The adult conversation

Two weeks ago, Think Big Sacramento released its 100 Day report (PDF), meant to provide a clear picture of funding and economic impact of a new downtown railyards arena for the Sacramento Kings. The 199-page report is actually comprised of 10 separate reports, the last two covering nearly 70 pages of economic impact. Unfortunately, no reader will find the solution within the 199 pages, though that can be somewhat forgiven since they’ve only had 100 days to put this together. Still, the document is a good, important step on the way to actually building anything because it actually lays out all of the financing options, public and private.

Barrett Sports Group prepared a 74-slide Powerpoint presentation on those financing options. I’ll cut to the chase and list the conclusions (emphasis not mine):

  • Public-Private finance plan will likely include a public contribution in the form of land
  • Parcels of public land located in the downtown area, many of which are not currently being used or are severely underutilized have the potential to increase in value due to the development of the ESC downtown
  • ESC development development allows for the maximization of land sales that could increase the number of jobs created in the short term and increase the economic impact of the project by encouraging private development
  • Finance plan will require support from three areas: private investment, user fees and public participation
  • User fees represent a key contribution as these revenues are provided by those benefiting from the facility and bear a direct nexus to the complex

Doesn’t tell you much, does it? The conclusion actually belies the other key information within the presentation. For instance, BSG studied every possible public financing option, from taxes to fees to the sale of parking rights. Here’s the entire list:

Unrealistic sources were culled, cutting it from 58 to 36. The following is the list Sacramento citizens, the public and private sectors can consider as feasible for any kind of contribution:

Once you get past the first eight options (the usual taxes used for many venue financing plans) the pickings get pretty slim. There was talk of potentially selling future parking revenue to a private operator in exchange for an upfront payment, which may be illegal in California. And notice how there’s no mention of redevelopment. That’s a good sign that the folks up in Cowtown are ready to engage in a substantive, adult conversation about how this is going to get done. The rest of the year is supposed to be spent creating the funding mix(es) that will be debated by the City Council, and in all likelihood, voted on by Sacramento voters. That’s a tough one to deal with, considering another component study’s admission that only one-quarter of visitors to ARCO/Power Balance come from within Sacramento city limits.

Some other interesting nuggets from the study:

  • The Oakland Coliseum gets $1.2 million per year from the numerous billboards spread throughout the complex. That’s about as much money as they get from the A’s. FWIW, the Raiders pay a little more than a half million bucks to the Coliseum Authority annually.
  • Public support for user fees is as follows: Selling naming rights: 74%; Parking surcharge: 71%; Ticket surcharge: 57%; Arena fee on concessions: 57%
  • One assumed source of revenue is the sale of other various lands, including the Natomas site where ARCO/Power Balance currently sits and another city-owned Natomas site.
  • A remote source of financing being considered is called EB-5, or “green card” financing. It would provide a conditional green card to immigrants who invest at least $500k or $1 million dollars. The Atlantic Yards project was cited as an example, though the EB-5 financing was used for ancillary development, not Barclays Center. The EB-5 may be what attracts Filipino investor Manny V. Pangilinan, though as someone a little familiar with the immigration process, I have to say that people with money or business skills aren’t the ones who need help with green cards.

While I’m glad that Sacramento is going through the process (even if it eventually leads nowhere), I’m confounded that Oakland has not gone through even a tiny bit of this. Why not? The Bee’s Marcos Breton nails the similarity between Sacramento and Oakland:

One thing is certain: Sacramento does not have the corporate base to privately finance buildings, such as AT&T Park in San Francisco or the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

Sounds familiar, right? No number of cute T-shirts or banners hung from railings is going to take the place of real discourse over what Oakland needs to accomplish to retain both of its outdoor teams, let alone the Warriors. If Oakland is serious about getting something done it needs to have its adult conversation. Not lip service. Not a claim of getting an EIR done in a year and then not having a draft in nine months. Getting something big done starts with getting the little things done. And if you’re not having that dialogue with your citizens, you’re just avoiding the subject.

P.S. Of course, Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson goes and blows away the adult conversation with an offhand comment about how Cowtown can support two teams, including a relocated A’s franchise.

88 thoughts on “The adult conversation

  1. re: Not a claim of getting an EIR done in a year and then not having a draft in nine months. Getting something big done starts with getting the little things done. And if you’re not having that dialogue with your citizens, you’re just avoiding the subject.

    ..yes, it sure looks like Oakland, rather than coming out and admitting it can’t develop a new ballpark, just plays the game of stall, stall, stall.

  2. You’re slamming Rick Tittle? Oakland politicians? I am confused as to who this is aimed towards.

  3. @eb – Rick Tittle is doing his listeners a disservice by refusing to have this discussion. The next time he picks up on this will be the first. And to answer your question, I’m criticizing the community (Oakland, East Bay, etc.) for not talking about this.

