Press Release War: The Aftermath

Well, nobody in a position of power took my advice. Oh well. In fact, just as I was heading out to lunch and my left front tire blew out, I received an email announcement that Coliseum JPA board President Nate Miley and Vice President Larry Reid would have a media availability session at 12:25, right before the start of the final game of the homestand. The session was accompanied by another press release, claiming among other things that the A’s want a large annual subsidy and still owe five years of back rent at the Coliseum:

Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Authority Issues Statement Regarding Oakland Athletics 10 Year Lease Proposal Negotiations

Authority committed to keeping baseball at O.co Coliseum but concerned about serious issues that could harm taxpayers

OAKLAND, CA – Today, the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Authority issued a statement regarding negotiations with Oakland Athletics on a ten year lease to remain at O.co Coliseum. The Authority remains committed to working with the Athletics; however, they believe there are pressing issues that must be addressed as negotiations continue.

“Yesterday, the Authority made an offer to keep the Athletics at O.co Coliseum that safeguarded city and county taxpayers while addressing the team’s concerns. Unfortunately, it took less than a few hours for them to reject that offer. Despite this, we are still committed to negotiating a fair deal,” said Coliseum Authority Chairman Nate Miley, who serves as an Alameda County Supervisor.

Among the issues cited by the Authority are that the Oakland Athletics owe the City and County more than $5 million because they have not been paying their rent for over five years. While the team is asking that this debt be written off, the Authority insists that this money could be used for public purposes such has hiring more police officers or funding public health services.

Additionally, the Athletics are demanding that the Authority give the team rent subsidies of $3.5 million per year. This is despite the team being an MLB franchise with a market value of nearly $1 billion.

“We look forward to addressing these issues and are committed to negotiations,” stated Oakland Councilmember and Coliseum Authority Vice-chair Larry Reid. “We agree with the A’s that they should stay for at least ten years, and we are staying at the bargaining table. We look forward to continued discussions and to coming to an agreement on a mutually beneficial lease.”

The Authority added that it wants to keep baseball in Oakland, and a ten year extension, lasting through the 2024 season, gives the Athletics a place to a call home and fans an opportunity to cheer a great team.

That was followed up during the game by A’s President Michael Crowley, who refuted the back rent allegation:

Statement by A’s President Michael Crowley Regarding Today’s Announcement by the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Authority

“First, we owe no back rent or any other amounts. We did deduct rent payments in the past for items that we are allowed under our lease, but that was our negotiated right.

Second, there is absolutely nothing in either our lease offer to them or their counter proposal to us that mentions any kind of subsidy. In fact, under our final offer we would immediately invest no less than $10 million in the facility and our rent would rise from the amounts that we have paid over the last decade.

We have nothing additional to offer and as a result there will be no further negotiations.”

Of course, all of this happened as I was changing a tire and switching out a rental car at Hertz, so I wasn’t able to factcheck right away. Eventually I got back to my laptop and took a look at the JPA’s annual financial statements, which are a matter of public record. The 2013 report isn’t available, but the previous years’ versions are, and it took a quick look to figure out who was right. See for yourself, from the 2012 report:

jpa-revenue_2012

Accounting of revenues and expenses for the JPA’s 2012 fiscal year

See that line item named Athletics Rent? Sure looks like a payment of $1.1 million to me. Same goes for 2011. And Crowley’s right that the A’s have the right to deduct maintenance items – such as patching up concrete leaks or fixing plumbing issues – but it appears they haven’t done that for a while. The 2011 report even acknowledges the A’s rent payment. From page 6:

  • Lease revenue increased $225 (thousand) or 10 percent primarily due to rent revenue from the Oakland Athletics because of an increase in the rent for the last fiscal year.

What I think happened is that the JPA is conflating the parking fee matter with rent. In 2009, the City of Oakland enacted an 18.5% parking tax at the Coliseum, which the A’s withheld but chose not to pay while it was determined if such a tax was enforceable (it was). As part of the most recent lease extension through 2015, the A’s and the JPA chose to use arbitration to determine the final payout by the A’s. Again, that tax started collection in 2009, which might explain why the JPA thinks the issue goes back five years. (Update: An ABC 7 report indicates that the JPA sees the “rent” matter going to arbitration in June. That’s when the parking revenue matter is expected to go to arbitration.)

Assuming that others factcheck this properly, the JPA will be forced to walk back this goof the same way the City of Oakland has several other allegations. Now do you see why it’s a bad idea to negotiate in the press?

