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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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Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Spring update

I spoke John Allen today about the spring training situation. To clarify: He's no longer the Reds' COO, but he's working as a consultant as the the club tries to find a spring home. Thus he's the point man on the trip to Goodyear, Ariz., to check out the facilities there.

I think the club would rather stay in Florida. But I get the impression that no one is willing to build them a facility like the one in Goodyear.

Allen said the Reds have heard from places other than Orlando. "But I'm not at liberty to discuss," he said. My guess is one is Lee County (Fort Myers), where they'd like to add a third team.

As for Sarasota: "We've had some conversations," Allen said. "But they need to bring a deal to us."

This just in: The Sarasota city commission has put on its agenda for next week discussion of alternative funding plan to rebuild Ed Smith.

Reading some of the stuff in the Sarasota paper, it sound like there's some sentiment to give it a try.

"We're getting to time of the year when people make hotel reservations," Allen said. "I think they realize we're going to be missed."


at 11:34 PM Blogger Scott Evans said...


I think Reds fans in Cincinnati need to speak up and no better place to do so than opening day. Fans should bring signs with a cactus and the circle-line through it on (No Cactus League). As well as keep the Reds in Sarasota signs and chants, or Sarasota : The Power of Tradition.

I still say the Reds should cut all ties with John Allen, he may be a great person, though he was horrible as Reds COO, and absolutely failed in getting the deal done in Sarasota and seems to be closed minded in working on a solution to stay there. By the way, what good is an 8,500 seat stadium if there are no Reds fans to attend games?

at 8:15 AM Blogger ohio herd fan said...

When I was in college at Marshall we would take $2.00 bills to our conference basketball tournament and spend them on all of our purchases during the event. It was a great success as merchants and tournament officials got a true idea of the impact we made on their cash registers.

at 8:18 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...


I live in Richmond, VA, and we just lost the R-Braves to Gwinnet County, GA even though the Braves had been here for nearly 50 years. The reason: City government made stupid proposals (build stadium in flood zone on former industrial brown zone site), studied to death, and simply treated with no urgency the Braves desire for a new facility.

I would urge the leadership in Sarasota to examine the ineptness of the Richmond government and put together a sensible package if they truly want baseball there. I can say for certain that the citizens of this region are enraged, though not surprised by our government's latest example of incompetence.
I truly hope they stay in Florida because my son is fast approaching the age where I want to make annual trips down there with him to catch some spring training games. AZ will simply be too far and too expensive for this southeastern Reds fan.

Richmond, VA

at 8:56 AM Anonymous MONEY MIKE said...

I hope he is talking about Ft. Myers because thats where I have family at and it is a nice area that is great for baseball.

at 9:51 AM Anonymous Red at the Beach said...

Simply put, there are way more Reds fans able to get to FL spring training than AZ. There are also more folks from the Ohio area who retire or vacation in FL than AZ.

But, a shiny new "facility" might be enough to sway mgmt, at least for 10 or 15 yrs and then it'll be on the the next new thing.

Hey, maybe they will build a stadium in SE Indiana that will be so amazing the Reds will have to move there in 2020. Who needs the Cincinnati Reds when we can have the Greater Indianapolis/Cinti Reds playing in a palace?

at 10:10 AM Blogger Pat said...

The Reds will draw better in AZ, even if no one comes from cincinnati.

But, attendance is secondary. The Reds need a top of the line facility that's close to many other spring training camps. They need great weather. They need a place to train their players year around.

Arizona is the future of Spring Training.

at 10:55 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

This argument is classic Cincinnati! A gasping, poor, rustbelt city resisting a move to one of the most dynamic and prosperous areas in the US.

Like most cities (especially in the Sunbelt) have moved past Cincy in the past 30 years, the Cactus League has surpassed the Grapefruit League. Attendance is better, the electricity in the stands is better, and proximity to other teams is better.

Now that you've all been insulted (I live in Cincy, btw), trust me, you will love the Cactus League after you've been there!

at 12:09 PM Blogger Pat said...

Sarasota wants $9 million from the Reds? Does Goodyear want anything? I'd rather see the money spent on players, not concrete.

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