In a letter, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred questioned the "merits and feasibility" of the stadium proposal, as well as the "actual level of commitment" from the public.

By Kaelen Jones
December 11, 2018

Tampa Bay Rays owner Stuart Sternberg told reporters Tuesday that plans to build his club a new ballpark in the Ybor City neighborhood of Tampa have stalled.

The City of St. Petersburg had given the Rays a three-year period in which they could negotiate a deal to build a new stadium. Sternberg has conceded that a deal will not be finalized.

Per NBC Sports' Craig Calcaterra, the Rays will likely remain at Tropicana Field until 2027.

"While the momentum and progress are real, we are not close at all to workable framework," Sternberg said.

Earlier Monday, Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred ripped a proposal for the new ballpark in a letter sent to Hillsborough County officials.

Manfred said that he was "puzzled" by being publicly injected into the plans so late into the negotiating window. Additionally, Manfred said that the proposal lacked "specific details that would be necessary for me and my staff to begin to understand the merits and feasibility of the proposal and the actual level of commitment being offered" publicly.

Sternberg, who's been the Rays owner since 2005, said that he's been working to get the club a new stadium for over 10 years. He cited factors such as site control, political approvals, private-investor commitments and timing certainty prevented the proposal from being more than just a framework.

Sternberg said there are no plans to ask St. Petersburg officials for a new stadium proposal and the franchise needs to determine where it play in 2028. But, he added, "I'm firmly committed to helping the Rays remain and thrive in Tampa Bay for decades and generations to come."

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