Purdy interview on KNBR

Merc columnist and all-around San Jose booster Mark Purdy was on the Fitz and Brooks show today (podcast MP3). After a few minutes of figuring out where the Niners’ season went wrong, Bob Fitzgerald asked Purdy about the ballpark situation. At no point was there a mention of yesterday’s news about the Redevelopment Agency’s funding shortage. What Purdy revealed was no less interesting, and I can provide a small amount of additional back story.

Asked about the state of the MLB panel’s report, Purdy said this:

What I know is that Lew Wolff did have a meeting a couple, three weeks ago. (He) came out of that meeting feeling optimistic that the report was gonna be issued soon, and optimistic that it was gonna come down in favor of the A’s at least being able to explore the ballpark in San Jose. I know that.

I also know that another source close to that… they are proceeding down only one track at the moment… they’re proceeding down the San Jose track… at the moment. That’s what I know.

As I understand it, Wolff met with Selig twice in September, once in LA during an A’s road trip and again in Milwaukee, Selig’s home turf. Some time after that, I started hearing that South Bay advocates were feeling pretty good about things. I didn’t get any info then about what they were feeling good about. Apparently Purdy did get it.

If true, there are some major takeaways, which combined with some info we know about the Giants, makes the picture much, much clearer.

  • Oakland is not under consideration at this stage, only San Jose is. Note that Purdy did not say that Oakland was completely eliminated, only that it isn’t in the running “at the moment.” If San Jose fails, Oakland becomes a factor again. But only if San Jose fails.
  • Something will happen at the owners meetings. Sure, but which owners meetings? The first set is November 17-18 in Orlando. The next set will be December 6-9 at Lake Buena Vista, which is just outside Orlando. As much as the A’s situation continues to linger, the owners will also spend a good deal of time on the lingering fate of the Tampa Bay Rays, who are based only two hours southwest of Orlando.
  • Ruling that the A’s will be able to explore building a ballpark in San Jose. This is the one I’m most curious about, because if it’s true, it represents a sort of softening on MLB’s part. MLB generally won’t allow a city to get a team unless there is a signed deal in place. They even left DC hanging while lawsuits and eminent domain proceedings threatened the prospects of what would eventually become Nationals Park. This news indicates that San Jose will have a chance, but will need to get the rest of its pieces in place (land, referendum). That could give San Jose no more than a 6-9 month window – 6 months if land proceedings go smoothly or 9+ if eminent domain is required. Plus you can never tell what will happen on the legal front (Giants or surrogates).

Purdy spends the rest of the segment theorizing what might be happening behind the scenes. As much as it sucks to be kept in suspense, I’d much rather the panel take this time to work out all of the details, than to have Selig and the owners make a decision and then clean up the mess afterward. Even then, it’s uncertain what the Giants will do, since they are maintaining a “no-negotiation” stance. I guess when it comes to dealing with any Halloween-colored team owned by a lawyer, things tend to get messy.

41 thoughts on “Purdy interview on KNBR

  1. Thanks for that halloween themed comment ML. Saved might night after I saw this monstrosity online thanks to my mother-in-law…

  2. @ML–listening to the podcast Purdy says that he spoke to one ML owner last week who indicated that he felt the vote about San Jose would be during the owners meeting in December—personally feel that the recent developments are all part of the chess game with the gints and potentially eliminating the need for a ballot measure in SJ—other than to challenge the EIR (show me one that hasn’t been challenged) you take away the gints ammo in trying to meddle in SJ…and as you suggested it allows the redevelopment agency to focus on the Autumn extension and other infratsturcture improvements to support a $500M private investment.

  3. Did I every mention that The Mercs Mark Purdy was DA MAN!
    GoA’s stated “potentially eliminating the need for a ballot measure in SJ”…music to my ears!
    Does anyone recall if the EIR for then PacBell Park was challenged in a court of law?
    Here’s an interesting link I came across the other day:

    http://www.sanjoseca.gov/planning/diridon/presentations/workshop-3_08-07-2010.pdf

    If there’s any question on why MLB is focusing solely on San Jose for the A’s, this document answers! Notice how the ballpark overlay in the Diridon presenation is exactly what we’ve been seeing over the past couple of months from 360 Architecture. Also notice how W. San Carlos Street near Bird Ave. will be developed with hotel/hospitality in mind…perhaps Wolff will get in on this as well.

