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Old 12-30-2011, 11:49 AM
 
Location: Hagerstown
455 posts, read 1,099,785 times
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I was recently speaking with a gentleman who lives in Western MD. He told me that the city of Cumberland has been tossing around the idea of a feasibility study to see if the area could support a minor league baseball team. Has anyone else heard this?
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Old 12-30-2011, 01:13 PM
 
Location: Cumberland
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Yes, it was in our paper. Got any money to donate to the feasibility study? That is as far as the idea has gotten.
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Old 12-30-2011, 02:37 PM
 
Location: Hagerstown
455 posts, read 1,099,785 times
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Oh ok. Thanks.
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Old 12-30-2011, 07:35 PM
 
Location: Cumberland
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The ex-mayor, our top local historian, and some other big names are involved with the idea, but the fact that they aren't shelling out their own money for the study tells me something......

My guess is they will wait around until the economic climate is better and try to get some public money to do it.

I am dubious a team could make money in Cumberland. We aren't really a baseball town, and with minor league ball in nearly every city that abuts our market (Altoona, Hagerstown, Winchester) I am not sure where we would draw the customers from.
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Old 01-01-2012, 11:06 AM
 
Location: North Beach, MD on the Chesapeake
34,871 posts, read 44,407,940 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by westsideboy View Post
The ex-mayor, our top local historian, and some other big names are involved with the idea, but the fact that they aren't shelling out their own money for the study tells me something......

My guess is they will wait around until the economic climate is better and try to get some public money to do it.

I am dubious a team could make money in Cumberland. We aren't really a baseball town, and with minor league ball in nearly every city that abuts our market (Altoona, Hagerstown, Winchester) I am not sure where we would draw the customers from.
Your last was what I was going to say, also. Plus, with what would the team be paired, what are the other draws? Charles County built a minor league stadium and got a team a few years ago and a lot of us just scratched our heads. The justification was "economic development" but no one could expand on what exactly was meant by that.
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Old 01-01-2012, 06:36 PM
 
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Why have baseball, when you have repeat champions in roller hockey?
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Old 01-03-2012, 07:50 PM
 
Location: Seattle, WA
388 posts, read 699,681 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by westsideboy View Post
I am dubious a team could make money in Cumberland. We aren't really a baseball town, and with minor league ball in nearly every city that abuts our market (Altoona, Hagerstown, Winchester) I am not sure where we would draw the customers from.
Hmm.... not sure I agree. Take a look at this map:

Teams by geographical location | The Official Site of Minor League Baseball

Take, for example, Southern West Virginia, a very rural and impoverished area. Bluefield, with a micropolitan area of about 100,000, has a team. Eleven miles away, Princeton (which is in the Bluefield micro area) also has a team. An hour away, there's a team in Pulaski, Virginia and a collegiate summer baseball team in Beckley. Less than two hours away, you'll find teams in Charleston, Roanoke, and Bristol.

The closest teams to us are an hour and a half away in Altoona and Hagerstown (there is no team in Winchester). Also, consider that there is an ENORMOUS region to our south and west that is entirely void of any teams. If they can support two teams down in the West Virginia coalfields with multiple teams nearby, then so can we.

Minor league games are fun and they would give the people in this area something to do. I went to a Curve game when I was little and it was a blast!
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Old 01-04-2012, 10:16 AM
 
Location: Cumberland
5,263 posts, read 8,471,459 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drs72 View Post
Hmm.... not sure I agree. Take a look at this map:

Teams by geographical location | The Official Site of Minor League Baseball

Take, for example, Southern West Virginia, a very rural and impoverished area. Bluefield, with a micropolitan area of about 100,000, has a team. Eleven miles away, Princeton (which is in the Bluefield micro area) also has a team. An hour away, there's a team in Pulaski, Virginia and a collegiate summer baseball team in Beckley. Less than two hours away, you'll find teams in Charleston, Roanoke, and Bristol.

The closest teams to us are an hour and a half away in Altoona and Hagerstown (there is no team in Winchester). Also, consider that there is an ENORMOUS region to our south and west that is entirely void of any teams. If they can support two teams down in the West Virginia coalfields with multiple teams nearby, then so can we.

Minor league games are fun and they would give the people in this area something to do. I went to a Curve game when I was little and it was a blast!
The South is full of minor league ball as there are so few major league teams. Cumberland, even in our isolation is still an easy day trip to see 3 different major league teams.

We are a high school sports town and a football town. I don't think minor league ball would be a big hit. Baseball, especially minor league ball, is for middle class intact families with kids. We don't have many of those. Too many one parent households, too many old folks, too many poor people. Not the market for sports/entertainment baseball, which is what minor league games are.

The only arguement I can think of for the team would be the idea of trying to create enough small attractions to boost tourism. A family that wouldn't come to Cumberland just to ride the WMSR might make a overnight trip to ride the train and catch a ball game by the Potomac that evening.

Still I think it is a financial loser in the making. Last I heard, Hagerstown could barely support their team. The last thing we need is tax dollars going to another boondoggle. If some private individual wants to pony up the money, they are more than welcome.

Last edited by westsideboy; 01-04-2012 at 10:26 AM..
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Old 01-08-2012, 08:06 AM
 
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consider that there is an ENORMOUS region to our south and west that is entirely void of any teams. http://www.depin.info/g.gif (broken link)
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Old 01-08-2012, 09:27 AM
 
Location: Cumberland
5,263 posts, read 8,471,459 times
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Originally Posted by joriiss View Post
consider that there is an ENORMOUS region to our south and west that is entirely void of any teams.
Sure, but if I live in Morgantown, I am going to drive to Cumberland, MD to see minor league ball, or take a 20 minute longer trip and go see the Pittsburgh Pirates, the best AAA team in America

The areas South of Cumberland are the least populated places on the East Coast and among the most rugged and isolated. I think the entire Potomac Highlands of WV has less than 100k people stretched out over 5-6 very remote counties.

If you schedule, say modestly 20 home games, how many of the 20k people in Hampshire County WV are going to drive to Cumberland see them, how many of the 15,000k even further away in Hardy County, WV would come?

It just comes down the business model. If the team can exist selling less than 1,000 tickets a night, then it might succeed. I just don't want to see local government have to pony up money to make the feasibility report, help build the stadium, and then prop up the team when it takes financial losses. We have enough money losers that local government subsidies, we don't need any more. We have our own debt crisis too.
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