The Fat Cats could be in trouble
It seems like there is a possibility that the Ottawa Fat Cats will not be playing out of Ottawa Stadium next season.
As many of you may or may not know, the Fat Cats lease on the Stadium is up next month. With the new AA team moving in and the Stadium needing more than $10 million dollars in renovations, the city staff are recommending that the city does not renew their lease with the Fat Cats for 2012, so that the renovations can start immediately.
Don’t get me wrong, I am a full supporter of the renovation in general and other fans should be as well, but I think that they can definitely work around the summer. Why can’t the renos start after the season?
It doesn’t seem like the Fat Cats are too phased about the issue. Team president Brian Carolan says that the city told OSG that the Fat Cats could have the stadium to themselves (besides the fun fair… *gag*) for 2012, and that the city would make a renovation schedule to work around the FC home dates. Since this is what they were told, that’s how OSG is approaching the ordeal and that’s probably the best way that they could handle the situation.
However, this is where it gets interesting. Staff claims that no decision has been made on the Fat Cats and that if the recently released FC schedule gets in the way of the city’s renovation schedule, then it’s bye-bye Ottawa Fat Cats.
Someone here is lying, and I think it’s the city.
Certain councillors want pro baseball really badly, and construction on the stadium has to start almost immediately if the AA team is to be secured.
The city says that they do want the Fat Cats to keep on trucking, and I believe them, but the problem is that they want pro-ball more. To be honest, I can’t really blame them, but the whole situation is very unfair for the Fat Cats. If they do end up getting kicked out of the stadium, then the city is basically saying: “Alright! Thanks for making baseball interesting here again.. now GTFO.” As the media says, the Fat Cats are a victim of their own success.
No one really knows what will happen, but if we do end up getting kicked out of the stadium, the Fat Cats should not fold. As there are other ball fields (for example, Heritage Park) that the FC’s could easily move into for one little season while things at Ottawa Stadium are taken care of.
Ottawa should come to a conclusion on this fairly soon, so stay tuned. Jon Willing and Neco Cockburn are the city hall reporters for the Ottawa Citizen and Ottawa Sun respectively, and a little follow to them on Twitter should keep you in the loop.