Return to Index Mission Statement Stadium Situation Articles about the Twins' quest for a new park Why the Twins need a new park Concerns about a new Twins park Thoughts about the Twins and the stadium issue Save the Twins poll Twins links Contact Webmaster Save the Minnesota Twins is dedicated to keeping baseball 
in Minnesota by helping the Twins build a new stadium.
home > articles > article

Plan has Twins moving to St. Paul
$325 million sale is contingent upon approval of new stadium

ST. PAUL, Aug. 3 — The Pohlad family would relinquish control of the Minnesota Twins and the team would move to St. Paul under a new plan to build an open-air ballpark.

A MINNESOTA-BASED OWNERSHIP group would buy 100 percent of the team by Oct. 1, under a deal reached between the Twins and city officials late Monday. Mayor Norm Coleman announced the agreement, which also hinges on state approval of public financing for part of a $325 million outdoor stadium. “We’ve got a whole new ballgame in St. Paul,” Coleman said. Major League Baseball reportedly has agreed to this deal, and the league has approved a move from the Metrodome in Minneapolis if St. Paul can build a new stadium. Plenty of hurdles remain. St. Paul residents must approve a measure in the Nov. 2 election to double the city’s half-cent sales tax. State lawmakers, who have rejected previous stadium finance plans, will play a key role as well.

“The whole exercise is such a waste of time as to almost boggle the mind,” said DFL Rep. Matt Entenza, who gives the plan little chance in the Legislature. Under the agreement, St. Paul and the Twins would each contribute $8.5 million a year to build the stadium along the Mississippi River, Coleman said. The state would be asked to pay about one-third of the total cost of the project. If taxes collected on players’ salaries don’t equal the state’s share, the Twins have guaranteed the difference, Coleman said. “The net effect of this provision is that the team is committed to paying about one-third of the costs of construction, but is virtually guaranteeing two-thirds of the costs of construction,” Coleman said. The player payroll tax would be similar to that now existing in Pittsburgh. A full section on baseball

The Twins also have agreed to pay any cost overruns for the construction of the ballpark. The Twins also would pay for operating costs of the team and cover maintenance of the facility. “Finally, I firmly believe that in addition to Twins ballplayers, major market teams and players like Chuck Knoblauch and the New York Yankees should help build a new ballpark for Minnesota,” Coleman said. “We have agreed that a player’s tax incorporating these principles will be imposed.” Coleman thanked Twins owner Carl Pohlad and his family for the deal. “Today because of their agreement to sell 100 percent in the Minnesota Twins, they have given us the opportunity to save baseball in Minnesota for the new millennium,” he said. A statement from the Twins said the Pohlad family has agreed to a letter of intent with the city of St. Paul authorizing Coleman to seek buyers. The Twins’ statement also said one condition is that the team must remain in Minnesota for the next 30 years. The Twins and the city anticipate the completion of construction of a 38,000- to 40,000-seat ballpark in the spring of 2003.