Two Oakland-related items for this afternoon. The Trib thinks someone needs to pinch hit for Mayor Dellums if the A’s are to stay in town, and I agree. Dellums isn’t exactly the most proactive guy out there, and the City needs some who can work the system and has some passion for the cause. Naturally, the Trib drops the name of Ignacio De La Fuente. I’m certain that De La Fuente can broker a deal. Can he broker a good deal? That’s the question. It’s not an indictment of IDLF, rather it’s a matter of whether or not the resources will be there to see it through.
Fresh from the rumor mill (via Scott Sabatini’s Examiner article) is Zennie Abraham’s suggestion that Lew Wolff was almost fired when the Fremont plan failed, and that he’s now on a short leash. I agree with the second part more than the first, as many of Wolff’s wounds from the past several weeks have been entirely self-inflicted. Enough to fire him? I doubt it. What’s certain is that Lew will have to tighten things up to get through the San Jose labyrinth. And if he can’t, I’m pretty sure he’s gone. He was brought in to get a ballpark deal done, and if it can’t get done there’s not much purpose in having him around, is there? College frat buddy friendships only go so far. In the rest of Zennie’s post he mentions redevelopment and stimulus funds. Please Zennie – don’t go there! That’s not change we can believe in.
If you have 20 minutes or so, check out Zennie’s recently posted video on the Coliseum ballpark plan. The plan itself had to be “dusted off” as it hasn’t been touched in a few years, but the concepts haven’t changed. You’ll notice the name Chris De Benedetti, the former ANG reporter who’s now on the Mayor’s Stadium Task Force. I find that fascinating, as former Merc reporter Barry Witt, who worked the San Jose/Santa Clara stadium beat, now works for the City of San Jose.