A rift opens between Oakland and Alameda County

In the aftermath of the PR disaster that was Friday’s JPA meeting, discord between the two halves of the JPA, the City of Oakland and Alameda County, was revealed. Tensions had been simmering under the surface for some time, most evidently on display during the all-hands joint meeting last December. In Friday afternoon’s Trib article, JPA Board Chair and AlCo Supe Nate Miley expressed his discontent with the City, calling the no-show a step towards dissolving the JPA. He again brought up the possibility of the City buying the County out of the JPA, which would allow Oakland to go it alone on Coliseum City.

Neither party has the available cash to buy the other out, but Miley seems bent on making it part of the discussion. The implications would be huge. Coliseum City talks have divided the JPA into Oakland as the more pro-Raiders group and Alameda County as more skeptical and perhaps leaning towards the A’s. There are major fundamental differences between how the two sides characterize the talks. The City is optimistic about BayIG and the Raiders, whereas the County is questioning where the money will come from and is already looking at alternatives. Should this divide stay intact, it’s difficult to see how the two sides could come together to approve a large-scale redevelopment scheme like Coliseum City. Maybe the rift can be healed as more information comes in that could build confidence with the County leaders. Coliseum City’s current trajectory makes such a kumbaya moment nearly inconceivable.

I’m starting to think that if the JPA had a quorum and took a vote, the lease extension would’ve been approved 5-3 or 6-2, which would’ve forced the City Council to vote on it. There are 2 CMs on the board and 2 Oakland appointees, Yui Hay Lee and Aaron Goodwin. Goodwin has frequently taken independent positions in the past, most recently being the lone dissenter on the short-term lease vote in November. At the time, Goodwin cited the lack of a long-term agreement with the A’s as the reason for his dissent. 10 years is a much longer commitment, even with the opt-outs (which have been standard practice at the Coliseum for years). When the JPA took $3 million out of the capital improvements fund to fund the Coliseum City studies, it was Goodwin who was concerned about the impact the siphoning would have on the relationship with the A’s.

Goodwin’s name should be familiar to those with some sports business knowledge because he’s been an agent to numerous NBA players for 20 years. His current client list includes Oakland native and Portland Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard, among others.

If Goodwin didn’t like the lease or chose to vote as a bloc with the rest of the City side, the results would’ve been 4-4, a stalemate. That probably would’ve forced the JPA to go back to the drawing board, which would’ve been fine in that everyone would be forced to be honest about where the JPA stood with regards to the lease.

With a 5-3 or better vote, the next course of action would’ve been for the City Council and the County Board of Supervisors to vote on the lease. Let’s assume that the Supes approved the lease. It would’ve been up to the City. There’s no telling what could’ve happened. There are several potential outcomes:

  1. Council draws up resolution in support, votes to approve lease
  2. Council draws up resolution in support, votes to kill lease
  3. Council draws up resolution against lease, sends their own version back to JPA
  4. Council never makes resolution, lease never comes up for vote

Any of the last three outcomes makes the City look bad in MLB’s eyes, especially after Bud Selig prematurely announced that a lease agreement had been made. Selig’s power play and not-so-subtle wording put Oakland on the defensive. Whether it’s a setup to force Oakland’s hand or Selig simply siding with Wolff, it’s a difficult decision for the City to make with the Council attempting to balance the A’s and Raiders’ interests. As symbolically good a lease would look to Wolff and Selig, it could look terrible to Mark Davis and Roger Goodell. But the City had to know that this day was coming, and that to keep stalling until a solution magically appeared for them was a pipe dream. Selig has discounted Howard Terminal in concurrence with Wolff. Davis considers Coliseum City the last shot for Oakland, and continually has been disappointed by the lack of progress on the deal front. Oakland’s time to tap-dance around the issue is coming to an end.

That leaves the one lingering question about the lease extension, Why now? The A’s lease is up in 2015, not this year, so the urgency feels out of place. Maybe Selig decided to get the first domino rolling, knowing that Coliseum City had a timetable for a decision later this year. Sports law expert Nathaniel Grow considers a new extension potentially damaging for San Jose’s antitrust lawsuit against MLB. That seems like a long shot, especially considering San Jose’s shaky legal standing in the first place. If that is the motivation, it’ll prove once and for all that MLB isn’t terribly concerned about local politics. They’re looking out for baseball. Everything else ends up collateral damage.

178 thoughts on “A rift opens between Oakland and Alameda County

  1. The ineptitude, even after all these years, never fails to astound.

  2. I am no insider, but another possibility is that Alameda County knows (or at least believes), based on dealing with Mark Davis and Raiders officials, that the Raiders are gone after 2014, and figures it makes sense to at least secure something (the A’s), instead of risking ending up with nothing. The City (see Quan, Jean), on the other hand, are afraid of actually losing the next Election to say Rebecca Kaplan, and do not want to lose any VOTES of angry Raider Fans, so the strategy could be to stall until after the Election, then deal with the A’s situation later, figuring she could look like a heroine standing up for “Taxpayers” against “Greedy Developers” like Wolff, and if the Raiders leave, blaming Davis for (you guessed it) “Greed” if he goes to Santa Clara or LA. Basically, nothing but Politics instead of Leadership.

  3. I’m really fascinated to see what happens, the next meeting is July 3rd right? I doubt this gets resolved this week.

  4. How much of a cash buyout would be needed if one party were to walk away? With $200 million in debt left on the facilities there might not be that much needed.

  5. @gojohn10 – You’re on the right track. $100 million would probably do it. The scary part is Oakland having to assume the entire operating subsidy on the stadium and maintenance responsibilities of the arena. That alone is worth $5-10 million per year extra.

  6. The links to Nathaniel Grow and the “potentially damaging” extension are not working.

  7. If a lease with Oakland can’t be worked out – the A’s will need time to build a temporary stadium. Therefore the A’s will need to get Oakland’s decision A.S.A.P. (It still appears that Selig seeks avoid a temporary ballpark for the A’s at all costs and would strongly prefer that the A’s move to phone company park – judging by how Selig keeps butting in on the situation)

  8. If the rift is really that bad, perhaps both parties would be willing to work something out. Maybe a land swap? Oakland would have to be very confident in their ability to close the Coliseum City deal (with or without the sports teams involved in the project).

  9. re: Oakland’s time to tap-dance around the issue is coming to an end.

    …Stalling, stalling, stalling has allowed Oakland to hold on to both teams indefinitely, without addressing the question of badly needed new stadiums.

  10. Both Alameda County and the City of Oakland have finally come to the realization that it is only feasible to have one new outdoor sports facility at the Coliseum site, if there is any chance to have one there at all. Oakland’s ongoing delaying tactics to retain both the A’s and Raiders is finally over. MLB officially came out and put a stop to this charade, with a no go to HT. December’s joint Alameda County/Oakland meeting helped to make its Alameda County members more keenly aware that a mostly privately funded NFL football stadium would not have the event density to be sufficiently economically feasible, especially as compared to what the potential ROI from an annual eighty-one event MLB ballpark would bring. On the other hand, Oakland officials seem to be maintaining a blind eye to this fact, and appear to be favoring the Raiders with their hearts. It could wind up that MLB will finally allow the A’s to move to San Jose, with an unexpected assist from Oakland officials. Lew Wolff would ideally love for this scenario to play out. Oakland officials are just dumb enough to possibly let it happen.

  11. @ML: Do you know why some legal experts believe that San Jose’s case is shaky? Not that I’m a legal expert – however, the arguments that I’ve seen against San Jose, to this point, are not convincing.

  12. @ duffer:

    If SJ loses in CA, the case will be appealed to the Sup Ct. That is the point. Will BS and MLB allow the case to get there because they know if the Sup Ct takes the case, the ATE is gone forever. Right now, BS and MLB are just bluffing and they have not lost yet.Many believe SC could not build a new stadium for the 49ers but the SC mayor told them STFU and let her try. It worked if you had a real plan. Oakland never had a real plan for the A’s. The A’s are not going anywhere except maybe a temp site.

  13. All Oakland did was stay strong and not give in to a horrible lease which did not secure the A’s long-term future in Oakland and did not protect Oakland tax payers.

    Miley and Haggerty are the ones who should be ashamed of themselves for pointing fingers at Oakland in the face of a horrible proposal.

    Haggerty has a history of undermining Oakland’s ballpark efforts. Haggerty insisted on placing the Fremont site on the list of potential ballpark sites and then had Wolff negotiating with Fremont even as he ws faking his 66th to High Street plan in Oakland.

