The Tampa Tribune’s and Jack Latvala’s fib about Spring Training in Florida

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The follow is cross-posted from Noah Pransky’s Shadow of the Stadium blog.

The Tampa Tribune really should know better.

Trust me, in these days of shrinking media budgets, I understand the fact-checker/researcher has gone the way of the evening paper.  But there’s no excuse for the Trib‘s lead editorial this morning to feature a giant fib – one that could have easily been corrected with a Google search or visit to Wikipedia.  Or heck, even reading Shadow of the Stadium.

In support of state funds rehabbing Florida’s spring training facilities, the Trib writes:

As (State Sen. Jack) Latvala, a Pinellas County Republican, points out, 15 years ago every MLB team held its spring training in Florida.  Now, Arizona, which has aggressively sought to take teams from Florida, hosts half of the majors’ 30 teams for spring training.

Except as this blog pointed out last month, not every MLB team was training in Florida 15 years ago.  In fact, in 1998, only 20 of the league’s 30 teams trained in Florida.

In fact, six teams have never trained in Florida.  In fact, the Trib carelessly lifted the claim from an incorrect press release and based part of its pro-subsidy argument on it.  It’s a mistake that needs fixing.

The Times isn’t afraid to post corrections based on discoveries from blogs.  Is the Trib?

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.