  4. A bit off-topic (sort of): Read today’s story in the Merc Business, “Bright outlook for jobs in valley.” Some quotes to share with yall: “The Bay Area has been adding jobs at a faster rate than the state and the nation” (emphasis on nation)…”The bulk of the growth is in Silicon Valley”…”the first eight months of 2011, the South Bay gained 20,500 jobs, the SF-San Mateo-Marin region added 12,300 jobs and the East Bay added 4,600.” Now, what was that about Selig wanting to relocate the A’s out of the Bay Area? And what was the quote above relating to corporate base and privately financed buildings? ;o)

  5. @Tony- I love your optimism and I hope your right and I will buy you a beer at Cisco Field in 2015 in Downtown San Jose.

    The demographics between the East Bay and San Jose are not even close. San Jose is sprawling suburbs with low crime, big time corporations, and $$ to spend from high income families.

    The East Bay has some nice areas but some real bad ones that the South Bay cannot even compare with. I like the East Bay and have several friends and colleagues from there. Ironic, my colleagues live out there but commute down 880 or 680 to work in the South Bay.

    I go to the East Bay to have fun, golf, see old friend but going to Oakland for a game? Yeah right…

  6. nice… A long post about Sacramento turns into an admonishment of Oakland….

    has anyone heard a peep out of that meeting btw Quan and Wolff?

    Go A’s!!

  7. @David- previous post is turning into a dump on SJ–so it goes both ways–and no—nothing from either party—when there is nothing to report there is nothing to report…

  8. Whatever. The Oakland Athletics are on the cover of SI. There’s an (Oakland) Athletics movie at the box offices. Brad Pitt is an A’s fan. And the pro-SJ milieu keep, restating their opinion(s) on this blog. All I read on here lately is speculation and drama. I’ll be back when there are facts to discuss.

    Paz

  9. “I go to the East Bay to have fun, golf, see old friend but going to Oakland for a game? Yeah right…”
    So, you don’t go to Oakland A’s games? Yet, you drop wild speculations about a team you don’t see in person.
    “San Jose is sprawling suburbs”
    Reason enough to keep the A’s in Oakland.

  10. Maybe Brad Pitt has more power than Obama, the last proposed celebrity savior.

    Also, the urban density around the proposed sites in Oakland and San Jose is pretty much the same. Playing the “we’re a gritty and real city” card stopped being an option when you collectively gushed over a couple celebrities watching their own movie in your town.

  11. Eb,
    Not being a “sprawling suburb” still doesn’t pay for the ballpark (LOL!). Good to see you posting again NT and for laying down the smackdown!

  12. Sprawling suburb wasn’t my description of San Jose, it was Sid’s, hence the quotes. Anyways, I hope you’re having a good day Tony, thank you for spending your money in the East Bay when supporting the Oakland A’s all of these years. As a poor, downtrodden community we appreciate it.

  13. Welcome back Nam, it’s been awhile.
    So Sid,you got to the eastbay to have fun, but not to A’s games? Wow, what a fan. Just waiting for SJ I guess, which may never happen.

  14. I know it wasn’t yours and I know that Sid likes to play the classist angle so I doubt he even knows much about urban San Jose. Nevertheless, you certainly ran with the statement to hit on a common theme from the Oakland-only side. Hard to imagine anyone considering that a valid argument when being beaten by Arlington and Anaheim every year.

  15. Nam, I was hardly going for an all out dig at San Jose, it was more a reaction to all of the Oakland/East Bay trashing that is going on, mostly by Sid, btw. While I want the Oakland A’s to remain in their East Bay home, I intentionally try to stay out of the my city is better than yours pissing match. Nothing against San Jose, just irritation on my part.

  16. It’s nice that you can compare Sacramento to Oakland and all and then lash out all who disagree with you. (Tittle? come on dude) However to date no one, no Chuck Reed, Lew Wolff, Keith Wolff, Mike Crowley has ever come forward with anything that come even close to what is presented about. You rail on Oakland supporters for talking like windbags, yet I hear just as much hot air from A’s management/SJ Partisans. The only line I have seen is “Don’t worry Lew and SJ corporate dollars will pay for everything” Get real. You cant ask for complete details of one and gloss over details of another.

    • @Dinosaur Jr. – The adult conversation in San Jose took place over the several years of the EIR passing and the SEIR passing again. I was there for that. Nothing like that has happened in Oakland. Let me know when it does, I’ll be happy to attend.

  17. Oakland EIR needs to be done yes..But this isn’t about EIR. Nothing in the above post mentions anything about EIR. No changing subjects.

  18. @DJr.,
    What the hell are you talking about? (Respectfully)

  19. ML, I really appreciate the work you do, seeing as how this topic (heck, even the A’s in general) isn’t given much in depth coverage in the local media. However, I don’t understand your use of “adult conversation.” Isn’t using rhetoric like that simply going to cause more antagonism between the Oakland/San Jose crowds? This is a wildly frustrating period for Oakland A’s fans, but you generally seem to keep a cool head with this stuff.

    • @eb – Did I not take the A’s to task over the bleachers debacle? I do my best to be fair and practical. I don’t care if any faction of fans considers me biased or trying to foment something. Either they deal with the task(s) at hand or they don’t. If they don’t I’ll call them out on it. The question should not be why I do this, it’s why don’t more Oaklanders do it?

      @Ethan – I have heard nothing about the meeting.

  20. are these posts from DJr and eb to be taken seriously?

