Las Vegas 51’s Sold And May Move

Holly Madison Las Vegas 51's Baseball Game
Holly Madison

Baseball is my favorite sport. It’s the only organized sport I played growing up and the professional sport I attended most (Go Yankees!). Since I moved to Las Vegas I’ve wanted to get out to a Las Vegas 51’s game but have never made it. That will change this year since they’re now the New York Mets AAA affiliate and have some prospects I’d like to see play. After weeks of rumors the 51’s have officially been sold and may be moving down the street from me in the future.

The biggest new challenge for the new owners is to win public support for their proposal to move the 51s from 30-year-old Cashman Field near downtown Las Vegas to a new $65 million ballpark next to Red Rock Resort in Summerlin near Charleston Boulevard and the Las Vegas Beltway. The owners envision a ballpark called The Ballpark at Summerlin Centre with 8,000-9,000 seats on 16-20 acres to be donated by Howard Hughes Corp., which values the land donation at $40 million.

I think Cashman Field is a great location for the Las Vegas 51’s especially now that downtown Vegas is having such a large business and residential expansion. Unfortunately the stadium is an ancient 30 years old and something needs to be done. Few things in Las Vegas remain the same for that long. There, seemingly, hasn’t been anything done until now to provide a new stadium for the players or fans. It’s understandable since previous owners, who also own The D, had their focus elsewhere.

The 51’s aren’t much of a tourist attraction to Las Vegas but the team does provide an affordable alternative to seeing a show and a good excuse to go to downtown Vegas. Paid attendance was about 4,500 but fewer people actually went to the games. This won’t have a huge effect on business downtown but it will have an effect.

I’m 50/50 with the Las Vegas 51’s moving to my hood. I love baseball but don’t like the idea of giving families another excuse to clog things up in my corner of suburbia. The 51’s will probably move here and I’ll enjoy the games because I can.

photo: 1 blue jays way

Five NFL Stadiums That Could Use Casinos

Earlier this year I was fascinated when I found out that the New York Mets wanted to have a casino as part of Citi Field. That’s two things I love in one place – baseball and casinos. That got me to thinking what other pro stadiums could use a casino.

In February I called on baseball expert “Betting DorkGill Alexander to come up with 5 Major League Baseball stadiums that could use a casino and now I’m calling on Joe Fortenbaugh from National Football Post for the NFL version of that list. Thankfully he had a few minutes before the NFL draft to contribute his thoughts.

Like me, Joe likes to eat steak, gamble and drink but he also knows way more about football then anyone else I know. Joe covers Las Vegas and gambling for NFP and is a great read and follow on twitter (@JoeFortenbaugh). On to 5 NFL stadiums that could use a casino…

1. Raymond James Stadium (Tampa, FL)

Raymond James Stadium Tampa, FL

In 2006, I attended four games at Ray Jay during the Bucs’ forgettable 4-12 campaign and can honestly say that I’ve never had a better time in the face of consistent defeat. Under the sun-drenched Florida sky amidst the laid-back party atmosphere, Buccaneers games are more like a cocktail party than a sporting event. And when you really think about it, is there a better place for a casino in all of a professional football than the $3 million, 20,000 square foot pirate ship located in Raymond James’ north end zone? The damn thing screams “Treasure Island” and would be so much fun to play at that I wouldn’t bat an eye at the 6/5 blackjack payouts.

Photo: Wikimedia 

2. Cowboys Stadium (Arlington, TX)

Cowboys Stadium Arlington, TX

If NFL venues were Las Vegas Strip properties, then Jerry Jones’ $1.2 billion ode to extravagance would no doubt be the Lone Star State equivalent of the Wynn. From the $40 million jumbotron to the onsite Victoria’s Secret, Jones has made it perfectly clear that he wants Cowboys Stadium to be regarded as the gold standard for modern sports arenas. With 85,000 seats, Jones can afford to turn the six elevated platforms behind the end zones from standing room “Party Pass” sections into blackjack and dice games with an elevated view of the field. Just don’t expect to find any $5 tables. Tony Romo’s $108 million contract isn’t going to pay itself.

