St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman met Thursday with Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred at the commissioner’s office in New York City.
Kriseman updated the commissioner on St. Petersburg’s Baseball Forever Campaign and shared the community’s vision for the Tropicana Field site – a vision that includes a new stadium for the Tampa Bay Rays.
“I am thankful for Commissioner Manfred’s time and share his desire for the Rays’ success,” Kriseman said. “I am confident that the team’s regional search will make clear that their current site, reimagined and redeveloped, remains their best option.”
The city launched its Baseball Forever campaign last February. Baseball Forever is an initiative of the city of St. Petersburg, St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce, residents, and fans of the Tampa Bay Rays. The goal of the campaign is to convince the Tampa Bay Rays that their current site, re-imagined and redeveloped, remains the best location for Major League Baseball in Tampa Bay.
One of the ways the campaign aims to show support for the Rays is to invite fans to take the pledge to encourage the Rays to build a new ballpark in St. Petersburg. There’s a button on the website to enable fans to show support.
Although the goal is to have the Rays stick around, the campaign concedes it will work closely with the Rays, county officials, the private sector, and other stakeholders should the team identify a future stadium site adjacent to or impacting St. Petersburg.