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Chicago Cubs baseball

Will Cubs leave Arizona for Florida?

Mesa battling to keep longtime spring training partner from moving to Naples

More and more signs are pointing to the very real possibility that the Chicago Cubs could leave Mesa, their spring training home for 57 years, and head to Naples, Fla.

That would reverse a recent trend of teams moving to Arizona from Florida. The last team to leave the desert for the East Coast was the Cleveland Indians, who moved from Tucson after 26 years to Winter Haven in 1993.

Mesa Mayor Scott Smith said Saturday the city plans to build a new complex to keep the Cubs in Arizona. The Phoenix Business Journal reported that Smith said, via Twitter, "To remove all doubt: Mesa proposal to Cubs will build new stadium and training facilities that are the best in all of baseball."

But Mr. Cub himself, Ernie Banks, appears to be in favor of the move.

He’s a futurist, that’s what I see,” Banks said late Friday during a meeting with Bouchard, according to Naplesnews.com.

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The Chicago Cubs have trained in Mesa since 1952. But that could soon end.