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Miami, Minneapolis: Tale of two cities

Maybe it confers too much credit to say Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton has second sight. But certainly what happened yesterday in Miami justifies his hard line against Vikings owners Mark and Zygi Wilf's plans to defray their share of the Vikes' new stadium by running the old personal seat license (PSL) scam.

Dayton called B.S. on that one, saying the owners' share of the stadium cost was theirs to pay, not the public's. Over and above the fact, of course, that PSLs are simply a backdoor way to double-charge the customers.

So what does this have to do with Miami?

Well, Marlins' owner Jeffrey Loria was busily fleecing the local rubes, too, yesterday, trading almost every significant Marlins player to Toronto for what amounts to pocket change -- completing the wholesale dismantling of the team that began last summer, and which happened against the backdrop of the citizens of Miami ponying up $350 for the Marlins' new ballpark.

To say the least, this is an egregious betrayal of the public trust at best, and outright fraud at the worst. One can only hope that there's a Mark Dayton in South Florida with the juice to hold Loria's feet to the fire, too.

Either that, or Bud Selig mans up and acts like a commissioner. Which is to say: Nix the trade, using the "best interests of baseball" codicil as justification.

Wouldn't hold my breath on that one, though.

Ben Smith's blog.