The worst part is that Miley revealed that the JPA has been in talks with Lew Wolff about a Coliseum land deal, one that presumably would supersede the Coliseum City project once that plan hits its probable demise.

I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for that land proposal, Supervisor Miley. From the sound of Crowley’s comment, sure seems like the JPA is getting the silent treatment for the immediate future.

66 thoughts on “Press Release War: The Aftermath

  1. Land proposal? What’s going on here?…I trust what Crowley says more than what Oakland and JPA say

  2. The land proposal could have been as followed:

    JPA: Would you like to buy the land?
    A’s: No.
    JPA: Okay.

    They said *they* were talking to the A’s about land deal. That doesn’t mean the A’s were listening.

  3. So once again Oakland gets caught in a bald faced lie… shocker. Problem for the A’s is the damage is done. The JPA and city can say any inane bullshit they want right now about the A’s and Wolff and the masses jump on it as fact, and of course conveniently miss the inevitable retraction. Leaving the A’s looking like schmucks while the city gets away with their lies more or less scott free.

  4. “This is despite the team being an MLB franchise with a market value of nearly $1 billion.”

    Hope any retraction includes a correction on that number.

  5. I don’t think the land deal is that cut and dry. The mention of public financing is interesting.
    .
    There was also some info about the Raiders Coliseum City phantom stadium yesterday.
    .
    My belief is that the JPA, the Raiders, the Prince of Dubai and Colony Capital all looked at the $1B, 50k seat, $120M phantom football stadium and, in their own way, realized the inevitable.
    .
    For the JPA that means trying to get something done at the Coliseum with the A’s.

  6. $120M in tax money potentially available for a Raiders stadium is what I meant in the previous comment.

  7. KTVU, of course, reflexively did an “A’s are bad guys” report for all the low information folks out there.

  8. Could be Jeffrey, seems like something has changed at least perceptively from JPA side or perhaps from Colony. I am just not sure what the bomb throwing is all about? And A’s pr folks are not smart.

  9. @ Jeffrey
    Yeah I agree, I think all involved looked at the Raiders situation and said “Hay can we even do this?” makes me wonder if Mark will give up the good fight (if that’s even true), and just sale to LA interest become a minority owner sit in a nice luxury box, and as the cameras pan in his direction while behind tented glass, he can hold on to the belief, that he continues to be relevant.
    The A’s at the coliseum is much more doable, but it’s not exactly the most attractive solution, and certainly not the one Lew Wolff was hoping for.

  10. It would be frustrating that for all the years of pain and struggle the A’s remain stuck. But, unfortunately, they’re not the dominant team in the region.

  11. @Jeffrey- agree with your assessment but why did the JPA decide to trash the A’s publicly if they now realize they make the most economic sense to retain- that makes absolutely no sense whatsoever- not that any of this did before 🙂

  12. @ GoA’s
    I am so with you, this just makes no sense.

  13. Nothing has made sense. Not since Roberto Alomar hit a 9th inning home run off the Eck on October 11th, 1992. It’s been 20 years of foraging in the wilderness…

  14. My data point for the world turning upside down was gibson’s hr of Eck in the 88 ws- guess I’m older :). Seriously, with the way the JPA has handled this in the media I would be inclined to say they are trying to force the A’s out- I.e- you say you want out so we don’t have to do it and can focus only on keeping the Raiders- rather than we feel you are our best hope of staying. Has the JPA issued a correction to their press release?

  15. The JPA is desperate and it shows in multiple ways.

    -The Warriors are going to leave for sure as Mission Bay will be far easier to build. The Warriors are going to owe 62M to pay of debt service for Oracle when they leave and have stated they won’t pay it….Lawsuit OTW.

    -JPA still owes a boatload of money on Mt. Davis and the Raiders let the deadline pass like it was nothing.

    -On the same day they offer the A’s a 10 year agreement they have been looking for?

    Was it coincidence they offered the A’s a 10 year agreement the same day as the Warriors announcement and Raiders lack of one?

    No, they have been sitting on the offer for months but just now decided lets take a stab at it with the A’s to “save face” to show they are trying in some fashion….Typical Oakland Pols move.

    The issue with the A’s is the JPA/Oakland wants them to commit to a new ballpark in Oakland that is privately finance and the A’s want no part of it as they know Oakland is not feasible with the Raiders sitting on top of their heads still.

    If your Wolff you need take a wait and see approach, why?

