There is something that needs to be understood. Among all sports, baseball is the one that is all about love that starts between father and son playing catch in the backyard at home or with the thrill of driving to the little leagues in the city.

This should be the first statement coming from the heart of a baseball fan when we are dealing with the latest buzz about the fresh deal between the City of West Palm Beach and the Palm Beach County over the land two MLB baseball teams have been coveting for. From an economic stance, allowing that a major league baseball team heads back to West Palm Beach is a good thing. Our city has seen a steady growth lately and it deserves that during the months when Florida starts dotting itself with baseball teams from all over the country, we also get a piece of the pie in the tradition that brings baseball fans closer to the game.

Friday afternoon, West Palm Beach Mayor Jeri Muoio and Palm Beach County Mayor Shelley Vana signed the commitment that makes Major League Spring Training in West Palm Beach become a reality for the Houston Astros and Washington Nationals.

After the brief ceremony, a vivid demonstration of the baseball talent in our area was the spotlight; with several little athletes shining like rock starts.

Later in the evening, Governor Rick Scott spoke during the Governor’s baseball dinner that took place in downtown West Palm Beach where among another personalities and local dignitaries, we had the pleasure to have MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred. “I want to make sure every team that’s in Arizona is eventually back here where they belong, where spring training belongs, in the great state of Florida,’’ Governor Rick Scott said to the crowd gathered inside a large tent next to the pavilion at the Great Lawn.

Making the deal to have the Houston Astros and Washington Nationals teams come to play in West Palm Beach has been a long and bitter battle between the city and Palm Beach county but its leaders have intrepidly been able to agree on the baseball project to become a reality by 2017.

Would it be beneficial to our city of West Palm Beach? Without holding back, yes. As the mayor once dubbed it to West Palm Beach Magazine: “… a city on the move“, allowing these two MLB clubs to practice during spring in the city is moving business up towards impacting positively sports in the community. The Grapefruit League in Florida contributes $753 million in annual sales to the state, including $385 million from out-of-state visitors. Though people who visit Florida during spring training would eventually visit the state anyway to enjoy its warm weather regardless of baseball, a stadium here would put West Palm Beach in the spectrum to welcome visitors to delight on all the attractions and warm hospitality we are known for. It will also expand the possibilities for the Minor Leagues, a hierarchy of professional baseball leagues (MLB), to groom local talents in our field.

Major League Baseball Spring Training continues to be a fan favorite. For fans, it’s an opportunity to see the game’s biggest stars up close. The Washington Nationals had a pretty good season last year. Hopefully 2017 would enhance the preparation these two teams need to achieve the ultimate goal: “The World Championship”.

Major League Spring Training in West Palm Beach is now a Reality. Mayor Jeri Muoio and Palm Beach County Mayor Shelley Vana Agreed to the Deal.