Baseball commissioner Bud Selig said his patience is running thin in his latest ominous-sounding assessment of the Rays' ongoing attendance and stadium issues.

"It is beyond disappointing," Selig said Tuesday. "You cannot ask a franchise to continue, when they have been so competitive and really, really done a marvelous job, in a situation that is economically not tolerable."

Selig offered no solutions or deadlines, saying he will continue conversations with Rays principal owner Stuart Sternberg, but took a double-barreled shot at the Tampa Bay situation.

He called the Rays' attendance "very disappointing and very worrisome," citing their average 17,791, which ranks 29th in the majors (ahead of only Miami) and well below the overall average of 30,268.

"Look at their club in the major leagues and it's competitive, and is averaging 18,000 people a game," he said. "That may have been okay in 1956, but it's not okay today."

And Selig said Tropicana Field, where the Rays are in the 16th season of a 30-year use agreement, is a major issue.

"There's no question there's a stadium problem," Selig said. "There's no debate about it. The question is what to do about it and when to do it and where, and those are conversations Mr. Sternberg and I will have."