By announcing they intended to abandon Pawtucket, R.I., the new owners of the Red Sox’ Class AAA team reminded fans that beyond baseball’s innate poetry, it is a cold business.
This NY Times article is a great exploration of the economic geography of baseball and the place-based traditions that are rooted in having a team to call your own. There is a lot of anger in Pawtucket at the news that the team is planning to leave McCoy stadium. This isn’t just a devastating financial blow to the Pawtucket community; for decades, Pawtucket could hang there hat on being home to the PawSox and that communal identity was one of the defining distinctions between Pawtucket and Central Falls. Now it’s just another struggling town. How will this impact Pawtucket and Providence neighborhoods? What if the Red Sox affiliate left the state of Rhode Island entirely for, say Fall River or New Bedford? How would that impact the Ocean State?