On Which Way L.A. the other night, L.A. Councilwoman Janice Hahn suggested that the Dodgers should join the city's protest of Arizona's strict new immigration law:
"I'm going to be asking the L.A. Dodgers to consider moving their training facility from Arizona," Hahn said.
It was only a year ago that the Dodgers moved from Vero Beach, Fla., to Camelback Ranch, a $100 million spring facility in Glendale, Ariz. The City of Glendale will be paying off bonds on the ballpark until 2038.
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Dodger spokesman Josh Rawitch declined to comment on Hahn's suggestion, referring questions to Major League Baseball. The MLB has also declined to comment, though the MLB Players Union came out against the immigration law today.
Baseball has become a focus of protest against Arizona. Pickets formed at Wrigley Field in Chicago and Coors Field in Denver when the Diamondbacks played there this week, and there have been calls to relocate the 2011 All-Star Game, currently scheduled for Phoenix. The Dodgers are scheduled to play in Phoenix on May 10-12.
If Hahn's spring training proposal sounds a little nutty, consider that the Dodgers did join a boycott in Arizona earlier this year. Team executives boycotted the Cactus League kickoff breakfast. They were protesting a planned ticket surcharge to pay for a new facility for the Cubs. Si, se puede!.
Consider, too, that the Dodgers moved spring training to Cuba in 1947 because there was too much racial hostility toward Jackie Robinson in Florida.