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John Fay
John Fay has been the Reds beat writer for the Enquirer since 2001. Prior to that, he served in a variety of roles for the Enquirer: backup Reds writer, UC beat writer, backup Bengals writer and as a general assignment reporter. He is a Cincinnati native and a graduate of Elder High School and the University of Dayton.

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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Castellini on the spring situation

Reds CEO Bob Castellini is open to continuing to try to work a deal to return to Sarasota. If the Reds do end up leaving, it will be sadness.

"If we leave -- wherever we go -- I would not be upbeat about leaving Sarasota," he said.

That's why the Reds have continued to work to get a deal, despite numerous setbacks.

"This is a big thing for us," Castellini said. "It’s not like we’re trying to leave Sarasota. They've got a tough situation between the city and the county and the economy in all of Florida.

"You have 12 teams in Arizona now, soon to be 14 with the Dodgers and Indians. Most of them have been stolen from Florida. The state is cognizant of that, so they spread around some money to fix up some of the facilities. Ours of is one of those."

But the city of Sarasota and county need to contribute to get the new $41 million deal done. Tuesday, the Sarasota County commissioner could have cemented the new proposal.

“It’s been disappointing,” Castellini said. “But I understand the different crosscurrents.”

The Reds will likely make a call soon -- whether it's to stay in Sarasota or go to Goodyear, Ariz.

“I really feel like the decision has to be made in the next month," Castellini said.


at 5:35 PM Blogger Pat said...

I bet there's a lot of fans in mid Ohio that would love to be able to see the Indians and Reds in one trip.

I know the Reds have to contribute in Sarasota, but do they have to pay anything in AZ? I haven't heard and assume they don't.

at 7:10 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bob Castellini continues to impress me as a good and decent man. As Reds fans, we're fortunate to have him as custodian of our team.


at 7:20 PM Anonymous Joe said...

I hope the Reds are able to get a deal that enables them to stay in Sarasota for the long term. Knowing that the Reds have given 110% to the effort to work with the state, county and city officials involved and have a financial stake involved in staying in Sarasota, it says a lot about the Reds organization and the people involved. I wonder if the people involved in Florida are considering the level of fan support the Reds have recieved in Cincinnati in recent years as a factor in their position? If I were a politician in thier position it would be a concern of mine. I sure hope it works out that the Reds stay in Sarasota and I certainly feel better knowing that is their hope as well!

at 8:20 PM Blogger Pat said...

Looks like Sarasota has to choose between paying city employees and no Reds or keeping the Reds at the expense of laying city employees off.

at 8:53 PM Blogger Hugh D. Pohl said...

Pat, by law they can't use this funding source (hotel tax) for city employees, only for tourism promotion or entertainment items such as sports facilities that will attract tourism. Besides, the city is behind this 100%. It is the county tha tis balking on their share.

at 10:14 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, can we talk about this some more? It's a really fascinating issue, and super-relevant to the 2008 season.

at 12:14 PM Anonymous Jeff said...

Mr. Fay,

I just read something very interesting on a Reds message board. A knowledgeable guy posted a message, there is a little known rule in the MLB when teams move their spring training camp to either Florida or Arizona they must do it evenly to balance it out. The Dodgers and Cleveland already received permission to move to Arizona next spring. That means the Reds, Sarasota or not, are stuck in Florida until a second team wants to move to Arizona.

Were you or the Reds aware of such rule or is there a rule like that? Don’t the Reds have a option to stay in Sarasota until 2009?

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