Colby Cosh doubts it’s going to happen, at least in time for the next season because of the lawsuits going on behind the scenes.

But I’ve got to say this; Rochester’s IL Rochester RedWings have a far larger audience in the stands than the Expos do. So do the Toledo Mud Hens.Matter of fact the Muck Dogs of Batavia, NY do a better job at drawing a crowd a lot of nights, and they’re a Double-A club, in a town that’s around one tenth the size of Montreal, for pity’s sake. The other night, Montreal drew a paltry 5600 fans. Lowly Rochester pulls that much on a middling night!

So, what’s going on here?  Well, several things, all at once.
Baseball was never that large a draw up there anyway… and remember, I’m within ear shot of most of Montreal’s many radio stations. Even assuming the Montreal market was big on baseball… and they’re not… the average income up there simply won’t support a team with payrolls as large as the average Major leauge baseball team. Tickets are just out of reach for the average person there.

There are cultural reasons for a lack of a baseball fandom there, as well. The French Canadian community there is among the most socialistic in Canada… (read: Anti-American) and sees Baseball as a uniquely American sport…. though, interestingly, they don’t seem to have much of a problem supporting the CFL football team, which plays what many consider to be another uniquely American game. The politics of the situation made an already tough promotion job nigh on impossible.

The Expos, as such have been losing millions a year, for years now, and are part of the reason the ticket costs in the remaining markets are so high… all the other owners have been towing them along. The economics, in short, are not there.

Moving ’em to Washington is overdue. What will interest me is how the IL expansion team that will move in there, fares.  It’s not like the IL’s Ottawa Senators, over at Jetform Park have been making money.. and they have a larger fan base and a far smaller payroll.

Meanwhile, the last Expos game as such is tonight. I don’t bother linking their website because the bandwidth has been exceeded at their server… and it’s offline.

Yes, it’s sad to see the Expos go. But the fact is, there are more fans to mourn their demise stateside, than there are in their own hometown.