ST. PAUL (AP) -- Immediately after baseball owners voted to eliminate two franchises, the Minnesota Twins' landlord obtained a restraining order blocking any changes in the team's situation until Thursday.
The Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission filed a lawsuit in Hennepin County District Court on Tuesday to compel the Twins to honor their lease to play in the Metrodome next season. District Judge Diana Eagon then issued a restraining order. The lawsuit named the Twins and major league baseball as defendants.
Attorney General Mike Hatch said his office is exploring the state's legal options and he planned to discuss them Wednesday.
But sentiment against a publicly financed stadium for the Twins appeared unchanged Tuesday despite the vote.
"The only thing they seem to care about is the money. It's like, the heck with the sport. They are not even trying to put up a pretense of loving baseball." -- State Sen. John Marty
Baseball commissioner Bud Selig said the two teams hadn't been determined, and he wouldn't say when the decision would be made.
"The only thing they seem to care about is the money," State Sen. John Marty said. "It' like, the heck with the sport. They are not even trying to put up a pretense of loving baseball."
House Majority Leader Tim Pawlenty didn't think a renewed threat of the Twins' demise will change the Legislature's unwillingness to pour significant tax dollars into a stadium effort.
"I think legislators have factored in the threat of contraction into their thinking," he said. "I don't think that the threat of contraction at our doorstep is going to fundamentally change the dynamics."
Gov. Jesse Ventura, a longtime opponent of publicly funded stadiums, wasn't budging either. Spokesman John Wodele said Ventura considered the baseball vote an attempt to extort a stadium.
"The governor has no intention for calling a special session," Wodele said. "There is very little appetite on behalf of the people or the Legislature for that matter to provide a subsidy to build a stadium."
In an interview on Minnesota Public Radio hours before Selig's announcement, Ventura told critical callers not to blame him if the Twins were eliminated.
Ventura also repeated his stance that the state has no standing over the fate of the Twins, a private enterprise. Ventura said he would encourage Congress to respond by eliminating baseball's antitrust status.
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