UPDATED: Atlanta Braves plan move to Cobb County by 2017

Via the Marietta Daily Journal:

The Atlanta Braves are expected to announce today the team plans to relocate to Cobb County with a new stadium being ready for the 2017 season. They will be leaving Turner Field after their 20 year agreement expires at the end of the 2016 season.

The new stadium will be built near the intersection of I-75 and 285. The current site is under contract and set to close in early 2014.

Details aren’t available, but one would surmise that the team will, like the Atlanta Falcons, push for a taxpayer-funded stadium.

Turner Field was built for the 1996 Summer Olympics and was converted for baseball for the 1997 season. The stadium, generally considered one of the best ballparks in MLB, will only be 20 years old when the Braves’ lease expires.

There’s no word on what will become of “The Ted.”

I really hope this report is a joke or otherwise wrong.

[UPDATE] I put in a call to the Braves’ press office to verify this. Left a message.

[UPDATE-9:13am] WSB spoken with Cobb County officials and the AJC has talked with team officials. It’s legit, folks, the Braves are moving to Cobb County.

[UPDATE-9:23am] AJC’s David O’Brien tweets: “#Braves confirm move to Cobb County in 2017. Remarkable how quiet they kept this behind-scenes maneuvering.”

[UPDATE-9:26am] Jim Galloway reports the “deal to move the Atlanta Braves to Cobb County involves $450 million in private financing arranged by the county and another $200 million put up front by the baseball team that first moved to Atlanta in 1965, we’re told.”

“There’s a Wednesday meeting at the state Capitol at which the Braves will discuss the move with Gov. Nathan Deal and Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed,” he added.

[UPDATE-9:30am] The Atlanta Braves just tweeted: “We are excited to announce plans to build a world-class stadium, which will open in 2017 at the NW intersection of I-75/I-285.” In a separate tweet, the team says, “We have secured a large tract of property at this location & will work to build a world-class ballpark for our fans.”

They are directing fans to HomeOfTheBraves.com for updates.

[UPDATE-9:42am] The Braves have posted a message from John Schuerholz, team president, in which he explains the reasoning behind the move.

[UPDATE-9:47am] Via Galloway, here’s a look at the location of the proposed new stadium.


    • Scott65 says:

      Look at the Mayors full statement:
      “The Atlanta Braves are one of the best baseball teams in America, and I wish them well. We have been working very hard with the Braves for a long time, and at the end of the day, there was simply no way the team was going to stay in downtown Atlanta without city taxpayers spending hundreds of millions of dollars to make that happen. It is my understanding that our neighbor, Cobb County, made a strong offer of $450M in public support to the Braves, and we are simply unwilling to match that with taxpayer dollars. Given the needs facing our city and the impact of Turner Field stadium on surrounding neighborhoods, that was something I, and many others were unwilling to do. We have been planning for the possibility of this announcement and have already spoken to multiple organizations who are interested in redeveloping the entire Turner Field corridor. Over the next three years, we will be working with our prospective partners to bring residential and business development that is worthy of our city and strengthens our downtown. Those conversations will continue and I am excited about how we use the land that is now Turner Field, to be a tremendous asset for our residents, our city, and our region for years to come.”

      If that doesn’t look like the Mayor calling their bluff I dont know what does. This seems like an obvious negotiating ploy…and if they thought they could get Reed to crumble, they dont know Atlanta’s mayor very well.

  1. Charlie says:

    Assuming this is true (and it’s not that I doubt the reporting of the MDJ, but I can’t claim to have heard a peep about this in Cobb – everyone involved has done a great job of keeping this secret), it does help explain the determination that Mayor Reed kept around keeping the Falcons at all costs.

    My feeling is that the Braves have concluded that it is getting harder and harder to get suburbanites intown 82 nights per year. This likely has a lot more to do with attracting and maintaining a fan base than it does what “deal” could be extracted from the city.

    As such, if Mayor Reed was aware that was the Braves’ intentions, then the motivation for “not being the Mayor that lost the Atlanta Falcons” was a bit higher than was publicly obvious.

    Still not a huge fan of that deal, but it does help put the politics behind it into a bit more perspective.

    • The biggest mistake all of the people behind MARTA ever made was not building a line to Fulton County/Turner Field. I’m told by people who know that the “logic” behind that decision was “it will only be used 82 days a year”. Of course, the right way to think about it would have been “we can showcase MARTA 82 times to people who would otherwise never ride it”.

      I’m hoping that they have some sort of transit option at the new site. Could this be a backdoor to getting a real transit option to Cobb? They don’t have anything specific, but they do talk about how the transit options to the existing stadium aren’t good. So many questions.

      • gt7348b says:

        To stick with factual history, there was a plan in the 70s for a line past the stadium down to Lakewood. It was called the Model Cities line. Also, one of the projects rejected by the Regional Roundtable was a one station extension from Garnett to Turner Field.

