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Cuba Expansion


scOtt

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MSK made me think of this thread with this portion of his plan as laid out on the main page.

3) Aggressively pursue international player development in China, Cuba (once Cuba is opened for real) and Venezuela.

This is all pure speculation because who knows what will happen in Cuba. IF Cuba opens up, and Manfred keeps pushing for expansion, what do you all think of say, Havana being viable for an expansion team.

Some pros I can see:

1. RABID interest in baseball.

2. It's close, only 90 miles farther than Miami.

3. In population, area and pop. density it's about the same as Pennsylvania. (And we have 2 ML teams)

Some cons:

1. It's a poor country. Like has been said about Mexico, the population might not be able to afford "the Major League experience." It might not be economically feasible as Bud and Manfred see it.

2. Even if the country is opened up, it likely would still be a passport and visa nightmare.

So what are your thoughts?

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There was a AAA team in Havana in the 50s. Teams trained there in the spring. But that ceased when Castro took over, the Sugar Kings moved to Jersey City in mid-season 1960.

I think the team would draw well, but make the end-stage Expos seem like a cash cow. I don't think they have a stadium up to MLB standards. Teams make a very large part of their overall revenues on local TV deals, I'm not even sure most Cubans have TV and certainly can't pay $5 a person a month for an RSN. And it's hard to see the Havana team charging even a small fraction of a typical MLB team's ticket prices.

Never say never, but I'd guess it's decades before a Major League team in Cuba is viable.

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There was a AAA team in Havana in the 50s. Teams trained there in the spring. But that ceased when Castro took over, the Sugar Kings moved to Jersey City in mid-season 1960.

I think the team would draw well, but make the end-stage Expos seem like a cash cow. I don't think they have a stadium up to MLB standards. Teams make a very large part of their overall revenues on local TV deals, I'm not even sure most Cubans have TV and certainly can't pay $5 a person a month for an RSN. And it's hard to see the Havana team charging even a small fraction of a typical MLB team's ticket prices.

Never say never, but I'd guess it's decades before a Major League team in Cuba is viable.

There's an army of young, capable, entrepreneurial Cuban-Americans in south Florida salivating over the thought of the Castro's dying, which shouldn't be too much longer. My guess is a decade at most before a major league team in Havana is viable should Cuba's brand of socialism go the way of the rest of the dinosaurs.

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There's an army of young, capable, entrepreneurial Cuban-Americans in south Florida salivating over the thought of the Castro's dying, which shouldn't be too much longer. My guess is a decade at most before a major league team in Havana is viable should Cuba's brand of socialism go the way of the rest of the dinosaurs.

There's a big gap between $50(?) a month, and an average wage that could competitively support a MLB team.

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There's a big gap between $50(?) a month, and an average wage that could competitively support a MLB team.

No question that there are significant obstacles, most of them political IMO. If post-Castro Cuba quickly abandons socialism (I believe that it will) then I think the economic turnaround will be nothing short of staggering. I hope I live long enough to see it play out.

A major league team in Havana in ten years may not be likely, but it is most certainly possible.

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