    Secondly, Oakland is hot, hot, hot, right now. Why would Oakland even negotiated from a position of weakness? Real estate is booming, the start-up tech sector is moving to Oakland, and Oakland even has a 29 million budget surplus. Even the Brooklyn Basin project is under way with 3200 future homes just south of Jack London Square. MLB should be at Oakland’s doorstep hoping to be able to build a ballpark in this booming but still undervalued city.


  14. @daniel: I agree with you. The argument against San Jose claims that it is difficult to prove if a municipality gains a net profit by hosting a professional sports team. That might be true in most cases – where the municipality typically funds most of the cost for their new sports stadiums – not in San Jose’s case, where the A’s are paying 100% of the A’s stadium’s cost. (the anti San Jose camp may not even thought that through)

    As far as proving if San Jose has intent to build a new stadium, some legal experts have commented that the talks between San Jose and the A’s, and the plans for Cisco field should be enough proof. Furthermore, SJ mayor Reed, Licardo, and the Cotchett Law Firm are obviously not stupid. Reed and Licardo own law degrees and have legal experience. The Cotchett Law Firm, one would believe, would not have taken the SJ vs MLB case on a contingency basis unless they believed they could win. These people, one would think, know what they are doing. The anti-San Jose camp often maintains that San Jose doesn’t have a chance or the A’s to San Jose won’t happen – they could be guilty of wishful thinking though. Unlike them – the best view is to see what develops and not prejudge the situation.

  15. Elamano, you are so full of shit… I work in the tech sector. It’s not moving to Oakland. Go preach to idiots on baseball oakland. They buy everything.

  16. Let’s just go ahead and officially declare EG the new primary comments section troll. Let’s just put a team in Long Beach or Colorado Springs or Newark, NJ (/sarcasm).

  17. I’d be a troll only if I making things up and only if this message board were a strictly San Jose message board.

    How about having an intelligent and cordial dialogue instead of name calling?

  18. How bout stop reciting bullshit press release garbage? How bout actually looking at the whole picture instead of saying “Oakland’s median home prices are growing, it’s hot!” How is every other cities median home prices doing?
    I am happy to have an intelligent discussion. You don’t qualify because you are preaching dogma.

  19. EG does have some valid points. The A’s are having difficulty with Oakland city officials – not the CC site itself. Why would Wolff consider building there if it were so bad? With all the talk about Oakland as dangerous – has there ever been a fatality at the Coliseum? no. On the other hand, the giants cute little ATT park has had four unfortunate fatalities in four years – it likely is the most dangerous sports venue in the U.S. (let’s not talk about that though, we mustn’t criticize our precious little giants or their ballpark)

  20. @duffer- Agreed, Cotchett defended the NFL in the 1980s in a similar case vs. Los Angeles to let the Raiders move against the leagues wishes and lost big time. The only difference was the LA Coliseum existed while Cisco Field does not yet….It remains to be seen how that plays out.

    But the drawings for Cisco Field by Wolff, a certified EIR, and an economic study show intent by the A’s to move to SJ if allowed.

    As for this rift between the County and Oakland, it looks shameful to the entire country not to be on the same page. Oakland and Alameda County are partners and it showed in the no vote that is not the case.

    How can any team (Raiders, Warriors, A’s) negotiate and expect anything to come to fruition in this kind of hostile environment?

    Any new stadium has to be a working public-private partnership a la Santa Clara and the 49ers.

    If one side is divided how can anything get done?

    The more of a mess the A’s become on the public spotlight helps San Jose more and more. The sewage-gate incident last year, MLB delaying now 5 years on a BRC report, and now this?

    There is obvious collusion going on and the courts have to force MLB to explain themselves as this will not simply go away.

  21. I wouldn’t go so far to call EG a troll. Ignorant and misinformed, yes. Troll, no. If you’re looking for a troll, look to harry, he’ll gladly oblige.

    EG, you can’t possibly say the lease terms are bad. Why? Because they’ve never been published. It’s really that simple. And you’re NOT going to get any team to legally lock themselves into a lease in an old stadium that doesn’t give them out clauses. Particularly when you’re anticipating kicking them out yourself to cater to another team. And you’re NOT going to get any team to lock themselves into building there without a finalized, funded plan with the ground ready to break. And Oakland doesn’t have anything anywhere close to that. Attempting to force the A’s into staying in Oakland permanently beyond the Coliseum is a flat out deal breaker and non-starter. It’s about as contemptible as if Wolff were to request the city pay the team to stay in the Coliseum. Furthermore, MLB would never approve that kind of lease. Neither side has the position of strength they seem to think they have.

  22. The lease terms are bad because Wolff wants a one year notice to vacate the Coliseum and move to a different city. The lease is bad because Wolff wants the 5 million he owes to Oakland to go towards a new 10 million video screen in a ballpark he intends to abandon without any assurance that he’ll build in Oakland.

    The lease is rotten to the core because it’s basically a power play to destroy Coliseum City, lose the Raiders to a different city with no guarantee that Wolff and MLB will build a new ballpark in Oakland.

    The stench of this deal is o bad that anyone on the Oakland City Council approving anything close to this should be recalled.

  23. @EG keep providing good info, a lot of people on here will turn a blind eye to anything Pro Oakland as you can see even if it slaps them in the face. “Facts” that’s a lie its Oakland nothing can be true if its positive and the name Oakland is involved, it only has to be SJ. Bring up Brooklyn Basin its still imaginary on here and not happening despite all the bulldozers and cleanup going on at this moment. You will never have a SJ regular side with you on here, they will try and intimidate you until your gone, but more perspective is great for this site and keep bringing it, it brings better debate that’s not so one sided, with everything but facts.

  24. “There is obvious collusion going on and the courts have to force MLB to explain themselves as this will not simply go away.”

    @Sid, MLB is steadfastly giving backing to the Giants’ unprecedented unwavering hold to its territorial claims within their shared Bay Area market with the A’s. It is hoped that at some point court proceedings will force the truth to come out as to how and why MLB could act against its very own greater interests, especially when another of its franchises is so adversely impacted.

  25. EG makes objectively incorrect claims (Silicon Valley going to Oakland and Oakland having a lower crime rate than San Francisco) in this and other comments sections on this blog and expects people to buy his bullshit. I suspect he is the main reason the comments on the last post were shut down.

  26. It has been 5 freaking years since BS and MLB created that bogus BRC. WHy can’t Oakland come up with a real plan? by delaying, BS and MLB have given Oakland plenty of time to come up with something. Has anybody from Oakland actually invited BS, MLB and other owners to Oakland yet? SC did. SC showed Roget Goodell and the NFL hey we had a plan here.

    If Oakland wants HT, let’s invite BS and baseball to Okaland. Show them the site and money. Show BS and MLB an actual plan. If Don Knauss and Andy “Im in need of attention” Dolich want in, they can show baseball a real plan and money. Do they have 1B+ ? If they do, I am certain baseball will listen. No doubt about it.

  27. EG – What exactly are you suggesting the A’s do here?

    Should they sign up for Coliseum City which has a $500M funding gap (likely closer to $1B with an A’s stadium as well) and no firm commitment from the developer or the Raiders?

    Should they sign up to build at Howard Terminal, and spend 100’s of millions of dollars on cleanup and infrastructure with no corporate or city support?

    The A’s, as with every other team in baseball, are a business. They’re not a charity group for the city of Oakland. The A’s can’t build a stadium and go bankrupt in the process. There are three ways to fund the stadium:

    1. City support
    2. Corporate support
    3. Funds from related development projects

    For item 1, Oakland has no money to support a ball park.

    For item 2, no corporations have stepped up to help fund a stadium like they did for AT&T, Levi’s and even Cisco Field?

    This leaves the third option to build a stadium. This means that the A’s need development rights over the area and Oakland isn’t willing to do that.

    Regardless of whether Oakland is the best city in the world or the worst city in the world, given the current situation what would you suggest the A’s do?

  28. SMG,

    NBC Bay Area in San Jose did a news segment regarding Oakland being the new hot bed for start-ups who can no longer afford SF and the South Bay. I didn’t make that up. I also showed a crimemaping map where 175 crimes occurred near AT&T Park in the last week and then I showed a crimemapping map of the area around the Coliseum where 26 crimes occurred in tha last week. That’s all I did.