    • braves4life says:

      Which is definitely much more civilized than thugs, tattoos, gangs, rap music, saggy drawers, etc. (the list goes on and on) currently associated with the NBA. Just think of it as more “Hope & Change” that’s headed to Cobb. As a Cobb resident, now I can save a few bucks on gas and not drive to Fulton Co. to see my Braves that I’ve followed since they arrived in ATL, and YES, I was there the night Hank hit 715-will never forget it. Go Braves, thanks for coming closer to my house!

  2. There was an article a few months ago about how the Braves were discontent, not so much with The Ted but with the City for failed promises. No redevelopment around the stadium, Fanplex etc…

    I guess they watched Atlanta pull out all the stops to give the Falcons what they wanted, saw the negative public reaction and thought there would be no chance they could get a good deal.

    • xdog says:

      That’s a good point. You go to Turner for a ballgame and then you leave when it’s over. No bars or restaurants, no Marta, some iffy parking.

  3. xdog says:

    The Braves have kept a very close lid on all their moves since they got played by Furcal’s agent several years ago but this news sets new marks for being out of the blue.

    I’m curious to find out how much money Cobb is kicking in. They better hope they get a better deal than Gwinnett did when Cool-Ray was built, although in truth it would be hard not to.

  4. Max Power says:

    Um, where will they put the freakin’ stadium. In case the Braves haven’t noticed 30339 is pretty packed already. About the only vacant space I can find that would fit the stadium is by circle 75 and that would require rerouting some roads. Expect the locals, like myself to raise all kinds of hell. You don’t spend 250K on a condo to fight braves traffic.

    • Charlie says:

      It’s the circle 75 office park. There’s a bunch of undeveloped land there, and it was just sold recently to new owners.

      It also has a decent secondary traffic grid already in place between Cobb Parkway and Windy Hill/Powers Ferry. Essentially the major arteries that take traffic off of 75/285.

      Luckily, the Braves don’t play during Christmas, when mall & retail traffic in the area is at it’s worst.

      • Max Power says:

        Unfortunately when things go to hell on 75 & 285 those roads clog pretty fast. I love where I live it’s convenient to basically everywhere. I can be downtown, or to perimeter or marietta in 10 minutes. I cheered when they built the Cobb Energy Center on a truck drop lot even though I had secretly hoped that it would become a station on a NW Marta line. I’m just not sure adding a 50,000 seat stadium to the area will improve life for those of us who live here.

        • Charlie says:

          Yes, but when the downtown connector clogs, it backs up 75, 85, and 400.

          It really is a matter of picking your poison, and the Braves are choosing the one that gets them closer to the center of the fan base. And one where there can be more of a place where people will gather before the game and perhaps linger a bit after.

    • South Fulton Guy says:

      That is pretty funny. I wonder how many buses will be necessary to support fans who don’t want to drive and which MARTA rail stations there will be shuttles from.

      • pettifogger says:

        A) You’re assuming they can’t get rail.

        B) The transportation to Turner was a joke. Get on a bus in Underground Atlanta? That has City of Atlanta written all over it.

        C) Places with MARTA access aren’t where Braves fans are concentrated anyway. Even if there was good MARTA access to Turner (there isn’t) it doesn’t matter too much when you’ve got to drive 10 miles to park in a pay lot to get on a train to get on a bus.

        • While I agree with some of your points, C) indicates you haven’t ridden MARTA recently or ever. There is no station suburban station that would require you to pay if your trip is under 24 hours.

          • pettifogger says:

            It really just exposes that I only drive to MARTA for some airport visits (overnight).

            FWIW, I almost always do MARTA for the Braves and for CFA Bowl, SECCG, etc. Probably like most Atlantans. To the airport too, but only if I’m coming from in town.

        • South Fulton Guy says:

          RE: A) Rail from what transit entity? Cobb County Transit does not even run buses on Sundays and MARTA is only in Fulton and DeKalb. Do you really think there will be federal dollars to fund rail for a transit system that does not operate daily?

          • pettifogger says:

            I honestly don’t know, but considering transportation is being touted as a top 3 reason for the move, I’m guessing there will be efforts made. Could just be for show, but I don’t see how it will be any worse than what Turner has.

            In the end, I think they looked at the southside/downtown sector and asked whether it would be the better, the same, or worse in a decade.

      • Bill Dawers says:

        Ok, crazy idea, I admit.

        But the Atlanta metro area has more than twice as many residents as Cincy, Cleveland, St. Louis, KC, Baltimore, Milwaukee, and some other MLB cities too.

        Doesn’t the “center of logistics in the Western Hemisphere” warrant two teams? (Kidding, sort of.)

    • pettifogger says:

      Yeah wouldn’t happen. Most of the Braves viewers in the area are up there anyway.

