SF Giants buy controlling stake of SJ Giants

The SF Giants bought a 25% share of the SJ Giants just as the 2009 regular season started. Now they are upping the ante by buying another 30% of the junior club, thus giving them a controlling stake in the High-A team. From Andrew Baggarly:

Baer said the Giants completed the transaction in June, adding a 30 percent stake to the 25 percent they agreed to buy in April 2009. He said little would change in the day-to-day management of the club, but the Giants would seize the opportunity to use the affiliate as a “testing ground for pilot projects” related to marketing as well as player development.

Baer denied that the investment is a reaction to efforts by the A’s to challenge their territorial rights to Santa Clara County. But if Major League Baseball’s ownership overturns those rights and allows the A’s to relocate there, the Giants’ interest in the San Jose club would provide an additional legal barrier. Minor league clubs must be compensated when they are forced to move.

Sure, Larry, it has absolutely nothing to do with the A’s. Looks like the folks at Progress Sports Management have decided to cash out, while the big club is readying itself for an even feistier defense of T-rights, or an even bigger payoff of its own.

A “testing ground for pilot projects” related to marketing? What would those pilot projects be? Expanded merchant nights? Radio and TV ads? Players going door-to-door? Keep in mind that the planned March election, if it occurs, would happen just prior to the start of the 2011 season – but also in the midst of spring training. That could give the Giants plenty of time to assert their “San Jose-ness,” whatever that means. Regionality strikes again.

As for further capital improvements to Muni, the question has to be asked, What were the SF Giants doing the last decade while Muni was going to hell? Do they honestly think they can broker some kind of deal? Or is it perhaps a consolation if T-rights are upheld? No matter what, San Jose is beyond settling for a consolation prize. I’ll paraphrase what they’re saying:

Baer/Neukom: We’re so sorry that you’re not allowed to have a major league team in your city. Really, it’s not our fault, we just have a “contract” and we need to uphold it. But while we’re talking, let me give you this watch, see it’s a real Rolex set of improvements to your tiny little Single-A ballpark. It’s a token of our appreciation. There now. Happy? Okay, gotta go.

I’m getting a beer.

Update 9:57 PM – In the comments, Sam S. points out that his household was pushpolled tonight. Lovely.

Question 1: Do you support an initiative for a new A’s stadium?

Question 2: Would you still support it if you knew that public money was being used for it at a time where there isn’t enough money for schools and public utilities.

I love this game?

18 thoughts on “SF Giants buy controlling stake of SJ Giants

  1. Giants are just looking to add a little more “compensation” to the package the A’s will eventually be paying them. Nothing more (particularly if we don’t see the Giants actually invest in any of their other minor league teams). In the meantime the SJ Giants and their fans will be given a slightly better lot in life with the improvements to Muni for their final years there before the A’s arrive.

  2. @Dan–seems to me that the SJ supporters are underestimating the game that the gints are playing–given that we have a commissioner that struggles to make even the most obvious of decisions–these additional distractions only serve to further complicate the decision for him—his belief is that by waiting and the solution will ultimately present itself is playing right into the gints hands…who once again have one primary objective–A’s out of the Bay Area–no amount of proposed compensation for the rights to SJ would be great enough when compared to having the entire Bay Area to themselves—FOREVER…. Jeffrey’s assessment of Oakland’s efforts is right on—-obstruct and wait…obsturct and wait….nothing pro-active as it now appears that there isnt concensus on a site in Oakland…again….and any Oakland only proponent who believes that the gints are working with Oakland to keep the A’s in the city of Oakland are being used as a pawn in the real game of chess going on between the gints and MLB–

  3. I agree with Dan. They just want to be able to get 30% larger chunk of compensation when the SJ Giants are forced to move. It’s a great business decision.

  4. Well, not 30% larger. An extra 30% share of the total compensation.

  5. GoA’s,
    Respectfully: I think your way overestimating how much “power” the Giants have in this A’s/San Jose debate. Again, MLB’s Anti-Trust Exemption and MLB’s Constitution: which gives the commissioner ultimate power in decision making and allow for the “best interest of baseball” clause. Remember, no lawsuits allowed within “The Lodge.” And we’ve already discussed ad naseum why a “decision” hasn’t been presented yet by the “BRC.” No need to get into that again. Bottom line: Selig IS in charge, not Neukom/Giants.

    As for the Single A “Lil” Giants of San Jose, they’re extremely miniscule in the grand scheme of things. Single A playing in a venue that seats 4,000, with no radio or TV. San Jose’s current “pro baseball team” currently plays teams from towns like Lodi for Christ sake! IMHO, it really doesn’t matter if the “Big” Giants have a 50% or 100% stake in their little Single A affiliate. Bottom line is that when MLB announces their decision on the A’s/SJ, the “Lil” Giants won’t stand in the way of it.