  4. wasn’t purdy one of the earliest backers for the a’s to move to sj.

    what’s this news that the a’s can bypass the election in spring? that’d def help a lot with the progress. instead of maybe a 2015 opening which means you’d have ground broken on the park probably in late 2012-early 2013, that maybe that could start up maybe by late 2011-early 2012?

  5. …the nail in the coffin is coming soon. /crosses fingers

    i still maintain my schedule predictions:

    - nov: brc recommendations (including some repercussions to the gints)
    - dec: owners votes, approves bay area 3 market territory (sf/sj/shared east bay)
    - jan: sf bonds expires, lew announces he will purchase the stadium land from sj as well as adjacent parcels
    - feb: sj renouncecs referendum as no public land/funds are used
    - mar: ground breaking for cisco field

    this satisfies everyones requirements:
    1) oakland had their chance with jls, vc, etc. but no government backing/plans/etc. (in case of a lawsuit). besides they’re busy with al davis’ new home (again)
    2) sf bonds expires so the city can’t sue sj for revenue obstruction or some other bs.
    3) lew wolf gets a chance to develop more real estate around the future commuter corridor site
    4) referendum isn’t needed so gints cant do their viral polling/propaganda tactics and the unions can’t complain
    5) giants will probably get initial tv revenue (3-5 years?) or lump sum amount
    6) a’s finally get a new home!

    • @ST – Prepare to be disappointed. The 6-9 month window is not to wrap everything up, rather to get the details of the deal in place, including all of the side deals. There is no way groundbreaking could start next March. The relocations of AT&T and Aeris will both take time as neither will move until appropriate replacement sites are found, with new facilities built out to suit their respective needs. Neither company can afford significant downtime. That process alone could take the better part of a year. Only after that is completed can the City continue with demolition and site cleanup. I don’t expect Aeris to close up shop because this site is their only South Bay location, and they’d presumably want to keep selling locally. According to loopnet, there is a site nearby on W San Carlos that could work for Aeris and is also for sale. As for AT&T, I’m not so sure about where a new site could be. Their parking requirements make looking for a site difficult.
      Bottom line, I can’t see groundbreaking happening until at least a year from now, maybe even spring 2012.

  6. loved purdy’s comment that the cisco field in sj would be further away from at&t than the new nats park is from camden and laa’s park is from dodger stadium.

  7. groundbreaking next march? wow that’s being extremely optimistic eh? that’d mean basically a 2013 opening for the park since it takes 2-2.5 years from the first shovel to opening day if you average out the construction timeline of most of the parks built in the past two decades.

  8. RM,
    Merc states that SJRA has spent $24 million to date for half of the 14-acre Diridon South site. Any chance that the half is now valued less than $24 mill; say between $15-20 million? With the remaining parcels reportedly valued at $20 million (perhaps even less), could Wolff/A’s theoretically puchase all the land (both city owned and ATT/Aeris) for $35-40 million?

    Wishful thinking scenario: Wolff/A’s buy all the land, making a ballot measure unnecessary, and SJRA uses funds for Autumn Pkwy. and further land acquisitions near W.San Carlos and Bird, which would then be leased back to Wolff for hotel/retail development.

    With so much commercial/office space for lease in SJ, the city just better get AT&T what they want in terms of comparable work site.

  9. @Tony D. – It’s possible, but I doubt it. Maybe a 10% drop in value.

    I missed replying to another point by ST. The Giants’ debt service is up in 2017, not 2011. It has been speculated that the Giants may be receiving some sort of protection for the first ten years, but I haven’t seen anything to support this.

  10. Damn Phillies!
    If, or when, the panel and Selig recommend opening up SCCo/SJ for the A’s, the Giants/Neukom won’t have a choice but to negotiate with the A’s.
    Just like that other kicking/screaming attorney owner from Baltimore had to negotiate with MLB.

  11. There won’t be even a hint of what MLB is thinking regarding the A’s ballpark until the following two events have been completed:

    1. The World Series
    2. The November election

    Anyone, Mark Purdy included, who thinks they have the inside scoop now is speculating/wishful thinking. I would be suprised to hear anything of substance before December 1.

  12. Dan, you realize Mark Purfy has access to people ML and only wish we could talk to, right? Seriously, the guy is reporting truth.

  13. ML – Thanks for all your hard work on this blog, I check it constantly!

  14. This is the Dan who usually posts

    Agree with Jeff, Purdy is not just pulling stuff out of his ass. If he got word from the horses mouth that’s what the house said.

  15. Anyone have a time machine?

    I want to go forward to when the stadium is built and the Giants are not in the playoffs.