      This is a shrewd move for the Braves and Cobb. It’ll be weird, but if they can get transit and development around the stadium, it’ll be a major victory. Braves aren’t pulling any punches, and are basically saying this had to be done because the area sucked and won’t be getting any better. Same is true for most of downtown. Atlanta is going to have to do something to keep up with cities that are pumping money into places where it’ll pay more longterm dividends (i.e., not downtown), and this may eventually be a boost for the region. Continuing to concentrate nice things in a part of town that isn’t good to nice things isn’t a great strategy.

        • The Last Democrat in Georgia says:

          “Gwinnett traffic swinging around 285 instead of staying 85S to get to a weeknight game will be interesting.”

          …That’s a really nice way of putting it.

      • Charlie says:

        I’ve done that commute on and off since the late 80’s. It’s just as quick and easy (and usually more predictable on eta) to go from PTC/Newnan to Cumberland as it is to go to downtown. The West Side Perimeter is actually one of the few remaining usually open arteries during rush hour. “Usually”.

  5. Joshua Morris says:

    I think they’re gonna regret this move. Younger fans may not care, but those who have been fans for decades and who like the ambience of going downtown to see the Braves play under the skyline may stay home after 2016.

    • pettifogger says:

      I question whether those older fans really enjoy their visits to that part of town, though. They probably lost that when we razed Fulton Co.

    • TheEiger says:

      You are joking right. “the ambience of going downtown to see the Braves play” You know how I know you only go to one Saturday Braves game a year? Because of that dumb statement. No one like driving in Atlanta rush hour traffic to get to a Wednesday or Thursday 7pm game. Some of us that go to multiple games a year love this idea. Can’t wait until 2017.

      • Baker says:

        You dont like driving in Atlanta rush hour but youre going to like driving around 285 and the I-75 interchange? Thats a “dumb statement”

      • Joshua Morris says:

        I started going to Braves games in 1982 at Fulton County Stadium. I still remember cheering for people like Chris Chambliss, Claudell Washington, Bruce Benedict, Glenn Hubbard, etc. I lived in Riverdale back then, and I live in Gainesville now, so I’ve made trips to the ballpark from north and south. My dad worked at the Russell Federal Building for nearly twenty years, and we used to park there and hoof it to Braves & Hawks games (back to the Omni days). Please tell me again what I don’t know about traffic in Atlanta and the ambience of a game under the Atlanta skyline?

        I’m sure the north side of 285 will be a beautiful drive for folks getting to the new stadium in 2017. There’s your joke.

        • DawgFaithful says:


          I appreciate that you have a been a devoted Braves fan for so long but I really don’t think the Braves care that much about the Older fans. Older fans die and this is a move for the future. There is NO future in what you call the “ambiance of Downtown”. That’s for sure. The only ambiance that the current location has is that of homeless, beggars, crack-heads and panhandlers. That’s not my kind of ambiance. I prefer a clean, crime free area where I can take my family and not have to worry about our safety. This ambiance you speak of is the main reason this move is happening. And it’s south of the Skyline really. You can’t see any skyline from the current stadium. It’s in the hood for crying out loud. There really is no perfect spot for a stadium but this new location beats the hell out of the current one. Positive move for the Braves even if I have to pay more taxes.

  6. Baker says:

    I’ll be planning a trip to see my favorite team next year…they play at Wrigley Field…there a lot of day games and it should be great…anyone is welcome to join.

    • George Dickel says:

      Still with the SPSU conspiracy theories? Are you a crazy person?

      The campus is over 5 miles away from the new site. Georgia Tech is closer to Turner Field.

  7. rwlee2 says:

    In an era where cities are seeking to build redevelopment schemes around urban brownfields the Braves choose to head out of downtown to what essentially a greenfield site. Just proves one thing – Atlanta is going to sprawl and sprawl and sprawl and sprawl and sprawl and sprawl and sprawl….you get the point…

    There is no urban core here.

  8. Max Power says:

    Hey here’s one thing about the site that only locals know. It’s right next to the Circle 75 shaft of the main Cobb Wastewater tunnel. As a result that area frequently stinks to high heaven especially in the early morning (not a problem for the braves) and early evening (might be a problem).

  9. Engineer says:

    How about those Marietta Braves???? Seriously though, looks like longer drives for people south of the fall line to go to the games.

  10. drjay says:

    it makes sense really, it seems odd on the surface as the facility is only a few years old, but when hicks like me come to atl for braves games we frankly a little freaked out by the people sleeping under the overpass and all the boarded up properties within eyesight of the stadium–i suppose we are not typical because we don’t live in atl, but we try to get to a couple of games every year and we stay by the airport, or with friends and the only thing we do in the area around the stadium is go to the game, there is no where to eat before or after or any other reason to hang out there…i can understand the braves desire to be elsewhere…

  11. South Fulton Guy says:

    AP: The Braves did not explain how it will be easier to access a new stadium that will located at the interchange for two of Atlanta’s busiest interstates, I-75 and I-285, and has been plagued by major traffic problems for years — despite I-75 being expanded as wide as seven lanes near the new stadium site.

