In a Q and A piece with the Los Angeles Times, the Commissioner of MLB, Bud Selig, was asked if he thinks contraction is on the table with the Oakland A’s and the Tampa Bay Rays if the two teams could not secure new stadiums:
No, I wouldn’t. I think we have moved past that.
We’re going into 16 years of labor peace. I regard that as maybe the prime reason for the growth of the sport.
I love the new ballparks. I love revenue sharing. I love interleague play and the wild card. But I don’t think we understood how those labor confrontations were damaging us, whether it was 1972, 1973, 1976, 1980, 1981, 1985, 1990 or 1994.
There is no question that both of those teams need new ballparks. We’ll just have to work our way through it. Tampa has done a marvelous job running their team. [General Manager] Billy Beane has done a terrific job in Oakland. With the economics of baseball today, you’ve got to have a new stadium.
Rays Index, where the Q and A piece was originally found, explains on their post why contraction is foolhardy for the larger business of Major League Baseball.