Purdy gets upset while York gets real

It was about the right time to read some righteous indignation from the Merc’s Mark Purdy, and in today’s edition he serves it up. He goes on the attack against the Astroturf citizens group and SF City Attorney Dennis Herrera. The biggest salvos are saved for the parent club, what Purdy calls the “Fraidy-Giants.”

The angle I had thought about before was money. Purdy points out that Larry Baer and the husband of Giants VP of Communications, Staci Slaughter, both contributed money to Herrera’s campaign. For that they got a nice piece of sabre-rattling. From that the San Jose boosters, who have been quietly raising money up to this point, will only be more motivated to raise even more money for the ballpark efforts. It won’t take much appearance of meddling from the city up north to get it started, so congratulations, Dennis Herrera and the Giants.

As for the little Giants, Purdy tries to dispel the oft-held belief that the team would be forced to move.

And here’s the worst part: The “coalition” is also allowing the false belief to spread that the San Jose Giants would be forced to leave town if the A’s move here. Not true. Under baseball rules, if the A’s move to the South Bay, owner Lew Wolff and Major League Baseball would have the option of asking the San Jose Giants to stay or go. However, Wolff stated a year ago that he had no intention of forcing the minor league team to leave town, saying it would be the decision of Weyermann and his owners. Wolff has frequently reiterated this stance.

What Purdy doesn’t mention is that the team will get some kind of compensation whether they move or not, and the compensation will be greater if they have to move. It’s not a matter of the SJ Giants being forced to leave town, it’s whether or not they have more lucrative options in the future. I have written in the past that the Giants would be forced out, but perhaps T-rights could be redrawn in a way that keeps the SJ Giants at Muni. I just don’t see it as realistic. Right now, grassroots groups are forming to craft proposals to lure the SJ Giants to another part of the Bay Area.

Update: The Merc’s Internal Affairs column describes a brief encounter between Larry Baer and Santa Clara County Assessor Larry Stone, a longtime proponent of bringing MLB to the South Bay.

Stone said he told him the team’s fate was up to Selig, to which Baer replied, “The commissioner will never rescind those rights.”

“I said, ‘Oh, really?’ ” recalled Stone, who asked Baer why Selig would appoint a committee to study all the options for the A’s if he wasn’t prepared to let the team move to San Jose.

Baer countered that the panel was appointed solely to study options for the A’s in the East Bay, outside of the Giants’ territorial rights. “And I said, ‘That’s funny, because just last week the panel and consultants were meeting with the mayor of San Jose and staff from the redevelopment agency and looking at the potential site in San Jose,’ ” Stone recalled. He added that Baer seemed surprised by the news and walked away.

Over in Santa Clara, Jed York has made the 49ers officially the “bigger man,” by publicly admitting that Oakland would be a good relocation option if the Santa Clara stadium plan fails. When it comes down to a new stadium it gets complex. Sure, the infrastructure is there, but the ideal site within the complex is the existing Coliseum, which might mean that the old girl would have to be demolished to build anew. Frankly, if the two teams don’t explore a rebuilt Coliseum option, they’re both foolish. The public contribution is already there, and it would be much easier to get justification for additional redevelopment funds if they were for the purpose of having both teams in house. Combined, I think it could pass muster as the NFL’s required public contribution, which at this point is the biggest hurdle for getting anything done – regardless of city.

31 thoughts on “Purdy gets upset while York gets real

  1. Would the Oakland-only fans be happy if they keep the Raiders, get the 49ers, and lose the A’s?

  2. Oakland Athletic fans would not be happy if the Oakland Athletics ceased to exist. Also, the Forty Niners would still remain San Francisco’s team playing in Oakland. Much like they would remain San Francisco’s team while playing in Santa Clara. Oakland would still have one football team and one baseball team.

    • So Nav—following this logic—-sounds like you are cool with the Raiders moving to Santa Clara—

      • Well, the Raiders fanbase is in the East Bay, so going to Santa Clara wouldn’t make much sense. The Forty Niners moving 10 miles East of San Francisco and remaining San Francisco’s team, isn’t that big of a deal. I don’t mind the teams sharing a stadium which is convenient to both of their fanbases. Also, would the Raiders remain the Oakland Raiders if they moved to Santa Clara? That would also influence my opinion.

      • Nav–you have no freaking idea how many of the raiders fan base lives in Silicon Valley v. the East Bay—so for you to say it doesn’t make much sense for the Raiders to locate to Santa Clara is ridiculous—and you proved my point—your not a fan of the Raiders–nor the A’s—your a advocate for Oakland–

      • Go A’s, I didn’t realize that Silicon Valley was a bastion of Raider support. I’ve always thought that Raider Country was Alameda and Contra Costa counties. I’m sure there could be a few Raider fans in Silicon Valley .

    • Gotta admit this surprises me a lot. Hard for me to believe that no one in the Giants organization knew the panel was meeting with SJ. Something doesn’t sound right.

      • FC–look at the timeframe—the meeting referred to occured 6 weeks ago–right around the 1st meeting between the BRP and San Jose—Baer/gints no longer are suprised—now they are worried—which is why all of the bogus activity over the past week–

      • Yeah that’s what I thought, but then it all seems too simple. The Giants have a pretty bright front office. Really hard to understand why they wouldn’t have known about this earlier. If in fact the Giants were in the dark about the meetings, maybe it would have been better for Stone to have remained silent. Why tip them off and allow them to put together a plan of attack.

    • That’s quite a fan club Mr. Stone has based on the Merc reader comments.

      • I grew up in Sunnyvale, and he did an excellent job as mayor. He’s in his fourth term as assessor and it’s hard to ding him for his work there. People these days ding him for not reassessing their properties quickly enough. That’s fine, I’d rather the county not face further budget cuts.

