Bud Selig is doing everything to move the Expos to the national capital. He thinks the best cities are Washington DC and Norhern Va.; that means instant death for the new team since Baltimore is only 40 miles away. Obviously most people will prefer to go to the beautiful Oriole Park at Camden Yards than RFK Stadium.
The attendance in Montreal increased 70% these last 2 seasons when the Expos finished with positive record. I spend 10 months here since August 2003 until June 2004. In late august this team was in the Wild Card Race and I was glad to see good attendance levels, between 20000 and 30000 fans. Unfortunately they fell short because they only played 6 games in Montreal in september.
What happens next season? MLB instead of supporting the idea of keeping this team in Montreal made a heartless schedule with periods of more than 1 month outside their home, despite the players told they wanted to play all their 81 home games in just one place. All that you can expect is a team having the worst record...and nobody prefers to see a last place team.
Let's analyze the situation:
1) All the other 29 teams control the Expos money, since they own the team and play against it at the same time that automatically kill the Expos and they never keep their stars because they never have money.
2) Last season MLB didn't give money to the Expos to make contracts when they were in the WildCard race.
3) The WORST of this. The interleague series Jays-Expos was played in Puerto Rico, including the Canada Day 1st july. Do you think it was casually? That's an insult to canadians.
If you think the playoffs won't bring more fans, jut look at the Marlins. They averaged about 15000 fans per game last season (only 6 years after being champions) and now they are among the best.
I never was an Expos fan but it's good for the sport to have a team outside the U.S. The Expos have 36 years of tradition (they are not the D'Rays for example), once they had the best attendances in the league.
No city will be able to support the team, most teams have financial problems. Keep in mind that the remaining of the Washington are called now Minnesota Twins and Texas Rangers.
It will be more pathetic when Montreal have a AAA team...with better attendance levels than the Expos now.
I hope Bud Selig is happy when the Expos are moved. All this happens with an "independent" comish. This corrupt dictator have to go soon. All I just want to say him is "thanks for ruinning the sport".