    -If San Jose wins their lawsuit he can give Oakland the big finger and jump for joy as he will have gotten his dream location after years of torment and unfair play by MLB/Giants….This is option 1 and will be until the lawsuit is over.

    -If the Raiders leave, he can step on Oakland/JPA’s throats and force them to pay for infrastructure costs of a new stadium and keep the lion’s share of revenue from adjacent development. This is option 2 and only works if SJ is still in play.

    -If San Jose loses their lawsuit, then Wolff needs to sit back and decide what to do next regardless of the Raiders and the JPA. In this case, he has no leverage and has to think of what to do next with MLB.

    Leverage is key here for Wolff, he has to take a wait and see approach because of the SJ lawsuit. The JPA is desperate and it shows clearly.

  16. @sid- agree on overall assessment- haven’t heard anything about lawsuit- all the pundits (TK, RR etc) don’t even mention it as they proclaim SJ is dead-

  17. I forgot to mention, Option 2 only works if MLB allows the A’s to stay on revenue sharing indefinitely and if SJ is still in play so Wolff has leverage on the JPA.

  18. @GoA’s- TK and RR are morons when it comes to Sports Business. Why? Because they are sports writers who work for the media. Not businessmen in any sense of the word.

    RR like TK though Santa Clara was a dream that would never happen for the 49ers. They are “traditionalists” and believe the Giants have a legitimate argument for holding SJ hostage when in reality they do not.

  19. The JPA is in cover their ass mode, plain and simple. Why attack the A’s? Because they’re easy. Fans and people in Oakland already hate Wolff and blame him for their situation. Suddenly they both lose the Warriors AND fail to receive the letter from Raiders. They need something to distract their voter base: pick a fight with the A’s. They know nothing they say or do will make them look bad to that base as long as it looks like they’re taking action to keep them (as erroneous is it may be) and as long as it makes Wolff look bad they know they can get people to believe it. To the JPA, this a cheap win, one that to all those that matter to them will be an easy distraction from their ongoing failures.

  20. So after the A’s turned down their offer, The Coliseum Authority comes out and starts accusing the A’s of owing back rent and that the A’s are demanding subsidies. That sounds so childish on their part. It’s like they got their feelings hurt and are lashing out in public, instead of re-negotiating. Of course as others have mentioned, the comments from some of the Newspaper sites are painting the Wolff/A’s as the bad guys. It would be nice to see the actual terms, but can imagine that all of the A’s concerns were not met.

  21. And MLB/Selig force the A’s to endure this treatment by their landlords by confining them to their current territory, where no one has been able to get a new stadium built for 20 years.

  22. @dmoas – you are giving the JPA too much credit. Clearly they have no clue what they are doing. These are desperate acts of desperate people. Grasping at straws.

    Anyone know BS’s email address?

  23. Does anyone know what the timetable is on the A’sMLB lawsuit? I know a hearing is supposed to happen in Los Angeles in May….but then what? The way the injustice system works in this country, that suit may be tied up in court for years; and the A’s probably would like some kind of resolution soon, probably within the next year.

    In addition, I have not read one article or comment rearding MLB’s screwed up salary and revenue structure and how that impacts teams like the A’s. If MLB had and NFL style salary cap, maybe they would be able to keep home-grown talent, compete payroll wise and thrive in Oakland. A new stadium does not guarantee winning….just ask the Pittbugh Pirates…..one winning season since 2001, when their new stadium opened.

    If the NFL had a MLB style salary and revenue structure, the Green Bay Packers would move to LA tomorrow.

  24. Sid, Agree with your post above(9:38),especially the first part. the timing of this offer was not a coincidence. Thanks for pointing that out. Makes sense.

  25. Thought this was tangentially related to why the press doesn’t ever seem to give two shits what the A’s POV is when these things come up.

    http://blog.sfgate.com/stew/2014/04/24/no-bay-area-zip-code-has-more-as-than-giants-fans/?cmpid=hp-hc-sports

    Looks like no one are A’s fans anymore. At least not enough to care. What was really shocking is that stat showing that in the Coliseum’s own neighborhood only 18% of people are A’s fans while over 50% root for the Giants. Makes me wonder if it isn’t time to just throw in the towel and move the A’s somewhere they can build a solid fanbase and corporate base. because I’m not even sure San Jose will be able to tip the scales enough.