  16. Purdy reports what some knowledgeable people told him. It may prove to be accurate, maybe not, and it’s surely not 100% of the story. It is, though, what those knowledgeable people wanted Purdy to report.

  17. (Changed name not to confuse the readers).

    Who is this source that Mark Purdy is talking to? The A’s stadium issue has been on hold for how many months????Now in the middle of the playoffs and weeks before a major national election (involving Barbara Boxer, Jerry Brown, the mayor of Oakland) some “knowledgeable people” have given info to a local sports columnist/San Jose enthusiast so that he can pass on the news to a local radio sports program.

    Reread the original post. If Purdy has been talking with anybody, it’s sounds more like Lew Wolff or an A’s employee and not the commisioner. The lack of specifics indicates speculation/wishful thinking. Wolff and Reed have been pushing Selig for a long time, I could see why they want to bring up the issue now. However, I could be wrong. Selig might announce his decision while handing the world series trophy to the Giants/Phillies/Rangers/Yankees…or perhaps at a press conference with Boxer and Brown a day before the election.

  18. Dan2,
    Mark Purdy spoke to Lew Wolff, who’s a good friend/frat brother of MLB commissioner Bud Selig.
    Who ever said the panel report was on “hold?”. Answer: no one!
    And what the heck does the November elections have to do with an A’s ballpark?
    Answer: nothing! Anything else to “add” to this discussion Dan2? (LOL)

  19. Keep in mind Steve Schott in 2004 already got 75% vote from the other owners but BS did not put San Jose to a vote because of he did not like that Schott went out and did his job for him by building a “consensus” without him involved.

    Therefore the owners vote will be the easy part as it is obvious MLB made a mistake years ago by locking themselves out of the lucrative Silicon Valley market and locking the A’s into the East Bay. The other owners are not dumb as they are rich and powerful for a reason. Do not think for one second these guys care about the Giants in the least bit. It is about what is the best for MLB as a whole and the A’s suck so much $$ out of revenue sharing it is “eye opening”.

    If Lew Wolff buys the rest of the land then the voter referendum becomes a moot point and I say for the cost (35 million or so) is the best way to go for Wolff. He has massive corporate support from SVLG and Cisco on board for naming rights. Not to mention the untapped affluent fan base with disposable income nearby.

    People in San Jose are simple…We won’t pay for your ballpark but if you build it we have no problem spending $$ on a good time. I know being from San Jose I would easily spend $30 on top of tickets to watch a game but I would never pay a dime from my taxpayer money to see it get built.

    By eliminating the politics he will get his stadium much sooner and reap the benefits in a much shorter time frame. Fans will see that he built it 100% privately and they will appreciate Wolff and the team for it….just watch.

    The City of San Jose can easily let Wolff “in” on redevelopment projects in the city down the road as a “thank you” for buying the land when the city is broke to get the stadium going.

    I say A’s will be ready to move into the new place by 2014. Anything sooner as I agree with ML is “wishful” thinking for the reasons stated above.

  20. What will the Giants’ astroturf group and the other nonsense group complain about if Lew Wolff pays for everything? I can just hear the whining now: “Traffic!” “Noise!” “Light pollution!” “Office buildings would be better!” (We have something like a 25% vacancy rate for office space but “Better Sense San Jose” wants more offices on the property instead of a ballpark. Just look at the big office building down the street behind the convention center – big, modern office building, never occupied.)

    The Giants group exists to oppose the A’s in San Jose. Doesn’t matter how much sense the ballpark make or if it doesn’t cost San Jose a dime. They’re going to oppose it at every step.

    “No matter what it is or who commenced it – I’m against it.” – Groucho Marx, in “Horsefeathers”

  21. FWIW, I think there could be a rush to get this project done because the A’s only have leases for the Coliseum through 2013, I believe. How cooperative will Oakland be on lease extensions if the San Jose stadium is not ready until some time after 2014? PacBell Park probably won’t be available, either.

    Of course, there is a precedent: the New Jersey Nets have lingered in New Jersey for years now even though everyone knows they are moving to Brooklyn.

  22. ML, et. al, yes, the ground breaking was wishful thinking, but i was more speculating on a “ceremonious’ groundbreaking realizing that the demolition and land clearing still had to be done. Thanks though for the clarification on the SF debt service (where can i read more on this, couldn’t find it via google). Guess I misinterpreted what LS wrote before.

