At first, I wasn’t sure if this should be part of the ‘Alternate Universe Padres‘ series, but after pinching myself once or twice, I can confirm to you that this is, in fact, reality.
Last week, the Padres announced that they’d be undertaking a significant reconstruction project at Petco Park this offseason in order to install a new video board – as Ron Fowler promised in February of 2013 – as well as various related seating adjustments.
I know the Padres and I know their (somewhat ambiguous) agreement with the city regarding ballpark expenses, joint business expenses, and the like. I thought that perhaps the San Diego taxpayer would be paying for at least part of the new scoreboard, so I asked for explicit confirmation from Padres president, Mike Dee.
That was about as unequivocal a response as possible, which meant one of two things to me: either the Padres definitely were paying for the entire project or Mike Dee is an incredibly bold liar. Remembering Tom Garfinkel, incredibly bold liar, I decided to follow-up with the city of San Diego.
So on Thursday of last week, I sent a Freedom of Information Act Request (FOIA) to the San Diego city clerk, requesting all documents related to:
“Joint Ballpark ownership expenses, incremental Ballpark expenses, or capital expenditures dated between January 1, 2014 and present that are based on clauses XXII E, F, and G of the Memorandum of Understanding between the San Diego Padres.”
Today, that request was fulfilled, and the San Diego city clerk dumped a handful of documents to me via email. I will slowly release these over the next few days, but here’s the major revelation regarding the scoreboard improvements in 2015:
The Padres paid for everything
Yep, Ron Fowler and co. will seriously pay for everything. From the document itself:
All of these improvements will be paid for by the Padres.
Here’s the document, in full:
The total cost of all ballpark improvements, which includes new metal detectors along with everything related to the scoreboard upgrade, will be $12,905,500.
A slow clap for ownership and Mike Dee may be in order, but I’ll save the true applause until the on-the-field product receives the same capital injection.