    “Crime rates” are comprised of crime figures sent to the FBI by local police Departments. What I’ve been showing are weekly crimemapping reports which state the number of crimes in a specific area and for the entire city in general. Those crimes compiled by crimapping don’t come close to the official crime numbers sent out by SFPD to the FBI. You can believe what you want about. ” crimes rates” but crimemapping is just showing you the weekly and daily crime numbers as well as individual crime categories.

    You don’t like the respective crime numbers? Then please get in touch with crimemapping and register your complaints. Tell them that you know better about the individual crimes that occur in SF and in OAK.

    Also, I suggest you contact NBC Bay Area in SJ and let then know that you think they’re “full of sh-t” for running a segment on how well Oakland is doing recruiting start-up tech companies.

    The bottom line is that Oakland is thriving right now. Crime is down and investment, real estate, arts, dinning and entertainment are all up. The question is will Bud Selig and Lew Wolff take notice or will they continue playing games and using Oakland as a temporary location.

  29. @SMG I don’t think anyone is saying that all of SV is going to Oak, yes Oakland is receiving a boom due to surrounding areas crazy prices, some business are expanding in Oakland and a lot of start ups are heading to Oakland, not to say SV is gonna disappear we all know SV is SV and will be strong for a very long time, but to say that Oakland cant support the A’s in this day in time, I don’t see it, some have gone back and forth on the prices of homes and income but it doesn’t matter if SJ is number 1 and lets say Oakland was 4 or 5. The A’s can still be supported in Oakland, That’s rich people talk in my opinion well we have more money so we deserve/entitled to whatever we want. The fact is Oakland or SJ can support the A’s in this day and age, the Bay is booming and if Lew can get 100 acres for dirt cheap from the city of Oakland, he can build his condos/hotel/retail and make a killing as well

  30. “Sports law expert Nathaniel Grow considers a new extension potentially damaging for San Jose’s antitrust lawsuit against MLB.”

    This would only be true if the lease contained terms that would prevent the A’s from moving to San Jose if that became possible. That would be basically the same as a complete A’s capitulation to Oakland’s pipedream wish list (i.e. an agreement not to build anywhere but Oakland for the next ten years). The A’s have made clear this is a non-starter (as it well should be). The chance of this is approximately zero.

  31. @ Daniel the city/jpa and attorneys have met many times in Oakland with MLB and have kept consistent contact with MLB about the developments and plans etc. So the indecision and the stalling only can lead to more rumors as MLB must know damn near all the details and what they need to know about each city but wont release or make any decisions.

  32. @ K : 5 years and still no plan ? What do you call that ?

  33. @Dmoas

    Watch it dmoas..Elmano is not alone…Oakland is on the rise and u guys need to stop bullying. Because the Save Oakland Sports nation has gotten stronger then the pro san jose crowd…keep it classy…..or else.

    Now I will ask again..with the Raiders/Colony Capital building on the Coliseum site…should the A’s build their temp ballpark or new on the 66th street side or all the way over to the hegenberger side by Denny and the Air BART extension???

  34. EG; Just shut the f**k up already. You are grossly overstating and misrepresenting your claims and literally everyone here knows it. Oakland has a SIGNIFICANTLY higher crime rate than San Francisco in EVERY major crime category except larceny. And tech companies OVERWHELMING choose to develop facilities in SF, the Peninsula, and SV, not Oakland.

    The real bottom line here is that you are a completely delusional troll who shits up the comments section with repeatedly refuted material. That’s the last thing I’m going to say to you because you aren’t worth another second of typing.

  35. Slacker,

    Howard Terminal has 60 acres of land to use for a ballpark and for additional development. Oakland and East Bay corporations have written letters to Lew Wolff and Bud Selig stating their support for this site. The Port of Oakland has agreed to give control of Howard Terminal to the Oakland ballpark group led by on Knauss of Clorox.

    In turn Wolff has done nothing but dismiss this site. Wolff has refused to consider this incredible site and has now enlisted his college buddy, Bud Selig to dismiss the site as a favor to his college frat brother.

    Howard Terminal is there. Wolff could build the ballpark with the willing and enthusiastic help of the Oakland and East Bay business community. Wolff could build housing adjacent to the ballpark to help repay the loans. Condos in Jack London Square are selling for $500,000 to $1,000,000.

    Instead of working with the Oakland business community on a beautiful new waterfront ballpark at Jack London Square which would both be a boon to Oakland and to the Oakland A’s, or selling the team to someone who would embrace this wonderful site, Wolff instead denigrates the site, refuses to sell to someone who would see the potential and then pretends he’s interested in building at the Coliseum in order to put Oakland behind the 8 ball as far as Coliseum City and the Raiders.

    Wolff is behaving like a spoiled child who picks up his ball and leaves unless he get’s his way. Wolff should be working with Don Knauss on Howard Terminal instead of behaving like a spoiled child while playing games with Oakland.

  36. @Daniel 5 years is when the BRC was put together CC didn’t get started until Dec of 2011, so a little over 2 years ago, I’m not saying Oakland is not a fault the city staff has a lot of blame to go around many many years beyond the stated 5, but to say that progress is not being made finally after years of stalling is false. Quan was working to succeed new stadiums before she was elected to be mayor, the city has already spent over 5 million dollars for the EIR etc (which should be out in the next few months), Quan has also gotten rid of persons on the port staff and city staff to make approval go much smoother if and when votes need to come up. It’s not going at the pace we all would like, hell we should have had one with Jerry Brown, but it is moving and soon, this year we will have answers.

  37. Remember that time 75 SV business leaders, most notably including executives at many major corporations, supported the A’s moving to San Jose and didn’t write a letter of support for keeping them in Oakland?


    Yeah, I remember that too.

  38. EG – If Howard Terminal is such a great site and if Don Knauss and the city are so committed to the site, why haven’t they paid for the EIR?

    Why aren’t their developers and corporations fighting over the right to fund/build there?

    In terms of BS, if he wanted the A’s to move to San Jose, he could make it happen. The fact that he hasn’t shows that he’d rather see the A’s in Oakland (even if it is just to avoid a fight with the Giants). The fact the BS and the BRC haven’t promoted Howard Terminal also says something.

    Actions speak louder than words and so far Oakland and Don Knauss have put out a lot of words but no action.

  39. @smg
    Why dont u pick on somebody ur own size. Like me..Harry Save Oakland Sports champion…Elmano is one of my men….anyway…Howard Terminal for the most part I agree with. I just tell my S.O.S brethren that Oakland will have to pay for the clean up and roadway work…and I feel its cheaper to the “tax payers” to just have the A’s build somewhere on the Coliseum complex. ..that’s is why I asked of 66th side, hegenberger or in fact where Oracle is…to build a temp ballpark or new state of art ballpark. .what u guys think.

  40. How can you go forward on Howard Terminal when you have Lew Wolff always denigrating the site? Wolff makes the false claim that ” It would be easier to build on Treasure Island” than at Howard Terminal. The reason for the complete dismissal of Howard Terminal is because Wolff doesn’t like Oakland, has no faith in Oakland’s future, still has a Silicon Valley mind-set where going even further from his old money “Silicon Valley” is a bad thing and has no respect for Oakland’s ability to thrive in the Bay Area economy.

    Wolff, Fisher and Selig are still living in the past with old attitudes and perceptions. That’s why it’s like pulling teeth in order for these guys to see any potential in Oakland despite all the current evidence now before them.

  41. Elmano,

    How do you know Wolff wants a one year out? Have you read the lease terms? According to what ML just posted it’s 5 years before any out clause would kick in and it’s been reported as 2 years, not 1.

    And as for Howard terminal, HOK Sport determined the area was the single most expensive site to build on in the east bay 14 years ago when they studied multiple sites including HT. And HT has not gotten any cheaper to develop. It would cost an estimated BILLION with a B dollars to develop that site including site clean up, infrastructure, and the ballpark itself. Now who do you suggest pay for that? Oakland sure isn’t going to provide any cash toward it. AlCo seems ready to get out of the stadium game altogether. And Knauss and Co won’t even fund an EIR at the site. Where do you suggest that billion dollars come from? Wolff?

  42. @Slacker MLB has not really promoted anything they basically agreed to keep one voice and mimic what Lew recently said, He prefers CC if its Oakland. Selig said, “I continue to believe that the Athletics need a new facility and am fully supportive of the club’s view that the best site in Oakland is the Coliseum site.” He supports the “clubs view”. MLB will keep all of its options open for leverage until a stadium gets built and paid for. how would MLB look if they came out and said HT is the best site….. Like the JPA and city council, dysfunctional and not on the same page. All Selig said was it was not the “best location” in Oakland, that’s a far cry from turned down, and there’s no telling what future events can add to or change that opinion/outcome.

