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If you build it (with public funds), they will come – or leave…

​Spring training started last week as 15 teams took the field across Florida. Pre-season baseball has an estimated economic impact of roughly $1 billion and is responsible for over 9,500 jobs and $67.7 million in tax revenues throughout Florida. Historically these benefits have been consistently distributed across the state, but this year presents a different scenario.

The Orlando/Space Coast area, which was home to five team’s in 2008 started this spring training with only one remaining team – the Atlanta Braves. However, they are in the final negotiations to move to Sarasota – this follows the departure of the Astros and Nationals to West Palm Beach this year. Many of these relocates were a result of other markets luring teams with the promise of public funds for stadiums, which can negate the realized overall economic impact to the region.​

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