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This Day in Buffalo Sports History: Hey, look us over

   Mar. 25, 1991 --  The city of Buffalo had high hopes of getting an expansion team when Major League Baseball decided to add two teams in the 1990's. The city had a great track record of baseball interest and powerful local backing in Bob Rich Jr.

   A committee came to town on this day to see the then-relatively new Pilot Field and talk to everyone involved. News columnist Larry Felser started his story on the event this way:

   The National League Expansion Committee came to Buffalo Monday. Its members looked, they listened, they chatted a little, then they left town.

   Other than the committee members themselves, no one knows any more about Buffalo's chances for a major league baseball team than he did Monday morning.

   It was a little like a Security Council meeting at the United Nations. Everyone talked around a variety of subjects. There was so little straightforward speech that onlookers kept trying to interpret body language and assess the meaning of a furrowed brow, an arched eyebrow and pursed lips.

   The moment of truth, if there was such a thing, may have come when someone asked Douglas Danforth, chairman of the Pittsburgh Pirates, about what he perceived as Buffalo's negatives.

   "It would be great if you had another million people living here," answered Danforth. Antennas went up. The translation of Danforth's remarks was: "Nice little stadium; good people; strong presentation; nice little town; too small a market."

--- Budd Bailey

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