  21. GoA’s I haven’t taken you seriously for months, so feel free to return the favor.

  22. you answered my question with your latest post–thx

  23. Yes ML any news about the Wolff/Quan meeting? You did get great access. Anyway Lew Wolff is not serious about Oakland at this point in time. MLB wants out of Oakland but where do the A’s go with the territorial rights issue. Obviously San Jose is not the answer. Finally how come the blog did not cover the Moneyball premier? Did Lew Wolff show up? The team did. Oh Billy Beane is going to the Cubs, mark that one down.

  24. @Ethan–I missed the Moneyball Premiere because of work, and the tix ($100-500) which were sky high, but for charity. I read on other A’s pages that Lew Wolff showed up and was booed lustfully by the crowd and slipped into the theater ASAP. Bud Selig was invited, but declined (duh!), and many present and former A’s players were there too. Of course Bob Geren was there (BB’s best man), but not sure if he was booed.

  25. I often times wonder how seating is handled at events such as this.
    .
    JK, did you have assigned seats?

  26. To Marine Layer:

    I thought Ethan raised a valid question re: the lack of coverage here re: MoneyBall. Do I think it will get a ballpark built? Of course not but it was a fairly significant thing for the OAKLAND A’s.

    Can you address this?

    Also, since you have Lew Wolff’s ear – can you check in on the meeting with Mayor Quan?

    Thanks.

    A’s Observer

    PS. Go OAKLAND Raiders!

  27. @fc–i didn’t go to it, but I think it was assigned seating. I have a FB friend who went and I’ll find out more details for you and post. Tix were pretty high–$100-500, but for charity. And I’m wondering how many were given out free, like the players and their families, the actors, etc…The place is huge and seats 3000 and am not sure if it was all sold out at these prices.

  28. So maybe a portion of the 3,000 at the premier of “Moneyball” booed Lew Wolff, which represents a tiny fraction of the entire Bay Area fanbase. First response: so what! First question: what’s your point? I’ll tell yah what: when that first shovel hits the ground for Cisco Field in SJ, I’m going to cheer loudly for Lew Wolff!

  29. @A’s observer – There has been more than enough coverage in the regular media about the premiere. I wasn’t there. How could I even do it justice? I won’t talk Moneyball the movie until I see Moneyball the movie. And I plan to see it just as I saw most games in 2002: a cheap Friday morning matinee in a half-full venue where it’s easy to heckle.

  30. cues the usual mantra…..oakland baseball stadium plan? financing? brad pitt as a new owner? /crickets chirping…. it’s disturbing how east bay supporters continually lash out at everyone, except for their community at large (meaning government and general public). And trying to say SJ is in the same boat as Oakland? Yes, when oakland has eir, land acquisitions, large corporate support, government backing, and public endorsement too…../yawn

  31. @TonyD–they booed, heckled and flipped Wolff off outside of the theater just before he slipped in. The only shovel hitting the ground at Diridon will be for the strip mall they’ll eventually build there.
    @ML–i’m surprised Lewie didn’t set you up for tickets to the Premiere. You’re on a first named basis with the dude.
    @Anon–i’m so sick and tired of the same old, same old from you and your ilk on here. Do you just copy and paste the same thing and add Brad Pitt as a new owner in your latest installment? That crickets chirping line has been used by at least 6 people on here. Find new material, it’s getting rather stale. At least I mix it up a bit on here.

  32. JK: Did they boo themselves for electing politicians dismissive of the A’s? Who proudly did nothing to get a new ballpark going while San Jose, with no hope of getting a team, went ahead and bought up properties and did an EIR?…And JK, where is your financing plan for the ballpark? It can’t be paid for with “views” and “crazy history.” (History, BTW, that includes many years of bottom-feeder attendance.)

  33. @jk-usa-“Lew Wolff showed up and was booed lustfully by the crowd”
    You Oakland-Only people sure are classy.
    .
    @jk-usa-“At least I mix it up a bit on here.”
    No, you don’t. Your comments are very predictable:
    .
    Someone: Something something something.
    jk-usa: Yea, something something just like Lewie, man I wish he would sell the team to a local group something something Oakland has history something something.

  34. …once again, some of the Oakland-only crowd remind me of how people in Baltimore wanted Robert Irsay to get out of town. He gave them what they wanted. One small complication – he took the team with him…In Wollf’s case, he’d probably sell the team to folks who will move it outside the Bay Area, after a period in which no one comes forward willing to buy the team and build a privately funded ballpark in Oakland.

  35. @pjk–I’ll bet you a dinner to anywhere you want in the BA that a local group will come forward if they sell. Not sure on what ballpark plan they’ll have, depending on the VC EIR and the Raiders going to SC. There was much interest last time and there will be this time too. I’m sure BS will shoot them down, but there will be interest.

  36. …Amazing how many folks don’t want to entertain the notion that the A’s could leave the Bay Area. Ray Ratto the other day mentions Wolff will probably be gone if he can’t get a new ballpark in San Jose. Ratto then adds he doesn’t think the team will leave. So how does a new ballpark get built in Oakland? Ratto doesn’t say.
    ,,,JK: For the 10th time, anyone is free to come forward right now, yesterday, last year, the day before yesterday and express a wish to buy the team and build a privately funded ballpark in Oakland. To date, no one has done so. All we’ve had is Andy Dolich wanting another joint facility for the Raiders and A’s – a total and complete non-starter for not just MLB but for the NFL, too.

