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Marlins Close to Orange Bowl Deal


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In related news, the Herald has just posted an article on their website stating that the City intends to demolish the OB. (Little blurb about the Florida Marlins in bold)

 

http://www.miamiherald.com/news/breaking_n...ory/300837.html

 

Miami to demolish Orange Bowl (and sell off pieces)

Posted on Thu, Nov. 08, 2007

 

BY BARRY JACKSON

[email protected]

 

 

In a move that's hardly surprising, the city of Miami has decided to demolish the Orange Bowl, a 70-year-old sports cathedral that has staged some of the biggest and most memorable events in South Florida history.

 

And soon, the public will get a chance to buy pieces of the stadium, even the urinals.

 

Gilbert Cabrera, chief of staff for Miami city manager Pete Hernandez, said Thursday afternoon that Hernandez has decided to tear down the stadium soon after it plays host to its final scheduled event, a high-school football All-Star game, on Jan . 4.

 

Cabrera said Hernandez has the authority to make the decision without City Commission approval. Hernandez was in meetings Thursday and not immediately available for comment. But after the University of Miami decided earlier this fall to move to Dolphin Stadium, Hernandez said it would be difficult to justify spending millions to make structural upgrades on the OB.

 

The University of Miami will play its final game at the Orange Bowl Saturday against Virginia. Florida International University, which is using the OB this season while its new stadium is constructed, will play three more games there. The FIU-North Texas game Dec. 1 will be the final college game played at the OB.

 

Though the city of Miami continues to speak with the Florida Marlins about building a stadium on that site, the demolition of the OB is not contingent on a Marlins deal. The city, Miami-Dade County and the Marlins continue discussions but so far have been unable to reach an agreement on a funding plan for a ballpark.

 

The city is soliciting offers from companies interested in handling the demolition of the stadium and the sale of memorabilia, Cabrera said. According to the request for proposals, the city expects the demolition contractor will begin work in January and will have four months to complete it.

 

The city also expects parts of the stadium will go on sale to the public in January or February -- including seats and urinals, according to Cabrera.

 

UM, which is planning a post-game Orange Bowl ceremony for this weekend's game, has said that anyone who attempts to rush onto the field or take pieces of the stadium on Saturday will be arrested.

 

Including college football, the Orange Bowl has been hosting 60 to 70 events a year, according to Ileana Gomez, who retired recently after 22 years at the OB, most recently as executive director.

 

That includes monthly car sales outside the stadium, international soccer games, a few high-school football games a year, about two religious revivals a year, and numerous commercial shoots.

 

No venue in South Florida -- or in the entire Southeast -- has played host to more big games, big names and memorable moments than the Orange Bowl.

 

It was within the hallowed confines of the OB where Dan Marino shattered NFL single-season passing records, where the Hurricanes claimed the first, second and fourth of their national titles, where Joe Namath quarterbacked the greatest upset in Super Bowl history, where Lynn Swann secured maybe the greatest catch in Super Bowl history, where errant attempts befell hard-luck Florida State kickers, and where Satchell Paige drew the largest crowd ever to witness a minor-league baseball game.

 

Five Super Bowls have been played there -- tied with the Rose Bowl for second-most behind the Superdome in New Orleans. The includes Super Bowl III -- the New York Jets' 16-7 win against Baltimore -- which is considered the most famous upset in the game's history.

 

The Dolphins played their first 21 years at the OB, including the only undefeated season in NFL history (1972) and Dan Marino's record-breaking 48-touchdown masterpiece in 1984, before the team relocated to Dolphin Stadium in 1987.

 

But so much of the Orange Bowl's history is linked to college football, not only the Canes, but also the Orange Bowl Classic. Fourteen national champions were crowned at the OB before the game relocated to Dolphin Stadium in 1996.

 

For Hurricanes fans, none of the games at the OB was more meaningful than UM's 31-30 victory against heavily-favored Nebraska in the Jan. 1, 1984 game -- a win that gave the Hurricanes their first national title.

