I know I said I'd hold off on commenting about this until the season was over - and I still plan on waiting 'til the end of the season to reflect and discuss this whole experience - but I think it's important to quickly comment on some of the efforts to 'save' baseball in Lynn that have been bandied about in the comments.
As far as saving the Spirit, the die is cast on that one - there is no chance that they come back next year. Business is business. But that doesn't mean we give up going forward.
As I said last night, "This park is too nice to just be used by high school teams."
After Elmira lost its CanAm League team, they got a team in the NECBL. Now, it ain't the pros, but it's something. I'll get contact info for that league if anyone would like me to do so.
If we support that team, and get enough people to voice their desire to see pro baseball back in '09, '10 and beyond, then maybe there's a chance.
It seems like it would be foolish for an owner to try Lynn again after all these failed attempts - especially this one - but when you think about it, you kind of have to be foolish anyway to start an independent baseball team. They almost always fold or move, and rarely make money.
Take a look at some of the places teams have gone to in recent years: Sussex and New Haven had just lost affiliated teams the year before, and owners still came in and started teams. Allentown was a miserable flop, but a new AAA team is moving there next year. So you never know.
However, as we saw in the past 5 years, the stupid city of Lynn (I'm not insulting you Lynners out there, I'm insulting your government) is terribly unsupportive of the team and all the benefits it brings to the city, so it's doubtful that they would do much to help the cause since it's doubtful we'll ever find another owner who puts as much effort in as Mr. Lopardo.
Whatever --- we'll see what the city has to say when the youth of Lynn offer the familiar refrain of 'there's nothing to do here.'
Other towns further up the North Shore have a better chance of supporting successful teams because more people are apt to go to a Salem, Beverly or Swampscott than Lynn on an average night. But those towns also tend to have a lot of fancy pants NIMBY types, who would rather see another shopping mall built than a baseball stadium.
Thus, the future seems kind of bleak, but again, you never know. This is too good of a baseball market - and Fraser too nice of a field - not to at least see something come back here in the near future.
In the meanwhile, we need to make sure to keep this community together. Stay on the blog and talk baseball with us. Next season, we'll make some unified outings to Nashua, Worcester and Brockton games in all of our Spirit apparel --- it probably won't help our cause, but it can't hurt, and it would be a lot of fun.
Until then, let's hope the boys go out champions. GO SPIRIT