  37. @LS–hey, don’t shortchange me, bro. You forgot about my famous Lew Wolff bashing:
    that cheapskate, carpetbagging Lewie, he don’t know jack on how to run a team…something, something…loves Bob Geren like a son, hates Oakland like a stepson, stupid move on tarping the 3rd deck….something something…should have never gotten the team in the first place, secret pact with the devil (aka BS) back in U of W, no Fanfest…something something…doesn’t know where DT Oakland is and where to hold a parade, should retire tomorrow in Tahiti…something something….

  38. Ok, now that it’s out of your system, can you stop spinning every bit of news or comment into an offhand shot at Lew Wolff or John Fisher?

  39. @pjk–out of all the pro-SJ guys you’re the one I’d like to meet for a drink or grab a bite to eat with one of these days. You’ve always been pretty cool to me and there’s a few things you’ve said over these last few years that make you stand above the rest.

  40. …with the A’s season over, I don’t see myself coming to the East Bay anytime soon. You’d have to come down here.

  41. To Marine Layer:

    Okay it’s your website – or as they say ‘your party.’

    But you provide in-depth coverage on many things that the mainstream media also cover. That’s why I was surprised that nothing was mentioned about Moneyball yet subtle nuances of EIR or developments related to San Jose are covered in great detail.

    I’m really glad Oakland got some attention.

    One plea to everyone on this board: PLEASE deal only in facts; one of the great myths is that Oakland ‘did nothing’ to keep the A’s. Nothing could be further than the truth.

    I know the majority of people on this board -including you Marine Layer – want the team to move to San Jose and this board is a rallying point for you all of you in this camp (you’re in the minority among A’s fans but that won’t matter to the ownership).

    But please deal in facts regarding the stadium issue. To say Oakland has done ‘nothing’ is simply not true.

    A’s observer (since 1968; first game ever in Oakland)

  42. A’s Observer—please share facts as to what Oakland has done to keep the A’s and maybe for the benefit of all compare it to what they did to lure the Raiders back to Oakland- facts only please

  43. @A’s observer – This site is about the ballpark chase. We don’t cover sabermetrics, player development, or even game-to-game activity – at least not in any great detail. There are plenty of other places for that, just are there are more than enough stories covering Moneyball. I resent your constantly trying to dictate what material gets covered here. If you don’t like what stories and subjects are covered, you’re free to start your own blog and talk about whatever you like. I know what industry you come from and I’m trying my best not to hold it against you, but it’s hard not to.

  44. re: Nothing could be further than the truth.

    …so what exactly has Oakland done? There was some sort of site study 10 years ago that found the VC area the least feasible, but otherwise, we only know what they’ve done to chase the team away: fire the city manager for suggesting a new ballpark, wreck the Coliseum after reneging on baseball-only improvements, ignore the North of the Coliseum plan. Please tell us what Oakland has done to keep the A’s?

  45. @pjk–okay, we’ll hook up in SJ down the road, regardless of the decision may be (if any at all comes up). There’s a few good eateries/bars in DTSJ I hear, so you can pick it.
    As for VC site being the least feasible 10 years ago in a study, wasn’t it the Laney College site (sports field), not VC? At least Dellums and Quan didn’t totally walk away from a stadium plan, whereras J. Brown didn’t give a rats ass.

  46. @ jk – “@Anon–i’m so sick and tired of the same old, same old from you and your ilk on here. Do you just copy and paste the same thing and add Brad Pitt as a new owner in your latest installment? That crickets chirping line has been used by at least 6 people on here. Find new material, it’s getting rather stale. At least I mix it up a bit on here.” … pot calling kettle black? i realize reality sucks but…../still chirping away . btw – it was you who was proposing brad pit (choose a random rich or famous guy here) originally in the other thread.
    @pjk – “Please tell us what Oakland has done to keep the A’s?” – they had a town hall meeting with a bunch of fans! /woot

  47. JK: When you’re ready, have ML give you my email address, which must be kept private.
    re: What Oakland has done. I’ve seen these neat “Stay” shirts with the A’s logo for the A. Maybe if they can sell about 1 billion of them, that will cover the costs of a new ballpark.

  48. ” If Oakland is serious about getting something done it needs to have its adult conversation. Not lip service.” “And if you’re not having that dialogue with your citizens, you’re just avoiding the subject.”…. if you pro-Oaklanders need help “deciphering” this let us know. We can point you in the right direction and hint, it doesn’t start on Facebook. It starts with the public and your local government….as a matter of fact, I will help ya’ll and send an email to Quan for you:

    To: mayorjeanquan@gmail.com;officeofthemayor@oaklandnet.com

    Hi Jean – I’m very excited to hear that you are proposing a new home in Oakland for my beloved A’s. However, I am also very concerned about the delay in the VC EIR and the transparency of the process. Do you have any updates on this for us? Also, will a new VC stadium effort be privately financed or will it require public funding? Do you have plans to hold a public meeting on this matter to formally propose your plan and solicit feedback?”

