MLB commissioner Rob Manfred released a statement this morning confirming that in order to boost the flagging attendance of the Tampa Bay Rays, the league will take the measure of forcing the area to receive the New York Mets should the situation not improve.
“The MLB is committed to producing entertaining teams in cities of all sizes with support that should reflect the stature of the league,” Manfred said. “And I want to be very clear, if Tampa Bay is not able to meet that standard, I will not hesitate to make sure the New York Mets franchise is relocated to the area.”
“Tampa Bay baseball fans would be smart to note the pain that can come to markets that receive the Mets," Manfred continued. "You will be subjected to ill-conceived trades and free agent signings, inept ownership, and an unwatchable team on the field. Such a fate is not what the MLB wishes for the good people of Central Florida.”
“You are better than this. While the MLB must practice due diligence for the league’s brand if things do not improve, by showing up to games, you all can be the difference that prevents baseball fans in your area from the heartbreak of gaining a franchise like the Mets.”
At press time, Manfred issued another statement warning the Oakland A’s that if their stadium situation was not fixed, the Marlins would begin playing in the city.