    On a related note, I have a question: would the SJ Giants HAVE to move when the A’s come to San Jose? I think I remember Wolff saying something to the likes that they wouldn’t have to relocate. Again, in a region with over 2 million in a 20-mile radius, you’re talking about 4,000 or so Single A Giants fans. It really shouldn’t matter if they moved or stayed in SJ after the A’s. I know there are minor league teams playing in the shared territories of LA and NYC; I say just leave the “Lil” Giants in the shared territory that could become Santa Clara County.

    I think I’m going to get a beer to R.M., but for a negative reason…DAMN RAIDERS!

  6. @Tony D–we will see in the next 45-60 days about TR and BS leadership which, regardless of the power he can wield he has chosen not to do so to-date. If BS punts again on the SJ vote again in March—while you think I am overestimating the TR issue all I can tell you isthe level of frustration for the A’s is pretty significant—and it has nothing to do with what the BRC recommendation is because we all know what that is….

    • @Tony D–we will see in the next 45-60 days about TR and BS leadership which, regardless of the power he can wield he has chosen not to do so to-date. If BS punts again on the SJ vote again in March—while you think I am overestimating the TR issue all I can tell you isthe level of frustration for the A’s is pretty significant—and it has nothing to do with what the BRC recommendation is because we all know what that is….

      I respect your opinion greatly GoA’s, but again, if we’re now seeing an “Opening Day 2015,” why would the next 45-60 days matter? And if Wolff is so “frustrated” with his ole frat bro, why did he just donate millions to a U of Wisconsin scholarship in Bud’s name? Heck, why did he “waste” his time hiring 360 full-time, release SJ renderings, and sign-off on a show of support from the SVLG? By the way, Neukom/Giants have sure been rather silent on the news of the past month; I think things are proceeding just as planned. Now, time for that “Commitment to Excellence” Blue Moon!

  7. @Tony D- I didn’t say that the A’s were giving up—in fact they are turning up the volume to try and see if they can get BS to move because the red flag is up that the guy just can’t make a decision…and understand–360 has been involved for quite awhile–these renderings just didn’t happen and the actual design for the ballpark in SJ is much further along than you might think. While 2015 may be the date due to a variety of factors (Autumn Pkwy extension, acquisition of remaining parcels, litigation which will happen regardless) the A’s need a firm direction so they can set the fund raising efforts into full tilt–keep in mind that the ‘9ers stadium approved already–isn’t expected to open until 2014—

  8. “Litigation that will happen regardless.”. Off the SJ Giants topic, but that quote from you GoA’s is exactly why I’ve always felt there should be no voter referendum for a ballpark in SJ.
    Voter approval of a sports facility in SJ is only required if direct taxpayer monies go into actual construction of said facility.
    Since the ballpark will be privately financed, voter approval isn’t technically necessary.
    Alas, for some reason the City of SJ will put this to the voters, and lawsuit (frivolous at that) should follow anyway?

  9. @Tony D–litigation that will happen regardless refers to wherever a ballpark is built in California—there will always be some group that will file a lawsuit–California policies make the EIR an easy target…from my perspective the vote is necessary to show public support and that element will be fine–the polling results are overwhelming in favor….

    as Larrry Stone said there is no competition between Oakland and SJ and Jeffries post yesterday confirms this—but there is a huge battle over TR and to assume that BS will make the obvious and right decision would assume that he possesses strong leadership skills…

  10. Some day they’ll build a new wing in Cooperstown devoted to “Architects renderings” of stadiums that never got built. Fremont’s Cisco Field will undoubetdly be there, will San Jose’s be there too?

  11. A bit off topic, but my house was just push polled by a robotic polling company.

    Question 1: Do you support an initiative for a new A’s stadium?

    Question 2: Would you still support it if you knew that public money was being used for it at a time where there isn’t enough money for schools and public utilities.

    Between the Giants buying a controlling share in the SJ Giants, and now this, it seems Neukem wont be going quietly.

  12. Gah, I hate polls like that. They are poisoning the people’s minds with that second question.

  13. I know. If you were a lay person you’d thing the city was taking away money from school children to build the stadium. I thought there was a promise from Selig that Neukem wouldn’t get in the way of a ballot vote.

  14. Neukom has one objective—getting the A’s out of the Bay Area–so far BS has not been able to stand up to him–BS is being taken for a ride by both Neukom and the city of Oakland stall tactics and thus far he has shown he has no idea how to manage it—

  15. What is suprising to me is that BS has allowed the gints to continue with these push polls to go on while the situation in Florida is not the way MLB wants to be viewed–in essense the question that Sam identified above would make just about every voters stomache turn–

  16. We don’t know for certain that it’s the Giants. It could simply be someone from Oakland trying to sour the people, or some NIMBY in SJ. Either way, it appears that it was created to muddy the truth.

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