Photo: Wikimedia 

3. O.Co Coliseum (Oakland, CA)

O.Co Coliseum Oakland, CA

Calling the Coliseum a dump would be an insult to waste disposal facilities all across America. The Raiders haven’t posted a winning season since 2002 and have ranked dead last in attendance in three of the last four years. Between the fan bases’ lack of interest in showing up to witness yet another loss and the state of California’s never ending budget crisis, building an onsite casino makes too much sense for an inept state legislature more concerned with taxing their citizens into an early grave. Just go ahead and convert the entire upper deck into a pleasure pit of gambling decadence. It’s not like anybody is using those seats to watch the Raiders play football.


4. Mercedes-Benz Superdome (New Orleans, LA)

Mercedes-Benz Superdome New Orleans, LA

There was absolutely no shot in hell that we were going to do an article on stadium-casinos and leave the most morally compromising, utterly decedent and insanely delicious city in the league off the list. The Big Easy: Where willpower takes a backseat and the right foot never lets off the gas. Where alcoholic beverages are served by the gallon, Johnny Law turns a blind eye and the human spirit is free to push the limits of debauchery. It’s this type of atmosphere that has aided the Saints in their production of an impressive 29-11 (.725) home record since 2008. The only problem with a Superdome casino is that you’d probably be forced to cut-off drink service for close to 73% of the gambling population.

Photo: Blog.NewOrleansSaints 

5. Qualcomm Stadium (San Diego, CA)

Qualcomm Stadium San Diego, CA

Try as you might, you’ll never be able to convince me that there’s a better tailgate in all of professional football than the one that takes place at Qualcomm on Sundays during the fall. The weather is so immaculate and the atmosphere so lively that as a Chargers season ticket holder in 2005, I was a lock to enter the stadium 30 minutes after kickoff because I didn’t want the party in the parking lot to end. The best way to rectify that problem would be to build a casino in the upper deck, where fans can gamble away the afternoon in 76-degree weather while watching the Powder Blues go about their business. The Chargers would have a natural gaming partner in Viejas Casino, which is located just 29 miles from Qualcomm.

Photo: Butterfunk 

Hit me up on Twitter: @JoeFortenbaugh

Jets Cover Photo: Flickr

5 Major League Baseball Stadiums That Could Use A Casino

I’m always excited when I have contributors to the site. It’s something I don’t do often enough but that will change in the future. This week Gill Alexander, AKA Betting Dork, offers a little fun to the site.

A couple weeks ago I mentioned that the initial proposal for the New York Mets Citi Field came with a casino attached to it. That proposal was shot down by New York City before it even reached Major League Baseball for approval. Gill looks at a few Major League Baseball stadiums that could use the addition of addition a casino.

Even though some of his takes seem tongue and cheek a lot of what he has to say rings true. You can download the awesome Betting Dork Podcast (If you follow me on twitter you know how much I enjoy this podcast) or visit Dr. Bob Sports to learn more about Gill and follow his baseball picks.

Miller Park – Milwaukee Brewers 

Milwaukee Brewers Miller Park

According to court papers in the NCAA v Christie New Jersey sports betting case, Bud Selig’s shocked, appalled, and in disbelief that people bet on baseball? Well now that daughter Wendy’s not around to snitch, he’d never, ever believe the video poker machines on the back of every seat at his old team’s ballpark.

Photo: MNArtists

Play Ball! Not Slot Machines.

New York Mets Citi Field
Citi Field

Pitchers and catchers report to MLB spring training today! Baseball fans, like me, love this day. Not only does it signify that nice weather is around the corner but so is baseball season.

One of the newest baseball stadiums, Citi Field home to the New York Mets, was originally proposed to house a casino. Alas, that fell through.

The owners of the New York Mets reportedly wanted to take a gamble on owning a casino next to Citi Field, the home of their major league club.

Sterling Equities, the real estate company operated by Mets owner Fred Wilpon and family, pitched a casino adjacent to the major league stadium in September 2011 and offered the City of New York $100 million to acquire 62 acres for the site, the New York Post reported Tuesday.

It’s a shame that building a casino to go along with Citi Field fell through. It wouldn’t have been a full casino since casinos in New York City aren’t allowed to have table games yet.

This casino would just have slot machines and video poker but it would have combined two of my favorite things in the world baseball and casinos. It would give this Yankees fan an excuse to check out a new baseball stadium even if it meant sitting through the Muts.

There’s more on the potential of a Queens casino at the New York Post.