  43. Elmano, Wolff didn’t dismiss HT because he doesn’t like Oakland, he dismisses it because IT ISN’T VIABLE!!! It is a polluted mess of a site with major infrastructure issues that would have to go through multiple alphabet soup of approval agencies that would cost a billion dollars to develop. It is quite literally double the cost of building at the current site at the Coliseum for Wolff, or San Jose.

  44. @DAn please don’t bring up that old study I can break it down today and it would be almost the cheapest and the best site compared to all others. “Cost” was a 3, why? it says Land Acquisition/relocation of business, 2014 moot point the port is giving it away so you can pretty much erase that 37 million on the cost because its empty. Parking has changed as well lots more parking spaces and other parking being developed around the area as we speak. estimate 75 million, moot point or drastically reduced. Two of the most expensive areas that were said to be a hurdle don’t exist right now, and if you change that based on there findings they gave HT a 6 out of 7 for urban design and a 7 out of 7 for it to be completed on time, while the lowest numbers on the ranking don’t exist in 2014. This would put HT in front of all other sites except Uptown which scored a perfect 35.

  45. Where we the A’s going before 2018 anyway? AT&T? Congrats Oakland, that’s quite the moral victory there…

    I was reading through city documents yesterday and didn’t see anything that suggested the Oakland city council has the power to prevent its members from showing up at JPA meetings. Procedural rule 27 says that standing committee meetings cannot happen without a quorum – but the JPA is not a standing committee. The city council DOES have the power to tell its representatives how to vote. They could have forced Kaplan to vote NO. But all this talk of the council reps being barred from the JPA meeting via a legally binding vote is nonsense. If the city council is holding emergency meetings related to the JPA and not releasing written information about these meeting, then Oakland is in violation of the Brown Act. This stall tactic can’t go on…..unless Kaplan and company make the conscious decision to keep boycotting the vote. Which makes them look horrible.

  46. Elmano,

    In case you’d forgotten it, here is OBJECTIVE evidence of just how pricey Howard Terminal is to build on compared to other sites including the Coliseum. And mind you this was a study that was not commissioned by the A’s but rather the city and that was performed by THE preminent stadium builders in the last 30 years over at HOK Sport (now Populous).


    Don’t believe Wolff, fine, but you should believe HOK Sport and the city.

  47. Most of high the cost “disadvantages” and “key issues” in 2001 don’t exist in 2014,

  48. K, there is some parking in the area that wasn’t there before. But unless I’m mistaken it is ALL on the far side of the railroad from the site. And there is still not easy route in or out of the area for ballpark sized crowds. And HOK’s study didn’t address the added expense of adding an infill BART station which would likely need to be added to the site cost. And site cleanup costs have risen as well.

  49. K, transit and parking still remain big issues at that site, as does site remediation. But feel free to ignore that fact if it makes you feel better.

  50. What’s with all this HT site promotion? are there owners of that property who are attempting plug HT for their own interests?

    Lew Wolff has ruled out HT – explaining that it’s toxic cleanup and infrastructure costs would total at least $400 mil. – and that a stadium there would cost a $1 bil. or more. Since Wolff owns the A’s, he will not be building there. Bud Selig has even commented in public and ruled out the HT site (This is an unusual step for Selig – to get involved with the A’s by making these statements)

    There are some giants fans and so-called legal experts, and some anti San Jose A’s fans – who believe they can will that the A’s to San Jose move won’t happen because simply because they don’t want it to. Also there are HT site fans (some who may be plugging the site for their own self interests) who believe that they can will the A’s into building at the HT site – you are all very likely SOL though – hopers don’t win.

  51. @Dan there has been construction for parking around the area and under the 880 freeway. Not saying it is all mitigated but a significant chuck has been, they had 38 million for traffic improvements probably more now, and there is decent sized roads/ area down there to make things work. The issues I listed were the most expensive issues on the study and I believe this HT group has more info and they have spoken to state/ city and county officials about all of this and were given positive response about it. I do agree that if they are serious about this and believe it will work to write the check to start the EIR to show MLB how serious they are, hell its probably a write off anyway lol. You are right about BART and that question was raised for both CC and HT and the director of BART was on hand at the public meeting said that they will support/pay and are fully on board for redoing CC station and/or infill at HT as the infill might be cheaper that redoing CC station.

  52. Why must every conversation be reduced to San Jose vs Oakland? Everyone that keeps up with this issue should know that either place would be fine for the A’s to have a new ballpark in. San Jose would probably be the best place in the Bay Area for the A’s from an economic standpoint, but that does not meant it can’t work in Oakland and work much better than it is presently.
    The fact of the matter is we are no closer to a ballpark in San Jose, or Oakland then we were, when Wolff took over, there are many factors, players, and future players in this soap-opera to come before it’s solved, if anything I would say the A’s are closer to a new ballpark in Portland, San Antonio, or Montreal, then San Jose or Oakland and that is sad for us all.
    We sit here (at times), acting like school children fighting over Oakland and San Jose, and in the long run are team may leave the San Francesco Bay Area all together.

  53. @Dan fact is not you or I or anyone on here has a full scoped of how much it will truly cost so all I am going off of is past/Old facts and all the billion plus dollar stadium builders on here are going off of is assumption. Unless someone has connects in sac with commissions etc and people with the port none of us know. it this group is trying to prove Lew and the naysayers wrong, we all know they have interest in that area dude to recent development but if they are going forward with this let it all play out and stop the complaining

  54. Lakeshore/Neil is correct. It appears that Wolff has been right all along about the difficulty of dealing with Oakland. Wolff actually is considering Oakland these days(what a shift from a few years ago)Instead of being pleased by this new stance by Wolff – he’s now being called an A-hole because the A’s have shut the book on the HT site. The Oakland crowd appears to be impossible to please. One of these days – Wolff just might get fed up with all the b.s. and lunacy and move the team to Portland, San Antonio, etc.

  55. @K- You are defending a site in Howard Terminal that Wolff has looked at (along with the others in the HOK study) in such detail he has 227 pages of notes detailing his efforts.

    When Wolff completed the debriefing with the BRC it was up to the BRC to come back him with options and insight……5 years have passed and they have told him zero.

    What does that tell you? If the BRC was able to find any site in the East Bay that was feasible Wolff would have had to look at it or if he missed something on a site he dismissed such as HT.

    It is NOT Wolff’s problem to complete an EIR on any site. If SOS or OWB or Alameda County or Oakland want to do an EIR on the site no one is stopping them from doing so.

    Why will they not do the EIR??

    They all know full well an EIR would be suicide for the site and in the process it would vindicate Wolff proving it is not feasible.

    If that were to happen it would make SOS, OWB, and Oakland look bad and narrow it down to the Coliseum site where we all know nothing can be done as long as the Raiders/A’s share.

    Infrastructure (Plumbing, sewage, electric, internet/phone) to build on the 66th ave side would be 50M-100M alone for 1 new stadium. Hence why Mark Davis wants to build on the current site to keep costs low.

    You cannot build on the Hegenberger side because it is impossible to build infrastructure on that side.

    With this all said OWB, SOS, and Oakland put money where your mouth is and start an EIR and prove Wolff wrong on HT.

  56. OT – Let’s give it up for the Oakland Athletics. 51-30 halfway through the season. Best record in the MLB, in the toughest division.

    I think all the bellyaching about ancillary issues may actually benefit the team. Carry on!

  57. @Sid nothing is holding him back from releasing the doc’s and I don’t want to hear that MLB won’t let him, because we all know he can he has chosen to pick and choose when and where he will talk about the stadium situation, local news and radio except for SJ Merc is a no go he cant talk about it but if its New York/ LA market or Bloomberg its a go for him. he has said numerous times for over 5 years that he will sit down and show who ever would listen and want to take the time to go over big ol binder of why its not feasible, then when he gets called out on it about 2 years ago by Chris Townsend on the “A’s flagship radio station he flips out becomes defiant, says its so long and boring and never comes back or take Townsend up on his offer(BTW he also did that with Athletics Nation.) Those actions speak louder than words, he can kill all hoped for HT just by doing this, but instead he keeps the rumblings alive. As far as the EIR I did say the group if they are serious they should pay for it and get it started to prove what they are stating and if they did prove that maybe some traction could be made, I have my issues with that group as well. We need action not talk.

