Diamondbacks file lawsuit against Maricopa County over stadium dispute

Posted at 5:16 PM, Jan 03, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-04 14:29:29-05

After being denied the opportunity explore other stadium options, the Arizona Diamondbacks filed a lawsuit in Superior Court of Arizona against the Maricopa County Stadium District on Tuesday. 

The lawsuit stems from a lengthy dispute between the Diamondbacks and the Stadium District regarding requested repairs and upgrades to Chase Field in Phoenix, where the D-backs have played since the franchise began MLB play in 1998. 

How does Chase Field compare to ballparks around the country? Check out their construction years and costs in the map below.

In March, the Diamondbacks asked permission from the Stadium District to explore other venues after the Stadium District indicated it will not pay for $135 million dollars in requested maintenance and upgrades of Chase Field.

The Stadium District denied that request.  

"We have spent more than four years suggesting alternative solutions that would help the Maricopa County Stadium District hold up its end of our agreement, including multiple offers for us to assume all of the financial responsibilities they currently hold. All of our offers have been denied," D-backs managing general partner Ken Kendrick told

According to the Associated Press, Kendrick and the D-backs offered to cover the $135 million in exchange for a reduction of license fee payments and the ability to book Chase Field for non-baseball events, but the Stadium District denied that request, as well. 

Kendrick said the lawsuit "will have absolutely no impact on the day-to-back operations of the D-backs and the upcoming season and that for 2017, Chase Field is completely safe."

In a statement, D-backs attorney Leo R. Beus said the team is not seeking damages or taxpayer funding in the lawsuit.

"They are asking the court for the ability to remove the contract restriction that prevents the Diamondbacks from exploring other stadium options," Beus said, according to

The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors chairman issued a statement which read: 

"It is disappointing the Diamondbacks are suing their fans who helped build Chase Field. The team simply wants out of the contract that makes them stay and play through the 2028 season. Saying the facility is in disrepair is outrageous. The Maricopa County Stadium District has spent millions during the off-season on concrete and steel work that keeps the stadium safe and looking great for each baseball season. 
The Diamondbacks have expressed dissatisfaction with county ownership over the past year, yet when presented with a potential buyer last summer, the team didn't have the courtesy to meet with them. It seems the team just wants a new stadium now. Maricopa County is committed to keeping the Diamondbacks at Chase Field through the term of the contract. That is good for the taxpayers who made the investment that brought major league baseball here."