The drama involving the Red Sox Triple-A affiliate has been hanging over the organization for what seems like forever, but it has come to an end. After plenty of rumors in recent days, the Pawtucket Red Sox ownership group officially announced on Friday that the team will be moving from its longtime Rhode Island home. In 2021, the PawSox will be moving north to Worcester.
Here is the official announcement of @PawSox moving to the city of Worcester - anticipated completion date of March 2021 which will include a new ballpark, two hotels and restaurants in Kelly Square area. #WBZ @WBZ @RedSox pic.twitter.com/ZdIlr0TUse— Dan Roche (@RochieWBZ) August 17, 2018
According to the announcement above, the new stadium will be in the Canal District in Worcester and includes more beyond the stadium. The team will apparently be part of a larger reinvention of the area. Further, according to this report from WBUR, the Pawtucket ownership group led by Larry Lucchino will be paying $45 million towards the project with taxpayers contributing $38 million. I should also note that Minor League Baseball has attempted to trademark the term “WooSox” and I’m not sure how I feel about that.
As for the city of Pawtucket, well, it’s hard not to feel from them right now. They have been home to the PawSox since 1973 and the team has been an institution to the area. Now, I’m pretty much always on the side that taxpayers should not be carrying the burden for sports facilities, and I stand by that. Rhode Island held firm in their stance on the issue, and they lost the team as a result. Whatever you think about that thought process, however, there is a tangible loss here. People lost a part of their community and local businesses lost a stream of revenue. It’s tough. As for Worcester, well, they’ll be enjoying all of that, and those of you in Central Mass should be excited for that aspect of it, at least.