  26. @Sid You summed it up nicely, I agree (like others), for the most part,but as you know TK.and RR. Are not the only ones that think the lawsuit is facing long odds, there are people without an ax to grind who are reasonable that fill this way.

  27. I just wonder if there is beginning to be more vocalized behind the scenes dissent within the MLB Lodge to what has been transpiring in Oakland. Hopefully, some individual MLB team owners will finally have the guts to, at least behind closed doors, come forth and blame MLB for creating and perpetuating this mess of a situation for its Oakland franchise.

  28. @ Dan:

    Somewhere is SJ. Frisco is scared shitless of that. I doubt that the A’s can pack them in even with a new stadium @ CC , VC or HT or @ JQ’s house.

  29. daniel, I don’t think the A’s would pack them in down in San Jose either. There’s just no balance in the Bay Area between the two teams anymore. It’s as bad as NYC with the Yankees and Mets, but at least in that instance the sample size is 4x as great so the Mets are still the favorite of a large number of folks. The Bay Area just doesn’t care about the A’s anymore. And I’m starting to wonder if any ballpark will fix that enough to make it worth their while, particularly given that SJ, HT, or CC will all be privately funded. And sure people can say, “corporate dollars” all they want. But corporate dollars aren’t automatic. If people still aren’t buying the A’s product, what incentive do corporate entities have to want to be associated with them? No eyeballs seeing their buying into the A’s (suites, ads, etc…), no point in buying in.

  30. @ IIpec
    It would be nice if someone did.

  31. @ Dan:

    You are wrong. The A’s will be able to draw fans from Morgan Hill, Hollister, south of SJ, west of the Bay Bridge, Fremont etc… Same as the Sharks. When SJ Mayor Tom McEnery was trying to get the Sharks to SJ, people did not believe it would work but he did not give up. Trust me, it will work for the A’s in SJ.

    Plus the A’s will get major corp support from SJ/Silicon Valley. Huge. They don’t have to sell out every game.

  32. MLB considers it a supreme blessing to host an MLB team. That’s why it expects publicly funded ballparks. Wonder how much the longer the Lodge will tolerate the A’s being used as a bashing target by its host city to distract from the departure of the Warriors and the second thoughts the Raiders are having about staying. MLB has chained the A’s to Oakland so the city knows the team is not going anywhere anytime soon.

  33. @dan- if your premise was correct then the gints would have no concern- SJ would be extremely successful- the entire SV is very capable of funding sports and is showing it with sharks, ‘9ers, earthquakes success

  34. Yes, the A’s will easily fill an SJ stadium. No question.

  35. Go A’s, your premise however neglects a few facts. Earthquakes are marginally successful, but only have to fill a 10,000 seat stadium and have no local competition (nor any regional competition). They are THE soccer team for all of NorCal. The Niners too have no real local competition (the Raiders have been a negligible presence in local sports since the day they got back from LA as is evidenced by their never ending attendance woes). The Niners are THE football team in the Bay Area. The Sharks again, no local or regional competition and are THE hockey team for all of NorCal.

    The A’s on the other hand in San Jose or Oakland, are the second team. Always have been even during the few years in the late 80’s when they were the more attended team. They’ve never been THE team. And with the Giants having solidified their presence regionally over the last 15+ year, the A’s will never be THE team.

    Could they be successful in San Jose? Maybe. I’m sure some of the Giants casuals will come catch a few games out of convenience and they’d be able to attract some of Silicon Valley’s corporate money, but they’ll never be able to build a fan base in San Jose. And I’d question if they’re even capable of rebuilding their fan base in Oakland if by some strange twist of fate they stay in the east bay. We’ve all seen the data on stadium bumps, they’re not what they used to be. The A’s will undoubtedly get one, but it’ll won’t sustain like they were in the 90’s and early 2000’s. It’ll dry up after a season or two leaving Wolff holding the bill, and the A’s playing in front of 15k crowds every night. SJ or Oakland it won’t make much difference.

  36. @Dan

    Three things will help make the A’s relevant again. New leadership (not ownership), a new ballpark, and continued success on the field.

    Right now the A’s brand is at an all time low, despite the success of the team on the field. They need to bring someone in that has the PR and marketing smarts to get the organization’s image out of the shithole. Wolff needs to remove himself from the public eye. He is view by many as being the source of all the A’s problems. He needs to focus his efforts behind the scenes on getting a new ballpark built, and allow this individual to be the new fresh face of the franchise.