 

None were more jaw-dropping than Doug Flutie's 46-yard ''Hail Flutie'' pass that landed in the arms of Gerard Phelan and gave Boston College a 47-45 win over the Hurricanes on Nov. 23, 1984, in the most replayed ending in college football history.

 

But the Orange Bowl's history reaches beyond football. An estimated 57,000 fans -- the largest crowd ever for a minor-league baseball game -- watched 50-year-old Satchel Paige pitch there for the Miami Marlins on Aug. 7, 1956. The minor-league Marl ins played some games there between 1956 and 1960.

 

The OB has played host to numerous international soccer matches, as well as games in the 1996 Summer Olympics and at least two pro teams -- the NASL's Toros (1972-76) and ASL's Freedom (1988-92).

 

The stadium hosted the North-South Shrine Game (college football all-star game) for many years and even had the NFL's Pro Bowl once (in 1975).

 

The Rolling Stones, Michael Jackson, Madonna, the Eagles and Bruce Springsteen all performed in the Orange Bowl. Prince chose the OB as the site for the finale of his celebrated Purple Rain Tour in 1985. But the OB hasn't had a concert since Metallica in 1999 because most headline acts prefer to play in indoor arenas or newer outdoor stadiums.

 

The Orange Bowl has hosted boxing, wrestling, tractor pulls, even a Canadian Football League exhibition game in 1995 that was intended to gauge Miami's viability for a CFL expansion team. Alas, the crowd disappointed and the CFL never expanded he re.

 

The Orange Bowl wasn't even called the Orange Bowl until 1959. Built for $340,000, it opened in 1937 as Burdine Stadium, named after Roddy Burdine, one of Miami's pioneers. The stadium was christened in Georgia's 26-0 win over the Hurricanes on D ec. 10, 1937. The Orange Bowl Classic began in 1935, but moved to Burdine Stadium in 1938, with Auburn and Michigan State playing before 19,000.

 

The stadium originally consisted of two sideline lower decks, limiting capacity to 22,000. End zone seats were added in the 1940s, and by the 1950s, there was double-decked seating on both sidelines. At one time, capacity topped 80,000, but has shrunk in recent years to 72,319.

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More of the same from MLB posted on the Marlins' site

 

 

MIAMI -- Stadium haggling has gone on for years in the Marlins' quest for a retractable-roof ballpark.

As the laborious process plods along, talks continue and Major League Baseball officials remain hopeful something could get done before the first of the year.

 

However, a number of major hurdles need to be cleared.

 

The Marlins have agreed that the new park, estimated at $490 million, would be built at the Orange Bowl location. Initially, the club and MLB favored a downtown spot just south of the Miami Arena. With that plan now off the table, the Marlins are seeking to lower their contribution, a move that has upset a number of Miami-Dade County officials.

 

Speaking to reporters a few days ago at the General Managers Meetings in Orlando, Fla., MLB president and chief operating officer Bob DuPuy addressed Florida's stadium efforts.

 

"The level of contribution the team makes has to be commensurate with what they believe they're going to be able to generate from a new ballpark and be viable," DuPuy said.

 

DuPuy has been in steady contact with South Florida officials, and he met a week ago with Miami-Dade County manager George Burgess.

 

"The [financial projections] would suggest that the Orange Bowl site would not necessarily generate as much as downtown," DuPuy added. "We hope we're wrong. We all hope that the Orange Bowl site will be every bit as good as downtown. But there are concerns about it."

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lol yesterday MLB was worried, today close to a deal, tomorrow...

...the Rays get a stadium, which hopefully will light a fire under Loria's ass as he'd hate to be shown up by his in-state rivals.

We need to stop applying concepts of appearances of intergrity to the Loria regime. He has a spin "excuse" for every promise broken, for every comment made, for every agreement in principle. There is no circumstance where a fire will light his butt as long as he can maximize, regardless of competitive integrity, his complete profit. If the team happens to luck out and compete, he can point to that as part of his plan. If they flop, which is more likely, well, his pockets will bulge and really, that is all that he cares about. I agree that making money is a goal, just to what extreme. The other owners need to make this worm squirm before any fire is lit under his butt. He really holds all the cards at this time. He has no incentive to agree with anything YET. He could move the team and play in a minor league park and still make 10's of millions in revenue sharing and .com revenue.