    Also, the new stadium cannot be accessed by MARTA, the city’s major rapid transit system. Cobb County has its own, much-smaller bus system. Team officials only say there will be a reliable means of driving to and from the stadium.”

  12. South Fulton Guy says:

    Ownership of Turner field by the Braves was not an issue since the new the stadium will be owned by the Cobb-­Marietta Coliseum and Exhibit Hall Authority, which also owns the Cobb Galleria Centre and Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre.

  13. Ellynn says:

    Right now, my father, who was left heart broken and very anger when his beloved Braves snuck out of Milwaukee in secret, is looking down from heaven right now with a smirk on his face…

    • DawgFaithful says:

      Good Lord. Please get a life. This is a win in every sense of the word. Don’t be one of those people that stands in the way of progress. You don’t even look like much of Braves fan from your picture. Turner field is in the GHETTO. There’s nowhere to eat or hang out near the stadium. It’s in the worst place possible traffic wise. This is progress.

      • Baker says:

        A) Tearing down stadiums every 20 years isn’t progress
        B) How can you judge someone a Braves fan because they have a pic of themselves in their icon? You don’t look like a Braves fan either. You look like nothing.
        C) You don’t know what a ghetto is.
        D) You’re right that there’s nowhere to eat or anything…except for all of Atlanta which is within a few minutes of the stadium by car, train or foot.
        E) Worst possible traffic wise? I’m betting the 75/ 285 interchange might be worse.

        • DawgFaithful says:

          A)Oh I’m sorry. You’re a glass half-empty kind of douche. I don’t look at it as tearing down stadiums. No one ever said they were tearing Turner Field down anyway. That’s your assumption. You know what they say about people who assume. According to the Mayor it will be renovated and used for other purposes(GA State Football). I look at it as building something new, rebirth, progress if you will. Helps GA State Football, Helps the Braves, Helps the majority of Braves fans. Helps Downtown traffic. All wins.

          B)She’s blonde and she’s starting a petition to put a stop to this. Sounds more like a Green Peace activist than a Braves fan. I could be wrong about her but Everyone I’ve talked to about this today is excited, Especially the Braves fans!

          C)I don’t know what a ghetto is? Sure I do. “Ghetto: 1. (n.) an impoverished, neglected, or otherwise disadvantaged residential area of a city” It’s not that hard to figure out. This perfectly describes the area that Turner Field is in. Don’t take it so personally.

          D)What restaurant can you walk to from Turner Field other than The Bullpen? None what so ever. Even if there were that would bring up another problem. I don’t want to have my family walking after dark in the ghetto. Your train idea is out the window since no train currently runs to Turner Field. If I take MARTA there, I have to get off at Underground Atlanta and take a bus the rest of the way. Again, I don’t want to walk with my family after dark any where near Underground Atlanta. Food a few minutes from the stadium by car? Yeah when there’s no ball game. On game day/night you can’t get anywhere from the stadium within a “few minutes”. That’s exactly why they’re moving it numbnuts. What they’re proposing now would put food, ample parking(Which is another current problem) and shopping within walking distance from the stadium. There will be absolutely no bums or panhandlers or homeless allowed. They’ll still be down in the ghetto hassling the GaState football fans at the old field and all around Underground Atlanta. They’re saying it will be open 365 days/year and it’s going to generate millions of more dollars for the surrounding area.

          E) True. Traffic is going to be bad but there really isn’t a place in the city that you could put a stadium that won’t cause traffic. All I know is, where the stadium is now, you have 1 way in and 1 way out(75). You can try to take I-20 and cut through back ways but it’s even worse than 75. At least with this new location the majority of people coming to these games will have an easier trip. And there are a lot more options that just 75 to get to this new location. I work in Sandy Springs by Northside Hospital. I can take backroads all the way to the stadium from here and so can the surrounding residents. We’ll have 41, 285, 75 and Powers Ferry. More options mean less congestion. No way it will be any worse than what we have now.

          • Baker says:

            @Ed you want to take this one or do I have to respond to this giant post?

            @DawgFaithful, please call me names some more, it really helps your argument.

            • DawgFaithful says:

              I’m not trying to win an argument. If you think you’re in an argument then at least have your facts in line and try to make valid points. The new stadium is happening. It’s a done deal. Get on board with it or GFYS. I’m sure the homeless and panhandlers would love your company. You can take the Blonde chick, her petition and your boy Baker and spend some quality time with them.

                • DawgFaithful says:

                  I live in Buckhead. Now I can hop on 41 or 75 and take a short ride up TO the perimeter, not outside it. The site for the new stadium has an Atlanta address for crying out loud. You act like they’re moving to Kennesaw. If I never have to set foot in DT Atlanta again, it will be too soon. I’m not really worried about who will miss me jackass. And yes it is safer OTP. You be safe when you go DT, you hear?