  49. @Anon–nope, it wasn’t me on the Brad Pitt ownership thing. Kind of ridiculous. Now that’s a pipe dream and a half!! And BS wouldn’t allow it, cuz Brad actually has a little class compared to the other owners in the Lodge.

  50. re: Do you have any updates on this for us? Also, will a new VC stadium effort be privately financed or will it require public funding?

    …Oakland’s plan is for the A’s to pay for the thing, something they’ve never agreed to. Kind of like me going out and buying a new car and telling the dealer that you, Anon, will pay for it on my behalf.

  51. @eb- When I say “sprawling” suburbs it means families with money. Something San Jose clearly has an advantage over Oakland not only city wise but in the surrounding region.

    @Nam Turk- I know the South Bay in and out, you should try me on it…

    @jk-usa- I have not been to a Giants game in 4 years in protest of them blocking San Jose from the A’s. But have been to 5-7 A’s games over that time. If it was closer (Fremont or San Jose) I would have season tickets. SF and Oak are too far.

    The Pro-Oak crowd always ignores the Giants being 12 miles away dominating their region but still thinks building 12 miles away is a good idea when it would not solve the inequalities that exist between both teams in the market.

    The inequalities between the cities and their surroundings below are obvious:

    Population: Oakland 390K and not growing, San Jose 945k and growing. The surrounding area around Oakland is all SF Giants territory like it or not. The Giants kill it in the East Bay because it is so close with BART and the bridges.

    Crime? Not even close, Oakland has 637 cops for 390k in population. San Jose has 1,100 cops for 1M people. Huge difference.

    Corporations/Sponsors? With the Giants so close this becomes a even wider gap that it should be.

    A Downtown site that does not need 16 businesses to relocate? That does not need a massive overhaul of the roads, freeways, exits, around it? Ouch!

    It is sad that Oakland has done so little while San Jose is pulling out all the stops to get the team. San Jose has no guarantee of the team because of the Giants and Selig….yet they press on.

    Oakland has done nothing since they back stabbed the team with Mt. Davis years ago to keep the team. The city leaders do nothing and blame the owners when they can easily make a phone call or send an email.

    Oakland as a city wants the same deal as San Jose. “We will provide the site but you build it yourself”….What?

    Oakland knows deep down they need a billionaire to build a free stadium and they are stalling the process out thinking that is the best course of action since they know Wolff/Fisher won’t build in Oakland without a public subsidy.

    BTW…Ray Ratto is a born moron, if anyone buys the A’s it will be MLB and they will give “Lewie” the Dodgers. MLB will then decide what to do with the team.

    MLB will “never” build privately in Oakland, it is a fantasy that will never happen…..That could happen anytime without MLB doing anything but yet nothing happens.

    MLB put themselves in this position with Selig and they have to clean up this mess. Lew Wolff selling the team to another buyer will never happen…..that buyer will be MLB a la Montreal Expos. That is a scary thought…..if that happens the Giants would have truly won.

  52. @jk–just curious–you mentioned that LW was booed—hadn’t heard that from anyone else–but wondering if Billy B was also boo’d—after all he supports the A’s moving to SJ and is a part owner–

  53. I don’t understand people getting their boxers in a bunch.

    From my standpoint, particularly living in the SacTown area, I just want the A’s to get a new ballpark in the Bay Area, period. I have no dog in the Oakland vs San Jose fight. None.

    That said, from everything I’ve read in the media, this blog, other A’s websites, the big Lew Wolff interview, studies done from various sources – the city of Oakland has really dropped the ball, and at this point, there really seems to be no viable (by viable, I mean economically viable) option in Oakland. A Jack London Square site sounds nice – but no EIR, very limited space, need of lots of land acquisition, relocation of lots of businesses, and mega bucks on infrastructure upgrades, and probably not enough local corporate support to economically support a privately financed project, no money from the City of Oakland itself. Sorry, but the money just doesn’t pencil in.

    The SJ Diridon site, by contrast, seems to have all the ducks in line – EIR done, needed land acquisitions, pro-active local government, tons of corporate support, economic plan (adjacent condos/real estate) to help support the economics. It’s only hurdle is the Giants’ T-rights. And even at that, there are so many factors that would/should push Selig to opening it up.

    I only support the SJ option because it is the only viable option for the Athletics.

    For the pro-Oakland crowd – I don’t want you to lose the team for your city. But SJ is still part of the same overall urban area, and not all that far for you to go. For me, coming from Sac, it’s about the same. The team is still essentially local. It would just have “San Jose” on it’s away jerseys, instead of “Oakland”.

    And really since we’re all die-hard A’s fans, I know we all want them to stay local, and we all want them to be in the best possible position to economically compete in MLB. And SJ, with all it’s ducks in line to build a stadium, and it’s huge corporate base (which is waaay larger than Oakland’s), is by far the best possible place for the Athletics, and staying in the Bay Area.