    • Even then, it’s uncertain what the Giants will do, since they are maintaining a “no-negotiation” stance. I guess when it comes to dealing with any Halloween-colored team owned by a lawyer, things tend to get messy.

      Question:

      Was the MLB BRC assembled to survey the East & South Bay for possible ballpark locations AND resolve any T-Rights dispute or simply the former? Since the Giants would almost certainly put up legal roadblocks if the A’s were granted permission to pursue a SJ ballpark, wouldn’t the Commissioner’s Office & MLB BRC resolve those matters internally prior to announcing their recommendation publicly?

      .

      I’m just trying to dig down and figure out the true scope of the MLB BRC. If their sole goal is to decide between Oakland and San Jose, why would they potentially subject the A’s and San Jose to a expensive legal mess when the Giants inevitably object? It just seems like a huge conflict of interest to have the A’s and SJ spend their limited funds on a project that could potentially fail because of another MLB franchise.

      .

      Also, if MLB partially funds a special spring election in SJ, how could the Giants spend a dime electioneering against a Prop MLB supports? Thanks for any clarification.

  23. Maybe MLB could require the replacement of Neukom as general partner? If he is going to oppose what MLB is promoting, out he should go. Sell your shares and bye bye, Neukom. You’re outta here. The Giants effectively have locked MLB out of Silicon Valley, promoting the best interests of the Frisco franchise to the detriment of MLB as a whole. We have the tail wagging the dog here.

  24. @Briggs, the MLB panel was not, originally, tasked with exploring the South Bay at all. Their original charter was to look into the East Bay, specifically Alameda and Contra Costa Counties.So it is safe to say that the panel wasn’t originally chartered with making a business deal that works for the Giants. It may have morphed into that, but who knows? It was rumored to have morphed into a “help Oakland build a business case” group at one point, but that seems to have been false.
    .
    As far as the ruminations around a potential election, I don’t think anyone would have a real answer. The only situation that is remotely similar in recent years was the Washington Nationals, and that wasn’t really the same thing.
    .
    In that case, MLB moved forward with announcing Los Natspos move before striking a deal with the Orioles. I honestly don’t think that is even realistic in this case. So, if the MLB panel is going to suggest San Jose be open to the A’s in one fashion or another, they are probably going to have show that the A’s move wouldn’t hurt the Giants, or set a number for how much it could hurt them.
    .
    I am guessing we are all within 6 weeks of knowing, either way.

  25. GoJOhn10- Wow, thanks for that news. It would be interesting if KTRB can turn out to be a South Bay outlet for Sharks, A’s, and eventually the 49ers home. I know it’s probably as concrete as JLS/VC, but still… =)

  26. KNBR tried to get the A’s over to 1050…my idea!
    Is this true?

  27. I remember back in the mid 70′s when the A’s were on KNBR and the Giant’s on KSFO.

  28. good, just another sign that the a’s will stay here long term, most likely now in sj, if they buy up 860.

    and please somebody get fuel to the transmitter because once the sun goes down, the reception turns into crap and it’s basically unlistenable at this point which at least during the baseball season i could at least hear korach and company even with all the fuzz.

  29. south bay sports outlet? i doubt it. sharks have been on their fm station since they were created back in the early 90s and really don’t see them leaving one of the most popular stations down in sj. niners? why would they leave knbr? even though sfg are the “kings” of that station, the niners are probably #2 and all if not most of their fans are listeners to knbr too.

    again i think the raiders and 860 should work out an agreement or should’ve worked out an agreement before they went to 1550/105.3. be perfect as 860 would need programming after the baseball season and even best case scenario for the a’s if they actually go deep into the playoffs, 860 still wouldn’t have programming for most of nov and dec.

    i really don’t see any other pro sports team other than the raiders that would go to 860 as the warriors most likely won’t ever move away from knbr either. now lets say if the kings to sj than i definitely could see them moving to 860. and i’ve brought up the idea of maybe hiring some of the 1140 sac sports station personal to move to 860 as 1140 would be officially done as a sports station in sactown once the kings leave.

    9-10:ditto
    10-12:tittle
    12-3:jj/mouth
    3-7:napier/lamb…basically the time slot they have on 1140 and add the fact that lamb is an a’s fan wouldn’t hurt
    7-10:krueger

    i can dream can’t i?

  30. is there ANY WAY for the reception to get any better than it has this past season? forget about late in the season when nobody was sent to fuel up the transmitter. earlier in the season i had no problem with the reception, maybe was in the minority but late once the sun goes down and now with it being fall going down early, the reception is just plain horrible.

    again i’ve said it before i’m not looking for 680 reception which is one of the most powerful in the country especially out here in the west coast. but heck can 860 even be 1050? 1050 isn’t as powerful but at least you can hear it during the night.