                  • Andre says:

                    Honest question, “DawgFaithful,” have you even bothered to ask the people of Cobb County if they want a ballpark in their backyard, or are you one of those people who want to make decisions about communities that will never impact you?

                  • MattMD says:

                    I’m fine with the move but I don’t think downtown is nearly as dangerous as you make it out to be.

                    You need to stop with the name-calling.

              • DawgFaithful says:

                Ed. Like I said. I live in Buckhead. If you feel like you spend too much time on the internet then get a job and stay off of here you loser.

                • griftdrift says:

                  Because only people in Buckhead and OTP have jobs. We’re all just losers. If only we could be enlightened like the people of the great white way of Buckhead. Oh lawdy. I do have dreams.

                • Baker says:

                  More to come, I’ll just do it in bits and pieces:

                  (Let’s all try to remain civil if possible)

                  I’m not one to believe that continuously just pumping money into schools is the answer for better educated children.
                  I’m not one to believe that investing in ridiculously expensive trains that haul around fractions of people claimed by proponents is the answer for awful traffic.
                  I also don’t believe higher taxes are any panacea for homelessness, drug abuse and mental health programs, or minority improvement.

                  However, I damned well know that investing hundreds of millions invested into the facilities of sports franchises is not a wise investment for the betterment of a society as a whole. This use of taxpayer money for things that only the rich benefit from, like bank bail outs or stadiums with super high ticket prices (and Braves ticket prices are going to go up have no doubt) is getting out of control…

                  The free market is being strangled once again by the very wealthy and the political class. The lower class have subsidies from the government, the wealthy can pay their way of lots of things, and the middle class gets screwed…sounds about right.

    • Michael Silver says:

      I love this dig from Mayor Reed ….

      “Cobb County, made a strong offer of $450 million in public support to the Braves and we are simply unwilling to match that with taxpayer dollars. “

  14. Harry says:

    Buzz, referring to your comment above, unfortunately the Gwinnett Gladiators hockey team has a record so far this season of 2 – 8. My daughter went to last night’s game (with Greenville) and reported the colosseum was only about 1/3 full. Rumor is they may not be around much longer.

      • Harry says:

        Gladiator attendance is down 12% from last year, and hasn’t been at this current level since they suspended operations in 2002 due to poor attendance. Evidently the Sunday game attendance was really bad. Yes, attendance hits exactly the league average, but that’s not good enough. In this market their advertising and probably rental cost must be considerably higher than Greenville, Evansville or Wheeling. And with their 2 – 8 record they’re not real competitive. Bottom line for me, Gwinnett County has spent a ton of money on Gwinnett Coliseum and Coolray Field but have the taxpayers really received benefit?

  15. Michael Silver says:

    Let me be the first to nominate a name for the stadium ….. Gordon Wysong Stadium.

    The Braves will be amazed at how easy it is operate when they encounter a county government that is efficient, not corrupt, and smart. Hopefully, the county will prohibit the pan handlers, scalpers, urban campers, gypsy lots, and other plagues that make going into Atlanta sucky.

    My house is within 10 mins of the stadium so I’m hopeful its done right, otherwise its going to suck to be me.

      • Michael Silver says:

        Why? They don’t need too.

        I would bet Cobb would be more open to buses from other counties operating to and from the stadium than Atlanta who didn’t even want MARTA nearby.

    • “The Braves will be amazed at how easy it is operate when they encounter a county government that is efficient, not corrupt, and smart.”

      Hang on a second, you lost me. I thought the Braves were moving to Cobb?

  16. Three Jack says:

    Ironic that the stadium will be built in a county named for a former senator who was chairman of the Committee on Public Expenditures. Reportedly county taxpayers will be on the hook for over $400M of the $672M cost (not counting the millions that will be needed for area improvement to public roads and other facilities). Wonder how ol Tom Cobb would have reacted?

    • John Konop says:

      Also MLB Baseball is sinking in ratings……while NFL football is exploding…..This might not be a good long term bet!


      ……..Why do baseball ratings continue to trend downward?………

      ………..Despite continued commitment to primetime games, ratings for Fox Saturday Baseball appear headed for another all-time low after spending five straight weeks getting whipped head-to-head by playoff hockey. Ratings finally picked up a bit, though, drawing a 2.5 vs. a 2.0 last week against Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final.

      ESPN’s ratings remain unremarkable, though Sunday Night Baseball perked up a bit for Yankees-Orioles on the most recent Sunday night telecast. It scored a 1.6 overnight rating, barely beating its lead-in, the Brazil-Spain final at the Confederations Cup, which garnered a 1.5. We can talk all day and night about how it’s the final of an international soccer tournament vs. baseball in June, but we were not having this conversation 10 years ago

      We’re specifically not having this conversation nine years ago, because that’s the last time MLB on Fox ratings were going up consistently year-to-year. Let’s take a look at baseball’s year-to-year numbers on broadcast for the past decade, via Sports Business Journal. Aside from 2011, you can obviously see a trend………


      • Three Jack says:


        TV ratings may show a decline for the Fox Saturday game, but I would bet the Braves have at least remained even if not improved over the past few years.