      • This is ethical? To tax people unfair amounts so the government can continue to spend beyond it’s means?

      • I got my reassessment within the year. Lesser of two evils, TPS. Of course, I wouldn’t expect you to comment on Stone’s actual record since you know next to nothing about him.

  3. “The angle I had thought about before was money. Purdy points out that Larry Baer and the husband of Giants VP of Communications, Staci Slaughter, both contributed money to Herrera’s campaign. For that they got a nice piece of sabre-rattling.”

    It’s pretty amazing what $750 dollars can buy you these days.

    • That sabre-rattling could bring more potential contributors from the Giants out of the woodwork. Would he be so “proactive” in looking out for the Giants’ interests if there wasn’t already interest in him?

  4. By law the max donation is $500—the fact that there is an association at all between the 4 of them with a pointless letter written by Herrera supporting the claims of gints is what is ridiculous

    • $250 each from 3 people, and you’re suggesting a corrupt “association”? I suppose Lew Wolff never makes political contributions, and has no inside relationships in San Jose City Hall?

      • I wouldn’t say “corrupt” as much as “cynically transparent.” It is no coincidence, that is a pretty good bet. It is some what amusing that Herrera tries to play it off as if they aren’t related and the Giants officials try the same.

  5. I’m of the opinion that the Giants see the handwriting on the wall. What they’re really interested in at this point is maximizing leverage for compensation. They damn well know that over the long haul an A’s franchise located in SJ is going to erode their fan base from the area. Quite frankly, a franchise with a history of success such as the A’s suddenly having the resources to capitalize on their brain trust must send shivers down the spines of Giants execs. All in all, the Giants better find themselves an “A” game to bring to the table or they’re going to have a rough go for the next few years or so.

    • Jeff–I personally don’t think that near term there will be that much of an impact in the fan base demographics for the Bay Area–allegiances are in place–and most will continue to honor those—its really the next generation where things will change—kids grow up supporting their local team–over the next 10 years the gints reach into the East Bay will increase and the A’s fan base in the South Bay and surrounding communities will increase—-

  6. Just a minute Jeff. That’s Oakland Athletic history you’re trying to co-op. That history belongs to the Oakland Athletics. Unless Mr. Wolff is intent on keeping the name Oakland Athletics, you’re going to have to start all over again with the “whatever” A’s. Oakland Athletics history isn’t to be put on a trailer and dragged all over Northern California. Rickey Henderson, Catfish Hunter, Vida Blue, Rollie Fingers, and Reggie Jackson never played in San Jose. Those World Series trophies say “Oakland Athletics” on them. You don’t want the name “Oakland” you don’t get the “Oakland” history.

    • The traditional follows the team and not the city—the pennants will be hanging in the new ballpark of the Athletics—and if that happens to be in San Jose—so be it—

    • I’m afraid you do Navigator. If you’ll pay careful attention the next time you’re at the Coliseum, you’ll note that there are 5 World Series victories highlighted in blue. Those belong to the Philadelphia Athletics. The A’s packed them up and toted them over to Oakland via a short stint in KC. They still count in the win column.

  7. Hey R.M.,
    Over the Summer or a few months back, I believe you had an audio clip of a Larry Baer interview where he said something to the likes of “Look, we’re not trying to block anything (A’s move to SJ), and it will be MLB who finally makes a decision on the territorial rights.” I remember it was in response to an East Bay caller who was sick of hearing about the G’s TRights and their opposition to the A’s in SJ. Mr. Baer seems to be singing a different tune now (?). Oh well.

    I agree with most here that all this Giants nonsense is about leverage for compensation. Isn’t this is all starting to sound a lot like the Expos/Nationals/Orioles saga all over again (Angelos threatening to sue, bla bla bla), with the main difference being one team trying to move further away from another; not a team moving INTO the region from afar.

    Here’s some food for thought: some Oakland-only partisans say the A’s shouldn’t move to San Jose because the heart of their fanbase is in the East Bay. The Giants claim that the heart of their fanbase is located in SJ/SC County, yet the ballpark is located 40 miles up the road in SF. It’s obvious that AT&T Park is located nowhere near the Giants fanbase in SJ/SC, so what’s wrong with Cisco Field being built in downtown San Jose, south of the A’s supposed fanbase in Alameda Co.? Just asking!

  8. Tony D = Mark P = SJ Homer Delusional

  9. Howard S.–Recent comments by John Chambers of Cisco indicate that they are anything but delusional–when asked about Cisco Fields in downtown SJ he said that the odds were pretty good–considering he is forking out more than $100M over the term of the agreement I would say he is probably a pretty good source—

    So lets see–Navigator=Zennie=Howard S.= Oakland Homer….not A’s fans

  10. GoA’s = Tony D = Mark P = know-nothing losers.

    • HS—wow—tough talk—and backed up by so many facts—guess you should add Chambers to your equation—of course I doubt you know who he is—

      Taken from an interview in this weeks Silicon Valley Biz Journal:

      MM: Let’s change gears. I would like to ask whether we have a chance of seeing a Cisco Stadium with a Major League Baseball team in San Jose.

      JC: We want the South Bay to have the A’s. We think it’s important for creating an environment for our children. Not only is it about education, because clearly it is, but it’s about job creation and an environment that will attract companies and individuals to this area. Having sports teams in the South Bay is an element of that, and we very much want to see the A’s here. So we are trying very hard. I think it’s pretty good odds that it will happen.

  11. well if Chambers says he hopes it happens, it must be a fact …

    GoA’s = delusional know-nothing loser (Tony D’s little loser brother)

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