Despite multiple attempts throughout history, Portland, Oregon, never has been able to land a Major League Baseball franchise.
That soon could change, however, and Russell Wilson might play a key role.
The Seattle Seahawks quarterback and his wife, Ciara, recently partnered with the Portland Diamond Project, a group trying to bring an MLB team to the Beaver State, according to ESPN’s Darren Rovell. The group formally was announced last month, and is led by former Nike vice president Craig Cheek.
If the the Portland Diamond Project, which plans to buy land and build a new ballpark, is successful in landing an expansion franchise, those involved would be favorites to become owners, per Rovell. Although, matters could be complicated if a current team with an existing owner relocates to Portland.
This isn’t the first time Wilson has shown interest in sports other than football.
The 29-year-old has played in spring training for the Texas Rangers and, most recently, the New York Yankees. He also is a partner in a group vying to bring the NBA back to Seattle.
Portland has come close to receiving an MLB team in the past. The city was a potential landing spot for the relocating Montreal Expos in 2003, and the Florida Marlins considered relocating to Portland in 2007.
So, does Portland actually have a shot this time?
It’s tough to know for sure. However, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred has said the league is looking to expand, and the potential destinations he’s mentioned suggest MLB is willing to think outside the box.
One can’t help but wonder, though, if there’s enough room in the Pacific Northwest for both the Seattle Mariners and, say, the Portland Loggers.