        I don’t think there will be much difficulty paying off whatever bonds are issued to cover Cobb’s part of the deal. But is it a wise use of public funds when traffic is such a mess throughout most parts of the county? $400M (if that is Cobb’s portion) would go a long way toward fixing many of the troublesome areas if the same amount of money could be raised for transportation as will be needed for the stadium.

        Personally I kind of like this idea and have been a proponent of it for many years. I may not have the same feeling 4 years from now when I’m stuck in total gridlock attempting to get home from work where I try to earn enough to pay the increase in property taxes to cover the cost of the facility that causes the traffic.

        • John Konop says:


          I agree it could hurt with traffic….Baseball is having a hard time with the younger generation via the pace of the game…..I like baseball…..but my kids and their friends do not…Yet they all love football…..

          …….“Tradition” vs “Flash” – From a younger demo perspective, baseball has lost its luster, in large part due to the ascension of Michael Jordan. Baseball is touted as having a “long and prestigious tradition” which doesn’t exactly compete well with the high-energy tempo of the NBA, NFL, and NHL. As one scribe wrote, baseball is a game of calm, punctuated by extreme action. That sounds great… if you’re older. In an era where kids are looking for ultra-stimulus, baseball’s pace is lost in translation. When 18-34s have the lion’s share of discretionary income, baseball isn’t the first stop for some corporations with a young demo appeal when looking to advertise……..


          • Three Jack says:


            Moving the major league team to an area where baseball rules for the younger generation will likely be a big win for the team and game. Cobb County was a desired destination for many major leaguers from all over the country who went through the East Cobb program. Most of the high schools here have experienced great success on the diamond, not so much on the football field or basketball court.

            Liberty Media and the Braves are re-locating to one of the hottest baseball locales in US, probably won’t hurt the chances of attracting more interest/attendance from a younger crowd.

            • seekingtounderstand says:

              Dear Cobb County………….. Congratulations! One day our recession will end and we will boom again. Demographics point at the year 2019 and beyond as a great boom time. The Braves will give your county true excitement and encourage growth and re-development! Lots of jobs!
              Atlanta you have the excitement of the Falcons and what could come to the old braves site! Maybe now that area will be open to new ideas and start a building boom! Congratulations on all the success coming your way in the future.

      • David C says:

        As far as “Game of the Week” comparisons, it’s an apples and oranges, 162 vs. 16 comparison. The NFL product is incredibly scarce and so draws high individual ratings. But for baseball, which reaches your home generally not through the Fox / ESPN Game of the Week but rather the nightly basic cable network, that business is booming. Teams either have an in house network like the Yankees (YES Network), own a big chunk of outside one like the Red Sox (own 80% of NESN) or sell the rights for a huge amount of money like the Dodgers ($7 billion over 25 years from Time Warner cable) or Rangers ($3 billion over 20). Looking at it from that perspective, that business is booming, even if not quite on the NFL level.

        • John Konop says:


          You are right short term, but the long term trend does not look good…..Baseball really needs to speed the game up for younger viewers in my opinion.


          Bad News For Baseball: World Series Viewers Are Getting Older And Older

          …….So here’s a shocking statistic: The median age of the 2012 World Series television viewer was 53.4, the highest in more than 20 years, and probably of all time, according to Brad Adgate of Horizon Media.

          In case you’re wondering, the median viewer of 2013 NBA championships was just 41. And the NFL? Everybody watches the Super Bowl, so it doesn’t provide much in the way of meaningful data. But so far this season, the median age of prime-time professional football viewers is under 45……..


  17. Scott65 says:

    Hmmm…so Cobb taxpayers are willing to fork over 450 million for a new stadium (and more for surface improvements) in an area that has a congestion problem already. That has no appreciable connection via transit (and to build one you can add another 200 million on to of that).
    Has anyone thought that this might be a negotiating tactic by the Braves for a better (sweeter) deal from the city?
    Also, if this was the other way around you people would be screaming bloody murder as if they were coming for your first born! If Cobb Co residents are willing to shell out 600 million for a new stadium, you sure lose a whole lot of credibility on your “no spending” hysteria…you for this Harry?

  18. Scott65 says:

    …as a side note…its remarkable beyond belief that nobody had any clue this was coming. You dont get many pure surprises like this these days

  19. Mrs. Adam Kornstein says:

    Welcome to Lester Maddox Memorial Ballpark, please see the John Birch Society for your programs and souvenirs, on the mezzanine level you can bully a gay kid.

