that the first publicly financed baseball stadium, Milwaukee County Stadium, lost the tenant it was built for (the Braves) a mere twelve years after getting them.
Speaking of new parks, the new Phillies park is not what I'd like -- it's near the current Vet, not in town. And while it will incorporate part of what made Shibe Park a quirky old park, it's missing the Victorian rotunda and the high right field wall.