  58. 2 words for the 3 Oakland-only trolls: Victory Court

  59. @Anon please come with a better reply than that. VC was all based on redevelopment funds, which was killed due to the recession. And all this group is trying to do is to see if its possible, tell me whats wrong with that?

  60. @ K
    I here you there has been too much talk on all sides, regarding H.T., I think ML said something like “why (would Wolff), spend money to prove a negative”, but I agree with you if what Wolff has is so bad, as it pertains to H.T., then just release it, if OWB believes that H. T. is not as bad as Wolff is saying then pay for EIR prove you case.
    Wolff does not make himself look good when he says “I will consider the coliseum, if you stop talking about H.T.”, really you’re not required to build there, if it’s that bad show the work you have on it.
    I’m really starting to wonder, just which party is the lest serious about building in Oakland, Mark Davis, Lew Wolff, NFL, MLB, or the city of Oakland, I would list the Alameda counties members of the JPA, but they may be the only ones, which actually get something done.
    Can this get any worse?

  61. @K – Oakland is keeping HT alive, no one else.

    You can’t force a business to build somewhere if they don’t think it will be profitable. Oakland and OWB are the ones “selling” Howard Terminal. How legitimate of a sales pitch is it if they won’t commit to the EIR or present a funding plan for infrastructure? Even though it’s not a legitimate pitch, you’re blaming the A’s for saying no to what is essentially vaporware at this point.

    Do the folks that are promoting HT honestly think that the A’s can make money there but are just refusing to do it because they don’t like Oakland? I doubt the A’s ownership group could have ever bought these A’s if they made business decisions this way.

  62. Its a game of chicken, which side will spend money to prove the nay sayers wrong?

  63. @duffer

    Exactly right!! One day…what LW is going to do its say “screw these people” and get the moving vans and head to San Antonio or Portland. Meanwhile all the idiots at Oakland city hall will be crying like babies while they watch the trucks leave due east on I-80 or north on I-5.

    Meanwhile Oakland mayor and city council will spend their weekends looking for old bobble head dolls at the worlds largest flea market on the current stadium site.

  64. ML has already blogged about the HT site as unfeasible – without requiring a feasiblity study or EIR. Wolff must be chuckling about all this – Oakland city officials themselves are making a convincing argument about the difficulties of doing business with Oakland.

  65. Of course the A’s could make plenty of money at Howard Terminal. It’s a great location next to restaurants, plazas, marinas, and great public transportation. The 12th street Bart station is an easy 3/4 of a mile walk down Broadway or through Old Oakland via Washington Street. The Clay Street Ferry Terminal is adjacent to the site. Amtrak is just onmthemother side of JLS.

    It’s the perfect site for an urban downtown waterfront ballpark that MLB usually craves. In this case, MLB decided to cave in to the reluctant Lew Wolff because Wolff thinks he could make more money in San Jose where he has friends in high places and is an owner of hotels which would profit from the ballpark.

    Wolff has been determined since he bought the Oakland A’s that he would do everything in his power to high jack this franchise to San Jose. Wolff wants to give San Jose a free MLB franchise along with a free brand new ballpark at the expense of Oakland, Oakland A’s fans, the tradition of A’s baseball in Oakland etc.

    Wolff just doesn’t want to be in Oakland and he bought the franchise with the intention of taking it away from loyal Oakland fans.

    Now Wolff is determined to ruin a huge Coliseum City project as well as having Oakland lose its NFL franchise for a horrible temporary lese without any guarantee that he’ll build in Oakland.

    Originially it was reported that the deal comes with a one year notice clause, then it went to two and now it’s at five. It makes no difference if Oakland doesn’t get some sort of guarantee because it’s going to take five years anyway to build a ballpark in San Jose.

    If Wolff refuses to committ to Oakland, the city should negotiate with the Raiders who have stated publicly that they want to be in Oakland. The city can not allow itself to be used on a temporary basis and then end up losing the Riaders and losing Coliseum City as Wolff departs for San Jose. No one in their right mind would agree to such a deal. Oakland needs some sort of guarantee.

    Exactly, how does this benefit Oakland and Oakland A’s fans?

  66. Once again, Elmano – What is it about “MLB and the A’s have ruled out Howard Terminal” that you don’t understand? The way you talk about Oakland, it’s amazing the Yankees, the 49ers, the Dallas Cowboys, the Lakers and the Montreal Canadiens haven’t all relocated to the place. Instead, we have two of its three franchises trying to leave and a third getting very discouraged over years of failed negotiations on a new football stadium. “Negotiate with the Raiders”? That’s already been going on for years, Elmano. The results? Zip.

  67. @K “And all this group is trying to do is to see if its possible, tell me whats wrong with that?”


    sjlaugh actually said what I agree with. Knauss, Boxer, et al. should then leverage their investor base and fund the HT EIR. Let’s actually verify out the credibility of that site.

    After all, what’s ~$2million dollars, right? The Oak-Only crowd thinks it should be that easy for LW to drop ~$600-800million to build a stadium there.

  68. PJK,

    They “ruled out” Howard Terminal because Wolff and Fisher want to be in San Jose. It’s a great site but MLB knows that Wolff has his own scheme going on and Howard Terminal as an open option interferes with Wolff’s leverage and ultimate plans. Simple as that.

    Howard Terminal does much more for Jack London Square and Downtown Oakland than a ballpark at Coliseum City. Howard Terminal really is the best site in the Bay Area for a ballpark for the Oakland A’s.

    MLB knows this but they caved to Wolff’s little scheme. There’s no reason that Howard Terminal should be dismissed. HT makes the most sense for Oakland’s ROI as well as for the ballpark aesthetics and the future value of the francise.

  69. K, nothing gets cheaper as time goes by. Something that costs 500 million 10 years ago will NOT be less expensive. If anything, the cost will nearly double. But none of that really matters. While you’ll find this selfish, the only thing that actually matters to where Wolff will be wiling to build and under what circumstances, is Wolff himself. It’s his fking money. He’s the one who’s going to have to pay for this thing, he’s the one who’s going to have to justify the costs and meet all the financial demands of this. He’s the one being asked to take a major financial risk. Remember that Mount Davis fiasco? The JPA and the city are in huge amounts of debt because they took a gamble and it bit them in the ass. So if Wolff looks things over and has zero desire to waste his time and money on it, that’s absolutely his right. And if you want to prove his views wrong, it’s going to be at your expense, not his.

  70. Elmano, continuing to say it’s a great site doesn’t make it so. And continuing to say MLB “caved” to Wolff doesn’t make it so either. Saying Wolff wants San Jose because it would somehow help his hotel interests there also doesn’t make it so (particularly since a ballpark will do diddly squat for his hotel that is a mile away from Diridon). And saying Wolff is somehow so vindictive that he’d derail the Raiders just to spite Oakland while keeping his options open just reeks of paranoia and desperation.

    Fact is HT is a very expensive site (the most expensive in the Bay Area) with a massive built in price tag for site remediation, needed infrastructure improvements, and additional parking beyond what’s already been added in the area. On top of that no one has funded an EIR for the site, let alone figured out how to pay for any of the needed improvements and clean up. It’s currently over a mile from the nearest BART station which WILL require an infill station eventually or a dedicated AirBART style connector system. You may choose to ignore these things but it doesn’t negate the fact that Wolff and MLB have both independently come to the same conclusion, HT doesn’t work. And their conclusion is not only accurate, it’s the only one that matters since the team is ultimately theirs, not Oakland’s, not A’s fans, and not yours. They’re going to do what is best for the Athletics and MLB. If that’s not San Jose they’ve concluded that it’s the Coliseum site.

  71. At least until Oakland drives them away completely which seems to be the course they’re on in this game of chicken with the A’s.

  72. Then he shouldn’t have bought the Oakland A’s. If Lew Wolff can’t figure out a way to build in Oakland then he should sell the franchise and move aside and let someone else do the job. The Oakland A’s are part of the civic fabric of Oakland and the East Bay. This isn’t Lew Wolff’s hardware store or John Fisher’s lemonade stand. Lew Wolff bought an Oakland civic asset and he should learn to respect that fact. You don’t toy with the emotions of people who spent decades supporting the Oakland A’s. You don’t disrespect generations of Oakland A’s fans just to increase the occupancy of your San Jose hotels.

