Retiring Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig says there’s a future for baseball in Tampa Bay, but the team needs a new stadium.
Selig spoke during a press conference for the MLB All-Star Game Tuesday in Minneapolis, where he said that Tampa Bay’s demographics are conducive to a successful team, but that the Tampa Bay Rays need new facilities for the team to succeed in the long-term.
“It’s obvious they need a new stadium,” Selig told the Tampa Bay Times. “All you have to do is look at the daily attendance figures.”
The Rays, who play at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, have one of the lowest attendance records in the MLB with an average of over 16,000 spectators per game during the 2014 season, according to ESPN.
Selig said any changes to the Rays are up to the team’s principal owner Stu Sternberg.
According to The Tampa Tribune, the Rays are contracted to play at Tropicana Field through 2027. But, Sternberg says the contract is unsustainable for the team’s bottom line, and is attempting to renegotiate their contract with St. Petersburg on a new location.
Selig, 79, is slated to retire as MLB commissioner when his current term ends in January 2015.