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Thread: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear if the funding is there"

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    Maple SERP savafan's Avatar
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    John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear if the funding is there"

    http://www.heraldtribune.com/article...82/1006/sports

    By Roger Drouin
    SARASOTA -- A week before a major deadline in negotiations between the Cincinnati Reds and the city of Goodyear, Ariz., both sides signaled their eagerness to cement the deal.

    Goodyear has until next Thursday to secure the funds needed to build the spring training facility it has promised the Reds. If the city does not have the money by then, the Reds are no longer bound by an exclusive agreement with Goodyear and can negotiate with other cities -- including Sarasota.

    On Thursday, the Goodyear city council met behind closed doors before announcing their intention to come up with the necessary money to bring the Reds to town.

    The Reds, in turn, said once that funding is secured they are ready to make the move to Goodyear.

    "If they come up with the funding, wherever they get it from, we are going to Goodyear," said Reds executive John Allen.

    The news that the Reds' 12th season next year is more and more likely to be the team's last in Sarasota struck a chord among backers who fought to keep the Reds here.

    "I think their fans have no interest in going to, as they call it, 'Where Is It? Arizona,'" said Virginia Haley, director of the Sarasota County Convention and Visitors Bureau. "And we clearly want this team here."

    "Yes we came to the plate late, but there was total, solid support from people who live and work here, the fans and the players."

    Her comments came just hours after the Reds defeated the New York Yankees 12-8 at Ed Smith Stadium before an overflow crowd of 6,980.

    "It's a shame," said Steve Queior, president of the greater Sarasota Chamber of Commerce, of the possibility of the Reds leaving. "It's definitely bad news for the economy."

    At least one Sarasota official said he is not ready to give up the fight yet.

    Sarasota Vice Mayor Kelly Kirschner said he would try to set up a meeting with Reds' owner Bob Castellini early next week.

    "Now the Reds have two solid offers," Kirschner said.

    Pat Calhoon, Sarasota's sports facilities manager, said he would try to keep baseball in town if the Reds leave.

    Calhoon called the Baltimore Orioles three weeks ago to let the team know Sarasota can get a stadium deal done. Baltimore trains in Fort Lauderdale, but the team is reportedly looking to move if a stadium deal does not come through.

    The team already has a presence in Sarasota with its minor league spring training games at Twin Lakes Park on Clark Road.

    On Feb. 12, the County Commission approved $17.6 million in bed tax money to fund the renovation of Ed Smith stadium.

    But that decision came nearly two weeks after the Reds entered into an exclusive agreement with Goodyear, meaning the team had to break off talks with Sarasota. Since that time, Allen has visited Goodyear at least two times to talk to city officials and tour the spring training site.

    The city needs to come up with $32 million to buy the land and build the clubhouse, practice fields, bullpens and offices for the Reds.

    Right now Goodyear's stadium is only set up for one baseball team, the Cleveland Indians, when it opens for spring training play in 2009.

    Goodyear has already issued $75 million in bonds for the stadium, and city officials said securing a second bond should not be a problem.

    Kirschner said he understands why Goodyear is pursuing the Reds.

    "They see this as economic development tool," he said. "And it is pretty smart. They have both teams from Ohio. I am assuming they are banking on getting all of Ohio's baby boomers to move there."

    Sarasota's effort to keep the Reds hit several snags over the past year.

    After city voters narrowly rejected a $16 million property tax increase in November, county commissioners thought that killed the stadium project and started talking about using bed tax dollars to pay for other projects.

    The stadium rebuild was revived by city leaders, and the County Commission ultimately voted 4-1 to allocate the $17.6 million in bed tax dollars.

    "We belatedly got our act together," said Haley, with the Convention and Visitors Bureau. "But we have a history. Look at how long it took us to get the library."

    Calhoon, Sarasota's sports facilities manager, said he is still hopeful the Reds will stay here.

    "But I'm also a realist," he said.
    My dad got to enjoy 3 Reds World Championships by the time he was my age. So far, I've only gotten to enjoy one. Step it up Redlegs!

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    Member JaxRed's Avatar
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    Re: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear"

    NM
    The lowest acceptable payroll amount for ownership to show they are not greedy pigs is 15 million more than they are currently paying. No matter what that currently is.