  73. Dan,

    You know darn well that the 12th street Bart station is not “over a mile from Howard Terminal.”

  74. re: The Oakland A’s are part of the civic fabric of Oakland and the East Bay.

    …let’s take a look at how Oakland has shown its love for the A’s:

    * Ruined the stadium on behalf of the Raiders.
    * Spent $200 million on facilities improvements for the Raiders, $100 million facilities improvements for the Warriors, $0.00 on facilities improvements for the A’s.
    * Fired the city manager for daring to devise a new ballpark plan.
    * Refuses to do what pretty much every other MLB city has done and help pay for a stadium.
    * Keeps the team near the bottom in attendance every year, despite playoff-calibre teams.

    …Spare us, Elmano.

  75. re: If Lew Wolff can’t figure out a way to build in Oakland

    …You mean build in Oakland under Oakland’s conditions, which are, the owners give Oakland the same free-stadium deal that Frisco got, without regard for making any return on their investment and without regard for whether they will lose piles of money.

  76. Elmano, 12th St BART is exactly 1.2 miles from Howard Terminal. In the real world we don’t travel as the crow flies because human beings don’t have wings ;). But feel free to use your own money to build an elevated walkway directly from HT to 12th St.

  77. Elmano, and there you go again with the hotel business regarding San Jose. In what whacked out world do you think that a ballpark will significantly increase occupancy at any of the downtown hotels in San Jose? Baseball fans commute to games, they don’t fly in and visit. The only people staying in hotels because of ballparks are the players. Particularly outside any of the 3 big destination stadiums, Fenway, Wrigley and Yankee.

  78. EG, how about this? If HT is the most amazing site, then isn’t it up to Oakland to make that case? An EIR? People in the Oakland City Council sans their petty division? We all know YOU believe it is the site to end all sites, why don’t you have this argument with the City Council and beg them to get that EIR started? For now, it is not a site. It is a port that has toxic waste problems. A piece of land circled on a map, as Wolff himself would accurately say. No one is really refuting that with facts, yes? Conspiracy theories, however sexy they may be to you (“MLB knows that Wolff has his own scheme going on…”)are not facts.
    Elmano, you might want to stop assuming that everyone here is looking to crap on Oakland. Oakland getting a ballpark done is good for all of us who love watching this team and want to see them with a long-term future in the Bay Area – Oakland or San Jose. But Oakland’s ability to get this done is not very hopeful. We are, after all, celebrating Mt. Davis’ 19th birthday this year.

  79. EG:”HT makes the most sense for Oakland’s ROI”

    So Oakland will provide the funds for the whole ballpark? All the funds for infrastructure and/or clean up? What will they invest to have a return on investment?

    Is Oakland in a position to be using tax payer money on any of these projects?

    MLB and any other support is a business… Decisions will be made based on $$$ Civic Pride? now thats funny. Clorox CEO had a lot of civic pride when he moved jobs out of Oakland. SMH.

  80. I have been very critical of Lew Wolff at time’s as he has made himself and the organization he represents look bad on more then one occasion, but there is absolutely no excuse for the Oakland city council and what they did last week, and for all those that defend the Oakland politicians, saying they maybe protecting the tax paying citizens, well if that’s true let the people see the deal, put it out there for all off us to see,if it’s so bad. Oakland you should have taken a vote and stood by that vote, weather yes or no, not taking one and explaining that vote was inexcusable.

  81. Wow really freddy. hahaha

    new grass, paint, repaved access rd and new cushions in the dug out! what did that cost? $100 hahah “Shut up A’s those improvements are the same as building mount davis and remodeling the arena!”

    I wish i was the contractor for doing those 4 things. Would of cleared a cool $300 million.

  82. Dan,

    Stop saying that the 12th street Bart station is 1.2 miles from where a ballpark would be located in Jack London Square.

    The exit of the Bart station is at 11th Street which is .06 miles to the Jack London Square sign at the foot of Broadway.

    This just proves that you can’t have a serious discussion with folks who make stuff up.

  83. @k- Wolff made the statement he would sit down and share his info before Selig issued a gag order on everyone involved.

    Wolff did before the tag order sit down with athletics nation and had discussions in detail why Fremont failed at both sites. He only spoke in minor details on HT. You should look up his 3 part interview from 2009, he speaks candidly about this. Chris Townsend is an idiot media guy like Ray Ratto.

    Agreed there is too much talk and not enough action from Oakland. I believe the coil site could work if Oakland lets the raiders leave. As long as they share the coli won’t work. It’s not simple to build in the parking lot.

    Wolff needs development rights or a flat out public subsidy to make this work. San Jose he needs neither as he has corporations and affluent fans and a downtown site on your cheap.

  84. Wolff gets to build on the land. Oakland pays for infrastructure improvements. The return on investment is that the waterfront and downtown benefit much more from 30,000 fans per date than would an area near the Coliseum.

  85. Oh god, the hypocrisy of this guy telling other people that they’re making shit up is giving me an aneurysm.

  86. freddy: The Warriors and Raiders have received entirely new facilities, massive new construction. The arena was completely gutted with nothing old left but the outer shell. The Raiders got Mount Davis. The A’s got cosmetic improvements – lipstick on a pig. No comparison

  87. Except HT doesn’t matter. Bud Selig said it’s not happening and baseball is ultimately the decider of where their teams play. Maybe if the City or some of the boosters wanted to do studies they could make a case for it but without those, there’s no hope.

    As for measurements, according to Google Earth, the JLS sign is not .06 miles from 11th and Broadway, it’s .52 miles. That’s fine as far as it goes, but the stadium won’t be built by the sign. The glossy sketches released last fall show it to be in the NW corner of the Howard terminal parcel. Using Google Earth again, that’s another .56 miles walking along Embarcadero. I ultimately cut through the parcel diagonally, assuming that there might be corridors.

    Right now, the neighborhood isn’t really downtown, it’s an industrial neighborhood north of JLS. That’s not much of an improvement over their current environment although putting it on the water let’s Oakland once again try to copy San Francisco.

  88. @elmano

    I have to disagree with u…unless the city of Oakland taxpayers or Knauss actually pay for infurscture and EIR on Howard Terminal then the Coliseum site is the best site. Now I for one will agree to give the Raiders the Coliseum..but the Raiders management must agree as part of the deal must leave some land open for the A’s to build a temp ballpark or legit ballpark

  89. pjk – Really? You do know there is a running joke that any team threatening to move should just pack up for SJ, right?

    This whole thing has caused a continuous divide in the fan base for years, which is exactly what they want. I urge all pro-Oaklanders to stop reading and posting on this website. Doing so only furthers the SJ agenda.

  90. The distance from the 11th St BART portal to the JLS sign is 0.55 miles. It’s another 0.28 miles to the expensive Howard Terminal build site, 0.5 miles to the cheap site. Call it a mile. That doesn’t include the pedestrian bridge that will have to be built to properly accommodate both pedestrians and trains running on the Embarcadero.

    There are around 2,500 parking spaces in lots and garages within 1/2 mile of Howard Terminal, including the JLS, Washington St, and Harrison St. (Amtrak) garages. That is nowhere near enough especially because BART is a mile away. New infrastructure would have to include a large new garage to cater to VIPs and team – at least 1,000 spaces.

  91. ML: regarding your thesis – a rift opens between Oakland and Alameda County – I might not read this lack-of-decision that way. The rift isn’t between these entities as many of their players hit for both teams. Start with Nate Miley and work down the scorecard. Who are they playing for?

    Nate’s crocodile tears – so bummed he can’t release the details until the cement boots are strapped on. Color us suspicious.

    The rift – or rifts – run far deeper. Usually discussed in confidence. Hot potatoes. Bear in mind it’s election season – don’t believe a thing.

    “$0.00 on facilities improvements for the A’s.”

    True or false? What passes for fact or fiction here?

    A waterfront park in Oakland could work, if everyone got on the same page and wanted it to work, but everyone’s full of themselves so it’s not going to happen. The battle for that land is interesting history. Southern Pacific.

    Last weekend I climbed the real Mt Davis, 12,303. No fiction up there.

    • freddy wrote: “A waterfront park in Oakland could work, if everyone got on the same page and wanted it to work, but everyone’s full of themselves so it’s not going to happen.”

      That could be amended to:
      “Coliseum City in Oakland could work, if everyone got on the same page and wanted it to work, but everyone’s full of themselves so it’s not going to happen.”