  54. Tony D. Standing up and applauding loudly for Jeff Athletic!

  55. Good Lord, can this shit be over someday, please?

  56. Soon, Jeffrey. Soon.

  57. @GoA’s–on a few of the A’s FB sites it was mentioned several times that they booed outside the theater when Wolff showed up and he ducked into the place quickly. Not sure what was going on inside the theater. It was also mention by Greg Papa on the live coverage from the Red carpet (actually the green carpet ) that Wolff was loudly booed by the fans. I thought I heard in the background “Lew Wolff Sucks.”, and another person on one of the sites said she heard that too.

  58. Can I be honest, who cares who booed who? I take that to be akin to the stupid slogans painted on bedsheets…

  59. @jeffrey,
    Agreed 100%..WHO @#%& CARES WHO GOT BOOED!

  60. FWIW, I think it’s wrong to boo Lew Wolff. I don’t agree with everything he’s done, and I do have my frustrations. However, just because he and Fischer are rich, doesn’t mean they have to spend themselves into the poorhouse for the charitable purpose of keeping the A’s in Oakland. I support them trying to make it economically viable and turn a long term profit. It is a business. They have looked at several Oakland sights, and tried really hard to do the Fremont site (spending $30 million in the process, to no avail), and their best option is SJ, by far.

  61. @jeff-athletic–yup, you nailed it “they have looked at several Oakland sites.” Looked, but for not too long, probably in passing by at 70 MPH, but with SJ dialed into the GPS many years before.

  62. re: Looked, but for not too long, probably in passing by at 70 MPH,

    ….Well, MLB’s been looking at Oakland sites for nearly 1,000 days now and seems to be coming up with the same conclusion as Wolff: There aren’t any. We knew the blue ribbon committee was having trouble with its original mission – explore possibilities in the A’s current territory – when it became clear MLB was looking at the San Jose site, too. Why go through all the fuss and controversy if there’s a workable solution in Alameda or Contra Costa counties? Obviously, because there isn’t. Wolff invited MLB to come to Oakland and see for themselves, remember?

    re: .just because he and Fischer are rich, doesn’t mean they have to spend themselves into the poorhouse for the charitable purpose of keeping the A’s in Oakland.

    …Correct.

  63. To all:

    1) What has Oakland done?

    A) It’s there in the record – on the Internet or in your local public library. No point in rehashing it because it won’t change minds here.

    A’s observer.

  64. @pjk–well, they’ve made on average 20 mill profit each year for 6 years, and the franchise value has almost doubled in the same tiime, so spending some of that on a new park in Oakland won’t put them in the poorhouse.Okay, so they won’t do that, but how about a little more into payroll and into the O.co in the meantime?

  65. …Who says the A’s have a profit of $20 mill every hear? Forbes? Which has no access to the actual books and relies on guesswork for its annual stories about what teams make? I’ll bet the franchise is worth a lot more with a lease that allows it to go anywhere in 2 years than it would be with an unpayable 30-year mortgage. I read that Oakland would need $100 mill just to obtain the VC site and make it workable, without even talking about paying for the actual ballpark. Not sure how accurate that is. Meanwhile, what little redevelopment $$ Oakland might have left is going to purchase the Kaiser Convention Center . Yikes….For the 50th time – hard to spend more on payroll when free agents won’t come to Oakland and other players make sure their agents install “no-trade-to-Oakland” clauses in their contracts. I suppose the A’s could pay $11 mill a year to Landon Powell – that would boost the payroll but not produce any more wins.

  66. A’s Observer, I’d love to see your list of what the City of Oakland has done. I am not being facetious.

  67. I would believe Forbes figs over these lying owners any day. The G’s and A’s said they just broke even last year. Open your books, I’d like to see that!!

  68. So Forbes is your source for the $20 mill figure. OK. Then it’s no source at all….

  69. SIgh…i gave an example what to do to encourage local Oakland government to do to get the ball rolling there and yet we hear the same diatribe without any action just wishful thinking and BS. /facepalm.

  70. @pjk–well, they’re just estimates and i bet they’re within 10% + or -.

  71. Jeff-Athletic- You said it the best in a “nut shell”. San Jose is it but Selig still delays. If there was another city involved it would be a very “hush-hush” process and no one would know about it until it was known a ballpark could be constructed.

    New owners would be secondary a la the Washington Nationals. That process was more public because there was no T-rights involved.

    BRC is called the “Blue Ribbon Committee” for show….It really stands for “Baseball Relocation Committee”…..If you read between the lines.

    The signs point to MLB not opening up San Jose:

    -Denying SJ its ballot process not once but twice. Even offering to pay for it over a year ago with nothing since.
    -Ignoring SVLG’s letter that they would support the A’s and Giants in San Jose….no response from Selig.
    -Ignoring Mayor Reed’s multiple letters….Even mocking Selig by talking about the “glacial speed of government” compared to this process.
    -Selig stating the A’s being in Oakland in the first place was a big mistake
    -Selig stating it has always been controversial the Bay Area being 2-teams.
    -Selig stating he will not make any decisions about San Jose unless all options have been “exhausted”.
    -The fact MLB makes more $$ by moving the A’s even to a small market like San Antonio and cashing in far more on the Giants revenue sharing checks in a 1-team Bay Area.
    -Selig’s letter to Wolff stating if Fremont fell through he would be free to speak to “other communities”.
    -The Giants refusal to even negotiate something that was given to them for free from the A’s so they could build a ballpark that never happened.
    -Selig refusing to put to a vote a T-rights change despite massive rumors the other owners would vote in the A’s favor easily.

