PORTLAND, Ore. — During a radio appearance Monday, Portland Diamond Project managing director Mike Barrett said if all goes well, the acquisition of a property for a new baseball stadium could be announced in four to six weeks.
"I think, optimistically, within a month we could announce the acquisition of property," he said during an appearance on "The Dwight and Aaron Show" on 620 AM.
Barrett said PDP is progressing in its bid to purchase a site for the stadium and has narrowed it down to two properties they're really excited about. He added that the door hasn't been shut on any of the properties they're considering, some of which have been made public, some which haven't.
"We are really kind of buckling down on a couple. I don't want to limit it to two, but we're really grinding on a couple right now that we're really excited about," he said.
Once the site is acquired, the next steps in the process would be ballpark construction and the acquisition of a major league baseball team. Barrett said it's his belief that with the way things are progressing, once the land acquisition happens, construction and team acquisition will be able to happen simultaneously.
"We're running down the track of land acquisition. We feel like things are lining up well enough ... [that] the timing is going to lay out perfectly," he said. "If that works out to where both those lines cross at the same time, which we think they will, we'll be in a tremendous position."
The two avenues for bringing a team to Portland remain expansion and relocation. Barrett pointed out that MLB commissioner Rob Manfred brought up expansion again recently, saying that he'd like to expand once Tampa Bay and Oakland settle their stadium issues. Barrett said they'd be fine with that path, but if either of those teams can't resolve their issues, PDP is working to assure that MLB looks first to Portland for possible relocation sites.
"If we can help provide a solution for [Oakland or Tampa Bay], great," he said. "If they can get settled quickly, then great. We'll grab an expansion team, hopefully."
Barrett also said PDP has taken some calls from MLB teams, including a team or two that has reached out unexpectedly. He said he doesn't know if those teams are interested in Portland as a relocation destination, or if they're using Portland as leverage against MLB or its own city.
Either way, Portland is working to be ready to accept an MLB team as soon as it becomes available, whether through relocation or expansion.
"We want to provide not just a spot for expansion, but options for the commissioner and for baseball, should we be necessary to help solve one of those issues," he said. "We just want to be there for whichever option is the best."
LISTEN: Mike Barrett Interview