Field of Dreams: Will Major League Baseball come to Charlotte?

- Will Charlotte score a Major League Baseball team? It could be years in the making, but the Major League Baseball Commissioner has listed Charlotte as one of the cities where the league might consider expanding.

“I think that Major League Baseball does have a place here. Major League Baseball does have a place in Charlotte,” David Luciano, a Charlotte Knights’ fan, said.

But where would a major league stadium be built? Construction on the $54 million BB&T Stadium, home of the Knights, just started about five years ago. The Knights are in their fourth year in Uptown at BB&T Ballpark.

“This ballpark cannot be renovated,” Chris Kroeger, a radio host at WFNZ, said.

BB&T won’t cut it for the majors according to Kroeger. He says it’s just not big enough.

“As it stands today, say Major League Baseball says we’re coming in a decade, figure out what you want to do with your ballpark, you either have to find new land in uptown or maybe outside of the outer belt, the 277 loop or find a way to re-use BB&T Ballpark, but you can’t just add stands in there, that’s not going to happen,” Kroeger said.

So what happens to the Knights?

“The Knights could be a part of it, they could be a team where that ownership group, don beaver and those guys still kind of stay attached, but if not they’re probably going to have to be bought out, they’re going to have to relocate to another city, it would be a much larger ownership group that would have to jump in and be a part of this,” Kroeger said.

Winston Gilley, a Knights’ fan, doesn’t like the idea of the Knights leaving town.

“I also like the small town atmosphere of having a minor league stadium, so if we could make both happen, I think that’s a win, as long as the energy from a minor league stadium doesn’t go away.”

The Charlotte Knights released the following statement:

It’s always a compliment when Charlotte is noticed as a potential Major League Baseball city, however we still contend, as does the Major League Baseball Commissioner, Rob Manfred, that this is years away. We are thrilled that our team has led the country in Minor League Baseball attendance for three straight years, and intend on continuing that tradition for many years to come.
 

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