    When you see all the evidence above it clearly shows San Jose has probability of 10% of occurring or less.

    Tony is right it is up to MLB….too bad MLB is Selig and he is a coward, too scared to even help an old friend from 50 years ago. Then again Selig was BORN AFRAID!

  72. @Sid

    What does Selig have to be afraid of? The Giants throwing a hissy fit?

    I think what he’s more worried about is how can he make the most amount of $$$$ for all the owners. Keeping a team on the $30mil a year dole ain’t it.

    So on one side he has team throwing a hissy fit (while it will still do just fine – great in fact), but making a welfare recipient into a money maker. On the other side the one team remains happy, and the other remains non-viable and on the dole, still losing money for MLB.

    Which way do you think anyone with half a brain is going to go?

    You got it …. the money making way ….. this, even though they’d have to listen to the Giants brass go “whaaaaaaah! we want this market to ourselves, no no no no no!!!”.

    It’s in Selig’s, and all the other MLB owners, best interests to put the A’s in a profitable situation, and without negatively affecting the Giants.

    The BRC, most likely, has been tasked to find that solution. I’m sure they’ve looked at all possibilities in Oakland. I’m sure they’ve looked at all possibilities in Portland, SA, Charlotte, or wherever else. I’m sure they’ve looked at how any of the possibilities will affect the Giants. And I’m sure they’ve looked at the SJ possibility. And here is what I think they’ve found:

    1. There is no viable option in Oakland or East Bay.
    2. Most likely, they’ve found no viable option in other cities. True, just having the A’s out of the Bay Area, even though it wouldn’t improve the A’s situation much, if at all, would make the Giants even more profitable. But it would be better for the A’s to be profitable as well.
    3. The A’s to SJ will not negatively affect the Giants, a lie the Giants like to perpetuate. Of their overall revenue streams, the corporate support and advertising support from the south bay is relatively small. And they wouldn’t lose them, most likely. They’d just have to work a bit harder in retaining that business.
    4. A’s in SJ will make the A’s profitable on their own, turning them from welfare recipient, to contributors to revenue sharing, while the Giants would still be every bit as healthy as they are now.

  73. Here are reasons I think it’s taken the BRC and Selig so long:

    1. Cover every possibility. Cross all t’s, and dot all i’s.
    2. The wish that the Giants would just take the “good for baseball” stance, and back off the T-rights thing, and make it so Selig and MLB wouldn’t have to do anything. The A’s originally did the “good for baseball” thing in ’92 by surrendering the T-rights, and continue to do so now, by not lobbying, not raising lawsuits, and just patiently waiting so as to not upset “the lodge”.
    3. Give the Giants a big head start in getting stable and healthy, so they’re well on their way to paying off the ballpark debt.
    4. Do not give the image of favoritism towards Wolff, since Wolff and Selig were college buds. Taking so painstakingly long has totally squashed any appearance of favoritism.

  74. @jeff-athletic–the favortism/cronyism to allow LW to buy the team was so obvious from the get go, and possibly giving him SJ is just more proof of that, regardless of the wait. All part of the master plan the two frat bros are concocting, but they didn’t think the G’s would be so stubborn.
    Selig repulses me, and his frat bro is not much better.

  75. townsend went on a rant i think wednesday night on his show about how he’s called quan’s office about a possible interview or even an update regarding a new park in oakland and he’s gotten nothing back in return. he then said working with sj it only took a few phones to get reed on his show months ago.

  76. Towney’s kind of worried I’d say. This will affect his future and the future of that station if the A’s leave the area. Tittle’s the man. Hands down the best on that station.

  77. I have no inside information, but I’m guessing the EIR will report that the VC ballpark is doable -for about $700 mill, with Oakland having no money to contribute. The report will talk about getting federal grants for infrastructure (from a federal government that also is broke) and how owners can pay off the ballpark with a 60-year mortgage. The report will not address the weak corporate environment in the East Bay and will leave it to the lucky owners to figure out how to pay for everything.

  78. @jeff-athletic- Your logic is sound in every way when you look at it “Bay Area” only.

    From MLB’s perspective the Bay Area is a wash. The Giants throw 30M in and A’s get 30M out. That means from the naked eye this should not be a 2-team market.

    The problem with San Jose is without the Giants accepting some sort of compensation for sharing the Bay Area or giving up Santa Clara County alone you have major problem from MLB’s point of view.

    The whole A’s giving SJ to the Giants for free is a moot point now and although I agree with you that a move to San Jose would not hurt the Giants but MLB views it differently.

    They think by moving the A’s to San Jose they will have to cut the Giants a break in some fashion for giving up their T-rights. That has never been done in the history of MLB…..Hence why Selig does nothing.

    The “break” could be in revenue sharing, a 1-time payment, etc….But the Giants would have to agree to it period. That by now is 100% obvious even though in reality what the Giants are doing is wrong in every sense. It is against all anti-trust law for them to lock out Silicon Valley because of T-rights.