    In the meantime, the entire front office needs to keep their mouths’ shut until there is something positive to announce. Let the City of Oakland and the JPA spout off all they want. As ML notes, nothing is gained by these petty press releases.

    The A’s will never have a fanbase comparable to the Giants. Even a new ballpark in San Jose won’t change that. But it is possible to gain back some of the fan support which has been lost. It won’t be easy, but it’s still very possible. Heck if the LA Clippers can do it, anything is possible.

  37. @ fc:

    What the A’s need is a star player(s). They have no gate attraction right now. Sure they are winning games but people don’t come to CC to see Sonny Gray or The Cuban guy or CoCo. They used to have Canseco, Mac, Ricky, Stew, and The Eck.

    Frisco rode the big horse #25 until they won 2 WS recently. Of course, ATT park helps big time.

  38. I think Dan is might be right with some of his assessment of the different sport’s fan bases. If things don’t work out in Oakland or SJ for the A’s, I could see the team moving to Charlotte, Montreal, or back to Philadelphia. RSNs will dictate the next possible franchise relocation in MLB.

    For now the A’s are better off staying in Oakland and receiving welfare checks from MLB than moving to Portland (Seattle – Root Sports) or San Antonio (Texas Rangers – Fox Sports SW)

    Let’s not forget Philadelphia still has a love affair with the A’s, the team could repair the damage that was done in 50’s and move back to it’s AL roots. The Philly metro area could in theory support two MLB teams.

  39. Star players? The A’s had Hall of Famers in the 1970s (Catfish Hunter, Reggie Jackson) and didn’t draw, then, either. Excepting a couple years when the Raiders weren’t around and the Giants were stuck at Candlestick, the A’s have never drawn well in Oakland, even when they had what was considered a very nice baseball park (unlike the current football stadium). In 1974, the A’s won the World Series and were almost last in attendance.

  40. and if it does not work in SJ, LW and Fisher have to sell the team or move them out of here. Same as if they stay in Oakland but they will have a better chance in SJ.

    BTW, if you guys have a chance, swing by Levi’s Stadium. The grass is ready now. It is a beauty.

  41. re: Let’s not forget Philadelphia still has a love affair with the A’s,

    …The team left about 60 years ago. Having spent a lot of time in that area, I really can’t recall any remaining affection for the Philly A’s. They certainly weren’t the Brooklyn Dodgers, whose departure is lamented still.

  42. @ Dan- – guess Larry Baer is worried for nothing- and new 18,000 seat EQ stadium that is privately financed is also doing very well in the selling of suites and club seats- while this generation of fans may not switch over to SJ A’s the next generation sure would which is a big part of lb concern-

  43. @fc – the giants stink, and once the novelty of phone booth park wears out, and they continue with under .500 ball (2014 looks like a repeat of the 2013 giants) – they will slip back into their previous obscurity. They are an over-rated, over-hyped franchise.

  44. Attending Giants games is still a trendy thing to do even when the team stinks. A’s games? Notsomuch. Jerry Brown could have pushed for a downtown ballpark for the A’s that would have had thousands of people coming to downtown Oakland to drop their spare cash and more into that city. But the genius would have none of that.

  45. @duffer,

    I agree with you to a degree. The Giants were fortunate in that just as the novelty of Pac Bell started to wear off, they struck gold with a bunch of young talented players – Lincecum, Posey, Sandavol, Cain…I’d be surprised if the Giants didn’t draw in excess of 2.5 million/year for the next ten years. The combination of the ballpark and a savvy front office makes that almost a guarantee.

    For the A’s, the rules of the game are set. They cannot change the fact that the Giants are and will always be top dog in this market. KGMZ will never be a KNBR. What they can do though is through smart marketing and careful PR, grab a share of the Bay Area market back. A new ballpark would be a huge step in the right direction. However a new ballpark will not guarantee success. The team will have to make smart decisions both on and off the field. There needs to be a change in the culture.

  46. The A’s will never be the #1 team in the market even with a new ballpark in San Jose. So what? The White Sox, Mets, and Angels will never be #1 in their markets either.

    The A’s need a new ballpark to compete. Look how bad things were for the Giants when the A’s had a better ballpark 12 miles away. They almost moved twice to Toronto and Tampa Bay during that stretch.

    The A’s even got better attendance 17 of 32 years over the Giants.

    The ballpark is the #1 marketing tool for any baseball team. When you play so many games the ballpark is paramount for marketing success. The disparity between ATT Park and the O.Coliseum is so astonishing in this day and age it is down right despicable.

