Examining Nashville As A Possible City For MLB Expansion

Image credit: General atmosphere at the St. Jude Rock 'n' Roll Marathon and ½ Marathon and the 2019 NFL Draft Experience on April 27, 2019 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Danielle Del Valle/Getty Images)

This is part of a larger feature on possible MLB expansion. To see the full series, click here.

Like Charlotte, Nashville provides some interesting growth and location bonuses. Situated between Braves country and clubs in Ohio, Nashville is an interesting pocket to fill.

Population (CSA): 2,027,489 (rank: 31)

DMA: 1,026,260 (rank: 27)

Major Pro Teams: Titans (NFL), Predators (NHL), Nashville SC (MLS)

Clubs That Claim Broadcast Market: Braves, Reds, Cardinals, possibly Indians

Four Businesses of Interest: FedEx, HCA, Dollar General, Community Health Systems

Organized effort: John Loar

Pluses: Nashville has grown nearly 14 percent between the 2010 census and 2017 projection. The Predators hosted the NHL All-Star Game and playoff hockey in 2017. The city hosted the NFL draft this year. Those factors suggest there’s potential for baseball to work. Let’s face it, Nashville is a hot market.

Minuses: The market is small, and beginning in 2020 will see three major sports franchises when the soccer team begins play. That will make sponsors very hard to come by. Garnering additional public funding is going to be problematic given the $275 million approved for the MLS stadium construction.

Open Questions: San Francisco Bay Area businessman John Loar has kept the conversation of MLB to Nashville beyond just a concept, but there hasn’t been a plan as to how to fund the ballpark or what the location might be.

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