  20. Rick Day says:

    Isn’t this the same mayor who thumped his custom shirted chest a few months ago and declared “I will not be known as the mayor who lost the Falcons”?

    The same mayor who thought having the Falcon’s stadium in Atlanta was so important he bullied a cash deal to sell out part of Black American history?

    Can someone do an economic study on the impact of MLB in Atlanta vs the NFL?

    Would this have been a factor in the elections if announced last Monday? No. August? Well now…why was the TED a back room secret yet DOME2 was public fodder?


    • Baker says:

      “Would this have been a factor in the elections if announced last Monday? No. August? Well now…why was the TED a back room secret yet DOME2 was public fodder?”

      Been wondering the same thing.

      And as for MLB vs NFL? My temptation would be to immediate say NFL but gracious, how can 8 games outweigh 81?

      • Rick Day says:

        Bigger question: If Reed knew that both teams wanted new digs, why didn’t he negotiate a consolidation into a super stadium that both teams could use? The leagues should have little trouble scheduling around each other.

        So instead of looking to lose one and build for one, I could have seen the rationalization behind a publically funded event and entertainment complex. I’d love to do some large music shows in the City of Atlanta but there is, ahem, no competition so the rates, restrictions and terms are crappy.

        I guess I am a big thinking guy, but not a good super evil bidnessman. Why create one sweet deal good for all when you can sponge on two for a few of your buddies?

        • +1.

          I haven’t had a chance to read all the news stories on this but I wonder if the Braves brass were a) jealous of the City going out of it’s way to make the Falcons happy and b) tired of dealing with the City after years of unkept promises about revitalizing the Turner field area. Don’t forget this fight over street vendors started in the Turner field parking lot.

          I know I’m on the outside looking in but there doesn’t seem to have been a whole lot of communication between the Braves and the City.

      • John Konop says:


        The Falcons owner is heavily into soccer as well. We will see more and more specialty soccer events in Atlanta. The city is on the short list for a MLS team, Mr. Blanks would be the guy…..Soccer is growing, while baseball attendance is on a slide….The braves are off about 10k a game from peak period…..Also TV ratings are down as well……btw the falcons with preseason games draw almost 2.5 times per game…..with a bigger stadium, one can assume it will be over 3 times per game…..

        From an ROI the falcons on 10 dates will draw around 40 percent of the attendance as the Braves in the new stadium. If you add special events…….and eventually soccer the falcons look like a better investment.

        It could be the Braves are betting on the location helping attendance…….as a baseball fan I am not sold on the game long term…..I see my kids generation not liking the pace of the game…..Not that baseball will go away, I think it will just have a major adjustment…..I bet as soccer keeps growing it will target baseball season here. Combine that with the generation X sports that are growing the old game faces major competition squeeze…..the other sports rules are being changed in football, basketball……to increase pace of game……not sure how baseball does that?

    • South Fulton Guy posted this link earlier.

      The Atlanta Braves have an annual economic impact of more than $100 million — paying $8.6 million in state and local taxes each year.

      That’s according to a new study that measures the team’s contribution to the Georgia economy. The findings are being released just as the Braves begin efforts to renegotiate their lease of Turner Field. The current lease expires Dec. 31, 2016.

      “We wanted to show what we do to drive the economy in our region,” said Mike Plant, executive vice president of business operations for the Braves.

      • John Konop says:

        The problem with studies like that…..it assumes people would not spend the money on other forms of entertainment. You could argue the money may concentrate based on a location…..but to argue it some how the majority of spendong on the Braves created extra economics over a shift in entertaining spending would be difficult….

  21. SmyrnaModerate says:

    Just a few things to add, its not really true to say that Turner Field is in downtown Atlanta, its in Southeast Atlanta which is a whole different ballgame (if you’ll excuse the pun). If it were really downtown near the other sports venues and the hotel/convention district there is no chance this would be happening. The Atlanta downtown police zone has the lowest crime rate in the city, the zone Turner Field is in has one of the highest. As many in the thread have also already said, “you can’t get there from here, and when you do there isn’t anything to do there.” Contrast that with all the restaurants/bars around Olympic Park that have sprung up as well as everything around the hotels that caters to the convention crowd thats an easy 10 minute walk to the Dome and Phillips.

    As someone who also lives 10 minutes from the proposed site, I really wish my elected leaders didn’t spring this on us out of the blue and to add even more shadiness to the deal schedule the vote for what appears to be the week of Thanksgiving. I’m cautiously optimistic about the idea, but I also know as it looks now this is an area that has very few entry and exit points for vehicular traffic and roads that were designed for 9-5 office parks, not 40k people descending and all trying to leave at the same time. I shudder at the thought of what the Cobb Parkway & 285 exit ramps will look like at say 530 with fans streaming in and workers streaming out.