    You can market all day long via TV, Internet, mobile, whatever…but without a ballpark for fans to come and congregate and build spirit you cannot compete. This is why I believe MLB will lose in the 9th Circuit in the coming months.

    To restrict any entity by location is against all American spirit. America is great because anyone can come and setup shop “anywhere” regardless of what your competition is doing.

    The A’s and San Jose will have their justice. San Jose filed their final brief earlier this week. With the expedited appeal being granted by the 9th Circuit (a good sign) we should hear more by August.

    The Los Angeles County piece do not worry about since that is the state court claims and may be a moot point if MLB loses in the 9th Circuit.

  47. Keep in mind the A’s are televised 10M people in NorCal. If they are good like they are now in a new ballpark in San Jose….expect sellouts every night. Like the Sharks.

  48. Sid, you were going so well until you tried to bring the law suit in. If the A’s were doing the suing, all that you said and more would make it a slam dunk case. Unfortunately, the A’s being successful doesn’t really impact whether SJ has a case or not. It’s the A’s being restricted, not SJ. SJ suit is simply on the potential lost income from not being allowed to work with the A’s, not on the ability of a ballpark to make money/increase market share for the team.

  49. We have to be sure Selig is thinking he’s dropped 10,000 hints hints hints to Oakland to just come up with public financing for a ballpark and this nightmare could be over for everyone. Every other city (except Frisco) has chipped in for a ballpark and Oakland can be counted on to do the same, right? After all, Selig is the guy who defies the odds in places like Minnesota and gets ballparks built. Not going to happen. Oakland is Selig’s Waterloo when it comes to new ballpark construction. So MLB can continue to deal with this nightmare waiting for the happy ending it hopes for but is not going to to get.

  50. pjk, the thing is, MLB is making a TON of cash. They don’t have to act in any way they don’t want to. There’s zero reason for them give in here until someone forces them to act, not threat, FORCE. And even then, they have alternatives to giving in. In other words, there’s zero desperation on their side. If anything, given the choice of the status quo or the risk of self financing a ball park, they’ll keep the status quo. Eventually someone will pay, if not in the bay area, somewhere else.

  51. @fc: FYI the A’s outdrew the giants 17 out of the 32 years the giants played at Candlestick – how could that be considered as the giants dominating the A’s? (only a giants fan could believe that is dominating)

  52. The real issue that will affect where and if the A’s and Raiders move will be determined after the upcoming Federal Reserve Meeting when we see if there are increases in Interest Rates (which affects the cost of borrowing money). We already saw this with the “Government Shutdown.” The one thing that ended it, was Obama agreeing for the Federal Government to assume financial responsibility for Olmstead Locks. This is a huge Project that is pivotal for BOTH House Majority Leader John Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (because it is happening in their home areas of Cincinnati & Louisville). Let me give you some numbers on it from Wikipedia: “Authorized by Congress in 1988 at a then estimated total project cost of $775 million, Olmsted’s estimated project cost had grown to $2.1 billion by the time the Board’s 24th Annual Report was submitted in October 2010. In April 2012 , the Administration announced that the Olmsted project’s cost had increased yet again, to $2.918 billion on a fully funded basis or $3.099 billion based on the project’s expected construction schedule.

    “With only approximately half of the project’s needed funding appropriated to date, the new escalated project cost has moved Olmsted’s projected project completion date to September 2024.” Those guys knew, that when (WHEN NOT IF) Rates rise, the odds are it would be difficult to complete for Financial Reasons so they shifted funding of it to Washington. The opportunity to get cheaper financing NOW, rather than risking Rates Rise (along with the Transbay Center Construction), are Major Reason why the Warriors just bought the land in San Francisco, rather than waiting (until after the Agnos Referendum), and hoping they could get the Piers, and instead risking being stuck in Oakland, if they could not. I suspect, this is also something that Davis, Wolff, the JPA, and even Quan are thinking about as we speak.

  53. @ David Brown
    “Davis, Wolff, the JPA, and even Quan are thinking about as we speak”
    Re: Just having these people thinking the same thing, at the same time would be an improvement

  54. Duffer,

    The A’s outdrew the Giants 17 out of 32 years that Oakland played at the Coliseum and the Giants played at Candlestick? Wow. If I were the A’s, I’d be disappointed considering that 1) the ‘Stick was a miserable venue that was hard to get to and 2) the A’s were a lot more successful during that time period on the field.