    860 during the day is loud and clear but this night issue, can it be resolved in anyway to make it even adequate for most of the bay area?

  31. Tony… KNBR didn’t try to get the A’s. I have exchanged correspondence with folks at KNBR for years asking why they weren’t trying to get the A’s and the answer has always been some flavor of “No way in Hell.”

  32. Thanks Jeffrey,
    I guess KNBR can go to HELL then (except for Fitz). Yes, please, make the signal for 860 stronger at night.

  33. At times, while driving around on the peninsula during the day, I’ll get static or a spanish speaking station while listening to 860..

  34. The fuel to the transmitter thing doesn’t have anything to do with the nighttime signal weakening. The signal weakens because they have to switch from a multi-directional transmitter in Hayward to a directional transmitter near Livermore. They are both 50kW, but the directional and distance makes it weaker. The fuel problem is what was causing the signal to die completely. If the generator ran out of gas it would stop making electricity and the tower would go dark.

  35. Does this mean 680 and 1050 has directional transmitters and why their signals are still pretty clear during night all year long compared to 860? 1050 had issues early on at night, did they formerly use a directional transmitter and then went to a multi one?

    So there is no way for 860 to get a multi directional transmitter themselves? You’d think 860 which has two sports teams that play most of their games at night, A’s and Stanford, especially with the A’s would somehow try to get a multi directional transmitter for it’s station right?

  36. funny that some thought that when 860 went all sports that we’d eventually get shows to call in and talk local sports. well 860 first went to all national syndication from fox sports radio to sporting news radio, to sportsbyline at night. then tittle and jj/mouth show came aboard in the last year or so and that finally gave the station a local flavor during the day since the sportsbyline is based here in the bay area and they got a couple of local guys here as hosts.

    probably haven’t hired any local hosts besides ditto who i believe was sports director on 860 because they’d have to pay them and at this time if the owners couldn’t pay to help “fuel” the transmitter, then they probably couldn’t pay to have real local shows, no disrespect to the likes of tittle and jj/mouth, heck even townsend’s show at night.

    hopefully if the a’s buy 860 that they could actually pay some to get some local hosts. shouldn’t cost a ton to hire a few to do a couple of live local shows during the day. how much is the salary of a sports radio host these days. with the economy the way it is and hearing how many layoffs there have been in the past year or two, you gotta think it wouldn’t cost a ton to hire a handful of guys to run the station if you’re a “big league team”. you’d think there would be a lot of experienced guys around who’d want to host a local sports radio talk show here in the bay area.

    again keep mentioning the name of krueger who if you haven’t heard or read is now at least a “part time employee” of 860 right now as he’s doing short commentary pieces for the station. he isn’t an a’s fan but he’s a respected sports personality here and he wouldn’t need to be a a’s homer, just have a solid sports show locally where you can talk about any team you’d want.

  37. funny that some thought that when 860 went all sports that we’d eventually get shows to call in and talk local sports. well 860 first went to all national syndication from fox sports radio to sporting news radio, to sportsbyline at night. then tittle and jj/mouth show came aboard in the last year or so and that finally gave the station a local flavor during the day since the sportsbyline is based here in the bay area and they got a couple of local guys here as hosts.

    probably haven’t hired any local hosts besides ditto who i believe was sports director on 860 because they’d have to pay them and at this time if the owners couldn’t pay to help “fuel” the transmitter, then they probably couldn’t pay to have real local shows, no disrespect to the likes of tittle and jj/mouth, heck even townsend’s show at night.

    hopefully if the a’s buy 860 that they could actually pay some to get some local hosts. shouldn’t cost a ton to hire a few to do a couple of live local shows during the day. how much is the salary of a sports radio host these days. with the economy the way it is and hearing how many layoffs there have been in the past year or two, you gotta think it wouldn’t cost a ton to hire a handful of guys to run the station if you’re a “big league team”. you’d think there would be a lot of experienced guys around who’d want to host a local sports radio talk show here in the bay area.

    again keep mentioning the name of krueger who if you haven’t heard or read is now at least a “part time employee” of 860 right now as he’s doing short commentary pieces for the station. he isn’t an a’s fan but he’s a respected sports personality here and he wouldn’t need to be a a’s homer, just have a solid sports show locally where you can talk about any team you’d want.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s