      Anything else? Miley and Reid had a joint press conference six weeks ago. Nothing has fundamentally changed. Stop looking at motivations and understand that the numbers are killing the deal(s), not the people. The numbers, or the lack of willingness to acknowledge them, are forcing the City and County to act out. In the end it still boils down to the numbers. It doesn’t get much simpler than that.

  92. ML: Is EG actually Navigator unmasked? The general disconnect from reality was knawingly familiar, but it wasn’t until he said “civic fabric” that I made the connection.

    • @bartleby – That’s him. He hasn’t been unmasked, he goes by a few names. If the flamefests keep going, I may have to do something about it. It becomes tiresome quickly.

  93. @EG “They “ruled out” Howard Terminal because Wolff and Fisher want to be in San Jose. It’s a great site but MLB knows that Wolff has his own scheme going on and Howard Terminal as an open option interferes with Wolff’s leverage and ultimate plans. Simple as that.”

    So your theory is, the same MLB that could make a San Jose ballpark a reality with a simple vote and stroke of a pen, but instead has been stalling the process and upholding Giants’ T-rights for five years, is now supporting the Coliseum site over Howard Terminal as part of some grand conspiracy to get the A’s to San Jose?

    You do realize that’s crazy, right?

  94. ML: “Coliseum City in Oakland could work… but it’s not going to happen”

    Yep, no argument here. I’ll see you and raise:

    10 more years in crumbling O.co could work, if everyone got on the same page….

    And that’s where we stand. Sad.

    If you’re a programmer (I’m a programmer) and your trying to sort this out with logic, it’s not going happen. There’s some sociology at play.

    You going to any of the Giants games?

  95. Marine Layer,

    The site is once again all yours and purely for the use and enjoyment of the San Jose supporters. Why not just change the name of the blog to “newsanjoseballpark.” At least you would be honest with yourself and with the fans. Good luck. You don’t have to censore me like last time. I’ll gladly leave myself.

    • @Mr Oakland – Actually I was considering killing comments completely, not your presence. Stay and flame away as long as you like. BTW, look up the word moderation in the dictionary. You might learn something.

  96. @ML
    I would certainly understand why, but please don’t kill the comment section.

  97. If people want a civil discussion, they should stop making up crap that’s completely biased. I see EG complaining about Wolff being given a positive push from his ol’ frat buddy Bud but if Selig was really trying to help Wolff all along we wouldn’t be in the same position we’ve been in for the five years the BRC has existed. There’d already be a ballpark built somewhere else.

    The crime rate thing is hardly even worth paying attention to, but do you really want to know why there’s more crime directly around AT&T Park than there is around the Coliseum? Look no further than what surrounds both places and how many people hang out at each site before and after games. You’ll find your answer there. Doing anything with a new ballpark for the A’s that increases reasons to stick around the stadium will increase various types of crimes.

    As for start-ups moving to Oakland because it’s cheaper than San Jose, San Francisco, etc. – is that really the best way to try to prove a point? Those start-ups can’t afford to do business where most of the tech sector is located, so the fact it costs less to do it in Oakland is a positive that’s going to trickle down to the A’s when it comes to sponsorships and corporate support? Good luck, I guess.

    When it comes to ballpark sites, we need the Howard Terminal EIR. If Knauss & Co. love the spot so much, if the City of Oakland does too, then let’s see the proof that it will be feasible for the owners of the A’s to build there. I have a feeling Oakland supporters won’t like what we find out if we ever get to that point with HT.

    So, by process of elimination of all other viable sites in Oakland (viable being used very generously), we’re left with the Coliseum location itself. We’re left with two teams that want deals that benefit them more than the other one.

    Mark Davis wants to tear down the Coliseum ASAP and build, with no care over what happens to the A’s, yet Wolff is the one accused of trying to run the Raiders out of town with the lease proposal? In what way does the A’s ending up with a new lease prevent the Raiders from building, especially if the lease includes provisions and out clauses specifically detailing that? (Allegedly)

    We have people demanding Wolff bend over backwards to the City of Oakland, guarantee this, that and the other when it comes to staying and building, when the A’s have been treated like secondary residents ever since the city and county did all they could to lure the Raiders back to Oakland. Meanwhile, Mt. Davis? Now even the Raiders tarp that thing off! Great investment that was!

    It may be the Coliseum site remains the best spot to build a new stadium (or maybe two, but good luck with that) simply because it’s the only one that comes with built-in space. The problem is a new ballpark alone is unlikely to solve all the attendance issues long-term. The area around the Coliseum site MUST be developed and built up to make it more of a destination for fans and casual people alike. That means the industrial areas around it have to change. Will that happen? I have no idea.

    What I do know is if the City of Oakland, the County of Alameda, and the Oakland A’s are going to thrive, they must all be on the same page. I’ll believe that one when I see it. So far, each “side” seems to be looking out for its own best interests. Not unexpected, but then again it’s no wonder we’re only marginally closer to a new ballpark being built somewhere as more time goes by.

    Is that all Lew Wolff’s fault? Clearly, as much as the stAy crowd will claim otherwise, the answer is no.

    By the way, Wolff has made it very clear he has no interest in moving the team out of the Bay Area. It’s evident he sees ownership in the A’s as a sort of legacy project, expecting others in the family to continue once he’s no longer around. Rather than celebrating that, some fans still tear him apart solely because they believe he despises Oakland and only wants to be in San Jose.

    Guess what? If you want the A’s to stay in Oakland, you’d better throw your weight behind something getting worked out on the Coliseum site at this point. That’s the best hope right now. If it comes down to one team or the other, let the Raiders walk. They’re the ones who bailed on Oakland the first time. That may be one of the hard decisions the city and county has to make, but that’s part of what they’re elected and paid for.

  98. @James V. Your points are well stated. With Lew Wolff willing to give the Coliseum site a second look, Oakland officials are really foolish to play favoritism to the Raiders with their apparently unrealistic CC stadium plans.

  99. @ James V.
    No problem with your summation of the situation, on point and valid.

  100. Marine Layer, one last thing. I was completely civil on this site and it was the San Jose supporters who attacked me personally with name calling such as “ignorant, STFU,” etc.

    What you call “flaming” is just the OAKLAND A’s fans side of the coin. If a site can’t handle decent then it’s neither fair or interesting and loses credibility. There’s a reason very few OAKLAND A’s fans comment on this site. It’s the intimidation, the name calling, and the censoring.

    Good luck and maybe I’ll see you in a few years when the A’s have secured their future in Oakland. Thanks to everyone who has been cordial and respectful.

    • @nav – Are you really crying victim after trolling this place? How so very much like you. Later.

  101. @ llpec
    I don’t disagree with you, but we really don’t know, if Lew is willing to give the coliseum a second look, do we? He could be just saying that, to get a little maneuverability, on the other hand if Mark Davis is serious about building (that’s a big if), then Oakland should go with him.
    Oakland has put the A’s last every time they had the opportunity, sadly enough but if Mark Davis is for real, this may be the one and only time Oakland should go with the Raiders over the A’s, of course I make this point with the assumption that Mark Davis is willing to build a new coliseum.
    I guess what I‘m saying is Oakland should go with whomever will make a real commitment to build at the site, again assuming eather the Raiders or A’s will make that commitment. If Mark is not serious, or can’t pull it off, then go with Lew, in the hopes that by the mere circumstances, he will have little choice, but to build at the current site.
    It’s sort of odd, in that you may have an owner (with other choices) that wants the site in Davis, but may not have all the necessary resources, to pull it off, and an owner in Wolff that does not want the site (with plenty of resources), but may have little to no choice but to go with it.

  102. @ML
    if or when Oakland sides with Raiders/Colony Capital. .I was wondering if Laney College would be a good spot for a temp ballpark for the A’s

    • @harry – You’d have to ask the Laney/Peralta people about that.

      Lil Bartolo used to run OaklandFans.com. It ceased to be active some time after I started my blog. She may still be fixated on some incident when someone faked her name in the comments. She thought that I did it. Like I have time for that.

  103. @ML
    I FOUND TONY D. lol..these guy has been giving Neil Demacuse from “Fieldofschemes” headaches on the comment board.(that dude Neil is pillow sensitive on his comment board)(chuckle)….no wonder tony d hasn’t been around…lol…and who is Lilian Bartholo??? She has it in for u ml…seems to be someone from the past….care to elaborate????

