There's new hope that the St. Louis Cardinals will stay in their current spring training home.
According to the Palm Beach Post, leaders in Palm Beach County are exploring the possibility of building a new spring training facility just south of the one the Redbirds and the Miami Marlins share in Jupiter.
The new park could be home to one or two new spring training teams. Suddenly a negative situation that left the Cardinals with not enough teams to play without making a six-hour roundtrip drive could be reversed. There, potentially could be four teams within 10 minutes of each other and the New York Mets just up Interstate 95 in Port St. Lucie.
The Cardinals and Marlins enjoy some excellent facilities in the Roger Dean Stadium complex. There are plenty of diamonds on which to practice all within walking distance. The stadium is accessible with plenty of parking and is easily accessible. This deal would allow St. Louis and Miami to make the most of what they have without wasting a bunch of time driving all over the state.
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The new site is about the same size as the Roger Dean Stadium complex, which would benefit the new teams that move there.
What's in it for the local taxpayers. Well, when the Cardinals' site was built 15 years ago, it was an empty field with a stadium in the middle of it. A decade and a half later the property is full of fancy condos, restaurants and offices as far as the eye can see.
For miles around hotels and eateries are full of northern baseball fans who ring cash registers in February and March, typically two slow months in the Florida tourism year. And during the rest of the spring and summer months, the Redbirds and Marlins field Florida State League teams at the site to draw additional revenue from the site.
It will be a great relief if this project goes through and Palm Beach County can secure the future of south Florida spring training baseball.