    Selig does not want to set a precedent for anything, he is too old and conservative. Even to help his old friend out whom he put into this situation.

    Wolff does not press because he knows he will win with SJ or get the Dodgers. San Jose cannot sue or even threaten to sue without Wolff’s approval hence why they do nothing as well.

    Selig will move the team to another market before forcing the Giants to do anything. Hence why he states he will not do anything unless all options have been “exhausted”.

    Cross the T’? and dot the i’s? 922 days for that is absurd. Something else is going on here that no one knows about…

  79. @jeff-athletic- Also if the Giants have the market to themselves they will be a contribute 75M-100M a year in rev sharing.

    The A’s with a new public ballpark anywhere would break even.

    Right now its a 0 net in the Bay Area in terms of rev share. 30M in, 30M out.

    With the A’s gone it would be 75M-100M in and 10 out or in fact 0 out.

    In SJ the A’s would put in 30M but the Giants would be cut a “break” and would only put in 20M or so. That is 50M in vs. 75M-100 in……MLB’s math in a nut shell.

  80. @Sid

    Where do you get your 75M-100M in figure, if the Giants have the market to themselves?

    Do you know how exactly MLB revenue sharing breaks down? How much each profitable team contributes, and how much each welfare team receives? Is it based on market/revenue total, or are their flat rates? Also, do you know, actually know, that the Giants currently contribute $30Mil?

    If anyone can answer these questions, it would be appreciated.

    The only thing I know, and what has been mentioned here on this blog a number of times, is that the A’s receive $30mil a year. I have never seen anywhere how much the Giants pay into revenue sharing, and how revenue sharing breaks down everywhere else.

    So without hard facts/figures, it sounds like, Sid, you making assumptions. Your logic is sound, but even sound logic falls down without facts.

    But that’s the game we play here. There is so little real information – just bits and pieces. So in our die hard A’s support, we try to formulate ideas on what is going to happen, and project on what Bud Selig is thinking, or what MLB wants, what LW’s true motives are, etc etc. It’s freaking maddening.

    The only things we know for sure is that we love our A’s, and the Giants are total f&%$ing @ssholes. ;-)

  81. @j-a- Amen- I will sleep beter once the gints are eliminated from the playoffs entirely!

  82. @Sid Your assumptions regarding how much more the Giants might make with the A’s gone are wildly speculative and questionable.
    .
    Right now, the Giants pretty much sell out every game. Sold out is sold out; they’re not going to realize much more stadium revenue with the A’s gone. P
    .
    Giants TV ratings and merchadise sales would probably go up somewhat, but enough to generate an additional $45 – 70 million – not in revenue – but in revenue sharing to MLB? That’s absurd. It’s not like all A’s TV viewers and merchandise buyers are automatically going to switch over to the Giants. For one thing, there’s already some overlap between the two fan bases – people watching both teams on TV. For another thing, if the A’s leave a lot of their fans will resent the Giants and either stop watching MLB on TV, watch the A’s from afar, or pick another team to support.
    .
    You stated “The Giants throw 30M in and A’s get 30M out. That means from the naked eye this should not be a 2-team market.” Your numbers may or may not be correct, but regardless, your conclusion does not logically follow from your premise. From a business standpoint, MLB wants the A’s where they will generate the most additional revenue for MLB. The comparison is therefore, “How much additional revenue could the A’s bring in in another market,” versus “How much additional revenue could the A’s bring in in San Jose, after offsetting the incremental revenue the Giants coult realize if the A’s left?”
    .
    I can see how the math MIGHT work out to favor an A’s move if, and only if, there was another city out there ready to build them a publicly-financed ballpark (and maybe not even then). However, there is no sign whatsoever that this is the case. Clandestine discussions with a prospective buyer are possible; clandestine discussions that could result on a commitment for $500 million that MLB could rely on are far less likely.
    .
    Silicon Valley is one of the richest corporate markets in the country, and an order of magnitude greater than any currently vacant MLB market. It’s hard to imagine credible numbers that would make MLB better off revenue-wise moving the team under present circumstances.

  83. @bartleby

    Great post. Completely logical.

    Any possible location outside the bay area – San Antonio, Portland, Charlotte, could not even come close to the corporate base, and potential revenue for the A’s and MLB, as San Jose / Santa Clara county.

    That fact alone makes a move outside the bay area very unlikely, even if the A’s out of the bay area means some more revenue for the Giants.

    Like you said, there really wouldn’t be more stadium revenue for the Giants (a sell out is a sell out – maybe ticket prices could get a slight bump), and TV revenue would only receive a slight bump – there is already overlap, and most A’s fans, who aren’t already Giants fans also, probably would not jump on with the Giants. For me, no way would I get on board with the Giants. I would still follow the A’s from afar (after all, I’ll still have the River Cats), and then I would root for the Dodgers, Padres, and Diamondbacks – all to screw the Giants.

    No, the A’s out of the Bay Area would not be a huge revenue bump for the Giants. Slight at best.

  84. Sid,
    Im beginning to think that as a Giants fan you really want the A’s to leave the Bay Area (under the guise of wanting them to move to SJ). Nothing else could explain your imaginary facts, numbers and logic. (Respectfully)

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