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Well, its from at least August, since it said that in August the Hurricanes announced they would move from the Orange Bowl to Dolphins Stadium. It was at 10, hopefully, this morning. Theres an article at the Florida Marlins NEWS in the Sunsentinel which is dated at Nov. 7th, the title is: MLB: Orange Bowl site worth less to Marlins. The video is on top.

Article and Video

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He could move the team and play in a minor league park and still make 10's of millions in revenue sharing and .com revenue.

 

You really have no idea how the business of baseball works do you?

 

Do you think the rest of the owners would let him move into a minor league park because it would take a vote by the executive committee then a vote of all the owners before he can move the team anywhere.

 

Or is it you're blinded by your hatred you're not thinking straight?

 

If you guys want to hate Loria that's fair. You're a fan, you are entitled to your opinion. I'm not going to tell you what to think. But if your belief system is founded on thoughts like this you really ought to take a few minutes to reevaluate your position.

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I think his basic position is that Loria is content staying in this kind of situation (no stadium, small budget, small revenue) because he is profitting nicely. True, the value of the franchise will likely go up more with a good stadium deal. Nevertheless, if his gross profit is in the neighborhood of 30-40 million yearly it makes sense for Loria to be okay with that. Over a five year period he could profit $150-200 million!

 

The problem lies in the incentive structure of MLB. Loria's decisions, in his mind, are business decisions. If the incentive structure of MLB didn't reward this kind of behavior financially he wouldn't be doing it.

 

I honestly think these decisions are unwise financially over the long run. You have to invest a lot to profit a lot, and he doesn't want to do that. He wants to profit with little investment. This doesn't happen in any other industry.

 

I wish Miami-Dade County would build me the structures I need to make my business ideas come true, but it doesn't work like that.

 

If he wants a downtown deal he should increase the Marlins contribution. After all, if downtown really would make this franchise incredibly profitable over the course of the 30 year lease, it would make sense to increase your contribution by $50-100 million. If the downtown site will increase the Marlins' value and profits by $250 million over 30 years compared to the OB, for example, why not increase your contribution by $100 million? You still come out ahead.

 

Perhaps he should consider making some sort of deal with a venture capital firm or some other entity that would be willing to help finance a downtown site. Creativity is a friend of profit.

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I think his basic position is that Loria is content staying in this kind of situation (no stadium, small budget, small revenue) because he is profitting nicely. True, the value of the franchise will likely go up more with a good stadium deal. Nevertheless, if his gross profit is in the neighborhood of 30-40 million yearly it makes sense for Loria to be okay with that. Over a five year period he could profit $150-200 million!

 

The problem lies in the incentive structure of MLB. Loria's decisions, in his mind, are business decisions. If the incentive structure of MLB didn't reward this kind of behavior financially he wouldn't be doing it.

 

I honestly think these decisions are unwise financially over the long run. You have to invest a lot to profit a lot, and he doesn't want to do that. He wants to profit with little investment. This doesn't happen in any other industry.

 

I wish Miami-Dade County would build me the structures I need to make my business ideas come true, but it doesn't work like that.

 

If he wants a downtown deal he should increase the Marlins contribution. After all, if downtown really would make this franchise incredibly profitable over the course of the 30 year lease, it would make sense to increase your contribution by $50-100 million. If the downtown site will increase the Marlins' value and profits by $250 million over 30 years compared to the OB, for example, why not increase your contribution by $100 million? You still come out ahead.

 

Perhaps he should consider making some sort of deal with a venture capital firm or some other entity that would be willing to help finance a downtown site. Creativity is a friend of profit.

 

Maybe he doesent know if hes gonna keep the team, so why spend money so another guy would make a profit out of it. Makesw sense

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