    We all know these aren’t the real numbers anyway and this will all cost a lot more. there will need to be all kinds of roadway improvements (maybe even new exits off of 75, the perimeter or both) that no one is talking about now but we all know is coming. I’m going to be fascinated to see how much money the Republican legislature ponies up in state money and attempts to label as something else to make this work.

  22. Baker says:

    I’d love to know what impact the Fulton County Recreation Authority had on this deal. That been reported anywhere? The Rec Authority is the group responsible for Turner Field. The Fulton County Commission is notorious for poisonous rhetoric and bad tactics. That commission has a lot of influence over the Rec Authority. Any connection to the Braves bailing?

  23. Three Jack says:

    Jeff Schultz’ column in the AJC sums it up pretty well for old timers like me; what happened to going to a baseball game to watch baseball? It seems we have come to a point where the facility is more important than the actual team for attracting customers (fans).

    Give me 9 innings in old Luther Williams Field any day over a game at the Ted or whatever new park we end up with in Cobb County. No frills, no Kevin Rathbun $15 sandwiches, no suites, no cartoon room, just a ball field next to the railroad tracks with players trying to win a game.

    • Napoleon says:

      The trouble is you have to pay for those multi-million dollar player contracts somehow. Counting for inflation, the most Babe Ruth ever made was $1.4 million a year. A-Rod made $29 million this season.

  24. Noway says:

    Well, there are roughly 146 (as I type this from overseas) gullible people who think this will actually happen.


    Do you think the anti poverty pimps are just gonna lay back and take this? See my previous answer.
    What about the sainted “poor” who won’t be able to see a game because they don’t have a way to get there? How about the story of the minority athlete they’ll trot out to give his testimonial of the spark of inspiration he got from watching the Braves in Downtown?
    Do you think Mayor Reed will let himself be pilloried as the “Uncle Tom” who sold out to “the Man?” Clarence Thomas would be MLK by comparison. I’m surprised Sharpton and Jesse haven’t weighed in yet. This is the very definition and poster boy for “White Flight!”
    And to the posters who wondered why a deal with this much obvious complexity was announced after the Atlanta mayoral election? You’re right. Cause ole Kasim could have kissed his political rear-end goodbye if he’d announced, say, back in January, that this was in the works.
    This is the best political move I have ever seen! Pure genius. The black community will raise so much holy hell that I’ll bet even Obama weighs in. Money gets “found.” Donations from those politically-incorrect bastards start rolling in by the bulldozer load. No fuss, no muss!
    Let the apologies from those who even considered a deal like this come rolling in.

  25. Dave Bearse says:

    Good luck getting to a weekday game from the northeast metro area. I-85 south outside the Perimeter has been increasing subject to southbound delays during the evening peak period. 30 miles of stop and go traffic getting there will complement baseball’s leisurely pace.

    We’re spending a nearly billion on Cobb HOT lanes, so it only makes sense we chip in another billion for transit from the city core to the new stadium.

  26. George Chidi says:

    Traffic counts on I-75 Northbound inside the perimeter between 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. are between 7,000 and 8,200 an hour on most days. They’re about 1000 fewer cars heading south at the same time, because the commuting suburbs are really to the north.

    Where the games will be now.

    I suppose some people who live in Cobb County will simply delay leaving work for an hour or so before heading to a game — they won’t add to traffic. But the fans who live in Gwinnett County and would normally take I-85 North will be shifting to I-75 after work. Let’s call that 15 percent of the fans. And the fans that live south and east of the stadium — call it another 15 percent of ticket sales, or about 6,000 people — will also have to get into a car and drive north on I-75, or perhaps on I-285, Let’s be generous and say the average car carries two people to the game.

    My thumbnail guess is that this adds about 6,000 cars heading on I-75 North and I-285 in the middle of rush hour. If half of that is on I-75 … that’s an increase in rush hour traffic count of about 50 percent on game days during the week with a 7:10 p.m. first pitch., never mind what it does to the outer loop.

    Perhaps my assumptions are wrong. Maybe people will learn to drive all the way home to their exurban villas before turning around to go back to the game. Perhaps assuming that 15 percent of Braves ticket buyers are Gwinnett residents who work ITP is an overstatement. But I doubt it. I may be understating things.

    I suspect the fan map is going to shift a bit. If it really is a pain in the ass to get to from in town, more people who both live and work outside the perimeter will buy tickets.

    But never mind that: what about all the other people who AREN’T going to a game stuck in maddening traffic on I-75 because of this? The 80 percent of the public in Cobb who never go to a game? The congestion I suspect will occur is an insane burden to impose on them, which will almost certainly come at an economic cost to the county. No one credible actually believes the county will see a positive ROI from spending $450 million on a stadium.

    Unless light rail is bundled into this plan, building a stadium at one of the most congested intersections in Georgia is a costly mistake. And using public money to support this private business, given the history of financial misfortune associated with public stadium projects, is an obscenity.

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