    During that time period, the A’s went 2584-2471 from 1968-1999, the Giants 2535-2525 (all of this from Baseballreference.com). Not a huge deal you say? Perhaps. But the A’s did a lot more with their wins than the Giants ever managed. From 1968 to 1999 the A’s went to the playoffs 10 times, the World Series 6 times and won the series 4 times. The Giants went to the playoffs 4 times, the World Series once and did not win. They both experienced droughts between playoffs but the Giants droughts tended to be longer than the A’s (16 years for the Giants, 7 years for the A’s) and they rarely put together consecutive great seasons during this period like the A’s managed twice. Honestly, the A’s were one of the most exciting teams in baseball in this time period and only the Yankees had more WS wins.

    The A’s were by far the better team and certainly the most exciting yet they only barely exceeded the definitely mediocre Giants in attendance. The Giants did fairly well attendance-wise considering the above and also considering the Giants played in a truly terrible venue. Candlestick was always a miserable place where you could freeze your butt off on a summer afternoon and it was more difficult to get to. The Coliseum was never great but it was a lot more comfortable and it was far easier to get to with better access to the freeway and it’s own BART station.

    Anyhow, that was then and this is now. The ‘Stick is ancient history now and this all becomes less relevant.

  55. Lakeshore/Neil, no matter what people think about where the A’s and Raiders should play, it is a given that financing facilities, must play a role in any calculation involving the futures of both teams. Basically, unless you are Rebecca Kaplan, you have to know that neither the A’s or Raiders will be playing together at the Coliseum Site with the same conditions, a Decade from now; Where the Locations are and how will the funding will occur those are different issues. If Quan and the JPA really believed the Warriors were staying they got a jolt of reality. (To be fair, I wonder if they have been Grandstanding and ” Scapegoating” Wolff and to a lesser extent Davis), or they actually had their heads stuck in the sand and believed they were staying?). One thing is for sure: if I owned the A’s or Raiders and I saw that in Northern California, first the Giants, then Stanford, then Cal, then the Niners, and apparently the Kings and Warriors are getting something, I would not accept remaining at the Coliseum as is.

  56. @David Brown- I agree the Raiders and A’s should not accept playing at the Coliseum considering all the other teams you mentioned have gotten or about to get new facilities in the next few years.

    The issue is the Raiders are stuck by their own stupidity. Mark Davis is a spoiled rich kid who always got what he wanted growing up. Instead of listening to Amy Trask and partnering with the 49ers he decided he was so “awesome” that he could get it done on his own.

    Plain and simple stupidity, Davis thought the 49ers would fail in SC and they would come crawling to him to partner in Oakland….JPA thought the same thing. Then reality struck and 49ers got it done by themselves.

    The Raiders only have themselves to blame for being stuck with no way out. Now the 49ers have a big leg up in the market and that falls on Mark Davis’ shoulders 100%.

    As for the A’s; they are stuck only because of the Giants/MLB. They should have been in San Jose 10 years ago right after Pac Bell Park was built. There is no where to build in the East Bay and the Raiders are sitting on their heads.

    Bad situation for the A’s because of the Raiders, had Davis done the “smart” thing and moved to SC with the 49ers the A’s could build on the current site now with the Warriors gone soon.

    Your right the JPA and Quan are trying to scapegoat Wolff because they think in the their own minds the A’s can build privately in Oakland with no issues.

    Straight stupidity all around…..The A’s are the true victims of MLB/Giants/Raiders/Quan/JPA.

  57. @ David Brown
    I here you and your comments are relevant to any organization, or municipality that would like to take on a major project.
    My comment was a little (intended) tong and check, as this group of clowns would have to actually agree on something, for your comments to be relevant to the specific situation.
    It would be nice if we were at that point, with the Raiders, or the A’s, but as I said, I do here what you’re saying and I hope it becomes an issue for all that you listed. (In Oakland / Bay Area.)

  58. sorry: “tong and cheek”

  59. @Sid Not sure you’re being fair to Mark Davis. I believe his dad was still calling the shots when the decision was made not to become equity partners with the 49ers on the SC stadium. By the time Mark took control I think that ship had sailed and all that was available was a tenancy. Since that will most likely remain a possibility indefinitely, it certainly makes sense to exhaust the possibility of getting their own stadium before signing on.

