Marion County Commission: Delay the referendum, prepare the Octagon for battle

On Tuesday, Marion County commissioners were to decide how voters would participate in a referendum to determine if a three-year, half-cent sales tax would be levied for the construction of a new 4,500-seat stadium for the Yankees single-A club, which currently plays its games in Tampa.  Would the ballot simply be mailed to all registered voters or would there be a traditional ballot, consisting of (a) mail-in votes, (b) early voting at the polls, and (c) standard day-of participation?  For reasons probably known only to the power-wielding elite of the local Ocala Moose Lodge and their Trilateral Commission Overlords, there was disagreement among the Commission as to which method would most benefit the glorious Peoples of Marion County.  However, on the matter of delay, there was unanimous agreement.  The commissioners decided to postpone the decision until January 7th, when the matter will be settled, once and for all, in a greased octagon lit by a single torch and bathed in the fervent exhortations of Ocala’s citizenry.

octagon

Ocala.com has the details.

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Marion County commissioners to decide voting method for proposed Ocala stadium tax hike

Proposed Yankee Stadium in Ocala would seat 4,500.

Proposed Yankee Stadium in Ocala would seat 4,500.

Proposed Yankee Stadium for Marion County

Proposed Yankee Stadium for Marion County.

To state that the BBB is not in the business of reporting news is to suggest that it is in the business of anything at all, which is clearly not the case.  However, the purpose of this post is to inform you of important facts.  So, by way of the links below, we’ll leave the reporting to the professionals.  If you’d like, you can click the links right away, like some kind of bubbleheaded nincompoop, or you can indulge us with the following nutshell so as to familiarize yourself with the subject at hand.

On Tuesday, Marion County commissioners will decide the method by which residents will vote for or against a tax increase.  The proposed three-year, half-cent sales tax hike is intended to pay for a new stadium in Ocala for the Yankees’ single-A minor league club, currently headquartered at George Steinbrenner Field in Tampa.  Tomorrow’s vote is simply to decide whether the vote will be exclusively by mail, or if the vote will be of the traditional variety.  A traditional voting method is expected to generate less voter participation than an all mail-in vote.  If the project is successful, the Tampa Yankees will begin playing in the new stadium in April 2016.  There are no plans to move the Major League Yankees’ spring training away from Steinbrenner Field.

Ocala StarBanner

Ocala StarBanner

WFTV

WFTV

In the coming months, there will no doubt be many a business leader and local politician uttering the dubious phrase, “This new stadium will put Ocala on the map.”

 

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Sunshine State Rain-outs


According to statistics gathered by the BBB’s meteorological and statistical departments, 10.9% of Florida State League contests since the beginning of the 2012 season have been postponed or canceled due to rain.  In a joint effort by the cloud crowd and the number lumpers, the BBB gathered, filtered, and sensually massaged game schedule data from each of the FSL’s team websites (example).  The tables below show a wide variation among the teams, with the Clearwater Threshers experiencing only four rain-outs at home from opening day 2012 through August 1st, 2013, but the Lakeland Tigers suffering thirty-six during the same time period.


2012

2013

The word “meeting”, as used above, represents either a normal uninterrupted game; or a game started but suspended until another day due to rain; or the resumption of a game suspended by rain on a previous day; or games postponed or canceled due to rain.  The total number of meetings represented in the charts above is 1633.  The total number of rain-outs is 178.  That’s a league-wide rain-out percentage of 10.9.


Postponements and cancellations due to “inclement weather” or “wet grounds” were counted as rain also.


Most of us view rain-outs as merely an infrequent annoyance, but at a rate of nearly 11%, their impact is probably much greater than we think.  Does Lakeland have a hidden advantage over its FSL competition because of its high rain-out rate?  Do their relief pitchers get extra rest days that relievers of other teams do not enjoy?  Or do they suffer a disadvantage because postponed games are frequently made up with double-headers, which force their position players to play twice in the same day?  Does this increase potential for injury?  Speaking of double-header games, they’re usually truncated to seven innings each, which reduces a player’s overall time spent playing ball.  Do scouts suffer from this reduced exposure to the players they’re watching, and are their player evaluations adversely affected by long double-header days spent watching fourteen innings in hot, humid weather?


If you’re the general manager of a major league club, do you consider the frequency of rain-outs and its effect on pitcher rotations?  Do you really want your top prospect getting all warmed-up, just to have his start rained-out?  For a team like Lakeland, with close to a quarter of its home meetings rained out, that’s a real concern, especially for the younger pitchers of high-A baseball who may not have learned yet how their bodies will react to such adverse start-and-stop physical demands.


We at the BBB find this topic very interesting, and may attempt to answer a question or two listed above in future posts.  Stay tuned.

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Inflatamaniacs

 teacher_frustrated_student_1


Attention reader:  Please power on your home all-in-one printer/copier/scanner.  Use the all-in-one printer/copier/scanner software to ensure your device’s color ink cartridge levels are sufficient.  With your feet shoulder width apart, bend at the knees and print this internet post containing the Inflatamaniacs character biographies shown below. Using a no. 2 pencil and your wooden ruler, connect the Inflatamaniacs character on the left to the matching character biography on the right.  When you are finished, turn your paper facedown and remain seated until the proctor collects the exams.  If you matched the characters correctly, report to the principal’s office immediately because you are subtly racist.

Connections


The official BBB videographer, who we shouldn’t give up on just yet, captured the following Inflatamaniacs as they thrilled and delighted the crowd during the 2012 Florida State League All-Star Game at Charlotte Sports Park in Port Charlotte.

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