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    Please come again pedro's Avatar
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    Re: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear"

    Quote Originally Posted by JaxRed View Post
    The thread should be renamed.... "if they come up with funding, we are going to Goodyear."
    how about "if they build it, we will come.....to Goodyear"
    Get your nunchucks and the keys to your dad's car. I know where we can get a gun

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    Maple SERP savafan's Avatar
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    Re: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear if the funding is there"

    Oh, they'll get the funding. Do you have any doubt? Reds spring training in Florida is history.
    My dad got to enjoy 3 Reds World Championships by the time he was my age. So far, I've only gotten to enjoy one. Step it up Redlegs!

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    Member JaxRed's Avatar
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    Re: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear if the funding is there"

    Yes, I assume there is some doubt on the funding. After all, they have had 30 days or so to do it, and haven't identified any source yet.
    The lowest acceptable payroll amount for ownership to show they are not greedy pigs is 15 million more than they are currently paying. No matter what that currently is.

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    Posting in Dynarama M2's Avatar
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    Re: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear if the funding is there"

    Quote Originally Posted by savafan View Post
    Oh, they'll get the funding. Do you have any doubt? Reds spring training in Florida is history.
    This kind of reminds me of when the New England Patriots were going to move to Hartford. My take is if Sarasota puts an attractive offer on the table, the Reds will find a way to take it no matter what Goodyear does.

    On a separate note, wasn't John Allen canned?
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    Churlish Johnny Footstool's Avatar
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    Re: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear if the funding is there"

    This is huge news for my son and me. My in-laws live in Goodyear.

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    GR8NESS WMR's Avatar
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    Re: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear if the funding is there"

    Allen agreed to stay on through this Spring Training facility process. After that, hopefully, we'll never hear or read his name in association with the Reds ever again.
    Quote Originally Posted by Scrap Irony View Post
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    RZ Chamber of Commerce Unassisted's Avatar
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    Re: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear if the funding is there"

    "They see this as economic development tool," he said. "And it is pretty smart. They have both teams from Ohio. I am assuming they are banking on getting all of Ohio's baby boomers to move there."
    I thought this was a fascinating revelation of an economic justification for the move west that none of us had come up with. The Arizona people are looking at this as a way to get Ohioans to retire to Arizona instead of Florida. This isn't just about luring tourists, it's about luring retirees.
    Last edited by Unassisted; 03-07-2008 at 06:57 PM.
    /r/reds

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    Five Tool Fool jojo's Avatar
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    Re: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear if the funding is there"

    Quote Originally Posted by Unassisted View Post
    I thought this was a fascinating revelation of an economic justification for the move west that none of us had come up with. The Arizona people are looking at this as a way to get Ohioans to retire to Arizona instead of Florida. This isn't about luring tourists, it's about luring retirees.
    Yes, because Arizona is suffering from a shortage of those.....
    "This isnít stats vs scouts - this is stats and scouts working together, building an organization that blends the best of both worlds. This is the blueprint for how a baseball organization should be run. And, whether the baseball men of the 20th century like it or not, this is where baseball is going."---Dave Cameron, U.S.S. Mariner

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    Churlish Johnny Footstool's Avatar
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    Re: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear if the funding is there"

    Quote Originally Posted by jojo View Post
    Yes, because Arizona is suffering from a shortage of those.....


    But honestly, you can never have too many retiring boomers throwing their 401K cash into your state's economy.

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    Re: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear if the funding is there"

    I'd like to see the Reds figure out a way to stay in Sarasota if possible, but it looks like that may not be a reality.

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    Re: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear if the funding is there"

    Quote Originally Posted by WilyMoROCKS View Post
    Allen agreed to stay on through this Spring Training facility process. After that, hopefully, we'll never hear or read his name in association with the Reds ever again.
    Except for in REDREAD's sig line
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    Re: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear if the funding is there"

    Quote Originally Posted by gm View Post
    Except for in REDREAD's sig line

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    Re: John Allen: "we are going to Goodyear if the funding is there"

    If they move to Arizona, maybe it will mean more Spring Training games on TV.
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