If you travel to Cardinals spring training, I sure hope you like to watch the Marlins and the Mets play the Cardinals... Because that's pretty much all you're going to see starting next year.
Digital Access For Only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
The Orioles have agreed to leave Ft. Lauderdale to train in Sarasota for the next 30 years. That's all the way across the state, leaving the Cardinals only within reasonable driving distance of New York's spring home in Port St. Lucie and the Marlins who share Roger Dean Stadium with the Cardinals.
Once the home of the Yankees, Expos and Dodgers, southeast Florida has become increasingly isolated as teams move to Arizona or the Tampa Bay area. Sarasota used to be the home to the White Sox, who moved to the desert a few years ago. Most recently the Reds played in Sarasota... But they, too, have chosen to move to Arizona with promises of a lucrative relocation bounty.
While I have grown used to Jupiter and it's places to hang out and lounge in the sun, I still miss St. Petersburg because of the fact that it was an easy drive to watch the Cardinals -- or even other teams -- play in Bradenton (Pirates), Dunedin (Blue Jays), Tampa (Yankees), Clearwater (Phillies).
I hope south florida gets aggressive and tries to lure another team or two to the area. The Nationals spring training site in Viera is ridiculous, in the middle of nowhere as far as location in relation to other spring training sites are. And I can't see why midwestern teams like the Royals, Reds, Brewers, Cubs and White Sox would want to be in Arizona when Florida is a drivable vacation.