  60. If I was the Raiders ( without question one of the most iconic teams in sports), I would not want to play LA Clippers to the Lakers or NY Jets to the Giants, and that is what they would be in Santa Clara. The reality is that Davis knows he will not be sharing a facility with the A’s much longer, so he might as well go for his own Stadium ( either at the Coliseum Site or LA). What should have happened a long time ago, is Quan announce that we will give the site to the Raiders to build a Stadium in exchange for staying 25 years ( of more), and of course, the Raiders would be responsible for Mount Davis debt). This way, the A’s would essentially be homeless and could have started construction in San Jose ( Giants be damned). But by playing games, she could essentially have the Raiders and A’s join the Warriors out of Oakland.

  61. This current negotiating gamesmanship between the Coliseum Authority and the A’s doesn’t make one bit of sense, especially given that we have no definitive decision yet on the Raiders future stadium plans with CC. Once we know if the Raiders will, or will not be getting their CC stadium; then the A’s ballpark options will be more clearly defined. At that point, the A’s could very likely be gaining more leverage with their respective ballpark options, including both San Jose and the Coliseum site.

  62. @llpec, as David Brown suggested, Oakland city officials appear to giving into the Raiders (who wants a football only stadium – who could blame them also)and booting the A’s out of the Coli. Being the only tenant of the Coliseum may be enough to satisfy Mark Davis for the time being. One would beleive that the A’s would consider the CC site only if SJ loses the MLB vs San Jose case. A SCOTUS ruling (if they agree to take the case , may be three years away. This situation could be over much sooner if the 9th circuit Court – or the state torts case – make a judgement in San Jose’s favor. Even if San Jose loses the court case, Oakland would always have the option of luring the A’s back to the CC site – so it could be a win-win situation for Oakland.

  63. @duffer, It will come as a huge loss to Oakland if the courts rule in favor of San Jose, and if the Raiders decide to permanently move to Santa Clara or LA. By 2018, the Coliseum complex would then most likely become a white elephant minus the A’s, Raiders, and Warriors. If on the other hand, the Raiders do get their CC Stadium, the A’s would not likely come back to Oakland with that scenario. Oakland would only have their CC for ten sports events per year. Good luck, Oakland!

  64. @llpec – Keep in mind that the Raiders don’t want the Santa Clara option (at least long term) – one would believe they aren’t too interested with a stadium share in LA also. Oakland/Quan may believe San Jose could possibly win in court also, so booting the A’s out won’t be a factor.

  65. Duffer, I would agree that the probability is the Raiders do not want to share a Stadium (say with the Rams) in LA. But if the Raiders cannot get control over the Coliseum Site in say Late 2015, due to such factors as Economics and (or)Politics (for example: will Quan even be reelected, and if she is not, will the new Major have a different agenda than Redevelopment of the Coliseum Site?), then what? I also do not believe the Raiders have the same feelings (extreme dislike) towards the Rams as they do towards the Niners. The LA odds go up under that Scenario. On the other hand, if the Raiders get the Coliseum Site, the odds are the A’s are finished in Oakland after 2015. One more point: I do think Selig leaving office can only help the A’s, when it comes to San Jose, because he has been at best unsympathetic (I would actually say hostile), towards the A’s and moving to San Jose (sometimes I wonder if he wants them in Montreal, which of course, is the favored solution for the Giants?). I think when all is said and done, the answer to what happens with the future location of the A’s (and Raiders for that matter) will not be determined in Court, but will be happen between Election Day and Early January.

  66. @David Brown: Selig has worked MLB owners to vote yes for the A’s move. Also, if Selig were really against the A’s move, there would been a vote taken already(evidently the A’s don’t have quite the 3/4 majority yet) and voted it down. Or Selig wouldn’t have bothered to form the blue ribbon at all. Definitely the giants are opposed, and some other owners may be (Wolff has suggested that) Concerning Oakland elections determining what the A’s will do – not correct. The A’s will wait out the SJ vs MLB court cases – if San Jose wins, the A’s will move here. Who gets elected Oakland Mayor – Quan or someone else, will have little effect on the A’s plans , Oakland is plan B, in case the San Jose doesn’t win in court.

    Also, the only opinions that believe that San Jose has no chance of winning the SJ vs MLB case are coming from giant homer dopes such as Tim Kawakami or Ray Ratto (who it is very clear know nothing about business law and shouldn’t be even be commenting about the SJ vs MLB case)We shall see the outcome – however the hopers who keep claiming that San Jose has no chance may be disappointed with the outcome.

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