  104. Damn took the rest of yesterday off and was gonna respond back to @slacker and see we all had some fun on here.

    I agree with you but its not forcing Lew to do anything just like Lakeshore just said Lew doesn’t have to build there, you guys are acting like there saying he must build there, all they are doing is gathering the fact to show Lew and MLB in 2014 it is possible to build there for much cheaper than he thinks or was originally stated in the early 2000’s. They want to show that and get Lew and MLB a alternative option. Lew has only said its not feasible because of cost… Ok legit reason. But if cost are way cheaper than he thinks for the cleanup and infrastructure and the city gets there act together and says hey Lew we will take care of clean up and infrastructure and it only comes out to about 500-600 million to build his park, its kinda like why not. All of Lews concerns would have been addressed and proven out of date. There is no need for Lew to make a threat to have the City force a group independent of CC to stop there research on the site, unless it is possible.

    I think the A’s can make money @ HT but it needs to be and should be helped out by the city as well for infrastructure etc. and yes check history this is the first time in 10 + years Lew has mentioned Oakland being possible. before and since he bought the team it has always been SJ. People on here claim he tried the parking lot at coliseum but that was set up to fail before and he said that in regards to eminent domain that the city was willing to do but Lew balked and admitted he new it wasn’t gonna work from the start. So yes a 10 year deal that will kick the Raiders out is a non starter because he truly is waiting for the SJ lawsuit to pan out to make his next move, all evidence and history points to that if you are looking at this situation with a open scope.

  105. I think the Oakland-only folks don’t like this site because they have defaulted to the “A’s owners are rich meanies, Oakland is an innocent victim” belief system. When they come on here and hear about Oakland’s massive disregard for the team, it flies in the face of their “Oakland as victim” belief.

  106. James V, I heard a mic drop after that thing man. Well said on all counts.

  107. K if you’re looking at things with an open scope you wouldn’t disregard that Wolff actually did try to get 66th north done. It wasn’t just a PR move. And the Coliseum parking lot was explored but in a stunning turn of events it was the Warriors and Raiders who cock blocked that move. History really does repeat itself.

  108. @K I agree. Ideally Lew wants the A’s in San Jose because he can make the most money there.

    I’m not knocking the ownership group for this but, I think they’d rather stay at the Coli on revenue sharing if they can’t have San Jose. From a pure dollars and cents perspective they’ll make more money this way.

    Besides corporate support, like it or not, Oakland will always be in SF’s shadow. San Jose is as well to a certain extent, but largely because of BART, San Jose has been more removed from SF than the East Bay. Also, the South Bay simply has more people. The A’s have a better chance at expanding their fan base in San Jose than they do in Oakland even under the best of circumstances.

    This isn’t a knock on Oakland. Just like all cities, Oakland has it’s bad parts and it’s good parts. The problem is that the overall area lacks corporate support and the Giants have done an excellent job of grabbing the East Bay fans. Sure it’s anecdotal, but check BART traffic and you’ll see that a lot more people are taking BART from the East Bay to Giants games than they are to A’s games. A weekday daytime Giants game impacts the East Bay BART commute. A weekday daytime A’s game doesn’t even register.

    If HT costs have come down significantly and if the city can make the necessary infrastructure improvements than absolutely the A’s need to consider the site. The problem is that without the EIR or an infrastructure plan from the city it’s not an option right now. The ball is in Oakland’s court on this.

    I’m a life long East Bay resident and would much prefer for the A’s to stay in Oakland. Ultimately though I want the A’s to say in the Bay Area and I think their best chance for success in the Bay Area is San Jose.

  109. @DAN http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/A-s-owner-unveils-stadium-plans-2648633.php

    “Wolff said he was not advocating the use of eminent domain to get the property”

    He speaks on not using eminent domain in the unveiling of this supposed project and not even 4 months later he kills this project because mainly the use of eminent domain, along with other reason such as Raiders and A’s but did he even talk to the teams from what i have seen and heard. NO but guess what between those 4 months starting at the unveiling he was talking to Fremont with the likes of Wasserman and one of the shady characters that sits on the JPA Scott Haggerty. so to say he tried its far fetched, Lew even admitted he had been in talks with Haggerty since 2004 about Fremont. That little presentation was for show and history proves that. Lew has been going after SJ for over 10 years but he half ass’ed and just tried to cross a T and show MLB he tried Oakland for 4 months.

  110. @Slacker me either he feels his ROI will better suit him in SJ and as a business person bottom line is the dollar, thats his business but my perspective all along is that it can work in Oakland as well, if done right on all sides. City helping with cost for HT or CC. You are spot on and that so many Giants fans cross that bridge and go threw that tunnel, I feel HT is better off to be the best stadium in MLB and is a way better option for the City, as the restaurant scene and night life and proximity to all the workers in the downtown area. You can and also will get that causal fan or out of towner more likely in a better area such as a downtown in any city than in Deep East Oakland. That’s why I advocate more for the HT spot, if CC gets built yea it would price and push some of the idiots out of the area but there is only so much you can do and build to cure that whole area and stigma that people believe is associate with that area, and that keeps them from coming and attending games.

  111. @Slacker and for the EIR I agree the OWB group advocating it and pushing it paid some coin for the renderings and have stated in the paper they raised money for the EIR and other such test and study’s better be doing that as we speak or there is no merit to what they tout. They tout it they need to back it up with facts and study’s, they have about a year to do so. we shall see

  112. K, don’t underestimate the good a stadium can have on an area if there is a concerted effort. San Diego is a prime example of that. The Gaslamp area was the city’s shady red light district and the east village was an industrial slum that looked much like the area around the Coliseum before the city made a concerted push to clean the area up which included building Petco Park. Now it’s arguably the best example of a beautiful stadium that meshes with the surrounding community seamlessly (far more so than even China Basin). Not saying a ballpark at the Coliseum site would be quite as successful, but it could definitely make the area better and odds are it wouldn’t end up being another Turner Field.

  113. @ K
    I won’t go so far as to say “Lew lied he never tried”, but I do find it amusing that so many (including some here), fill that Lew gave a real effort in Oakland. IMHO the day Lew gives a real effort in Oakland will be the first day it happened, not that the politicians in Oakland deserve a real effort, in fairness to Lew if he wanted to give a real effort in Oakland it may not matter, considering the ineptitude that is pervasive in Oakland city government.
    As the Woman that raised me (grate aunt), would say: “This is a mixed up mess”

  114. @Dan you are right, I haven’t been to that area since 06 for the World Baseball classic so it has been a while, L.A live is what they are trying to mimic on “steroids” if it gets built I hope the steroids part is true and trickles down all the way to the airport. L.A live to me still feels as its missing something surrounding the area, even though I feel the coliseum area location and scenery in Oakland is better than the L.A area as the access to Bart, waterfront area, and ease of on and off the freeway, while not all being cluttered and congested with so much over kill of preexisting buildings etc. CC needs to feel like another downtown atmosphere and not just being in a en caged surrounding complex, if that makes sense.

  115. @Lakeshore agreed it he may have tried but in mine and many others it was half hart effort. He said privately financed this privately financed that North parking lot, while talking to Fremont the whole time and already stating he wanted SJ. If it was good then, whats stopping him now from investing money, the city owns even more of the land than when he tried, didn’t seem like he was worried about infrastructure then, which I still believe the city has to bare the cost. The city is a whole issue in its own and with the JPA involved collecting paychecks only adds to the craziness, I feel the JPA needs to be bought out so there can be one voice on the city side and one voice on the sports teams side, everyone has there vendetta and personal goals out of this, Nate Miley = ASS who is about himself and Scott Haggerty quietly a crooked ASS, example below and if you watched that video you see why he was called out by that Raider fan at the meeting because he has been sabotaging and doing crooked business for ever now.


  116. All I see is lots of BS but no actions.

    Where is the freaking plan?
    Where is the freaking money ?
    Wgere is the freaking EIR for any place?
    Where is freaking Jean Quan and the elected critters?
    Sure they all show their freaking faces when news broke buy in hiding when they had to take a vote.

    Lots of BS, that’s all

  117. @K- Wolff was hired as part of the Schott/Hoffman regime as a VP of Venue Development in 2003. Wolff was the one tasked to find a site to build in the East Bay looking at Oakland first.

    Wolff had a reputation of developing and building projects when it was first thought impossible. His resume speaks for itself.

    Schott hired Wolff because he failed trying build in the Coliseum parking lot because of the Raiders/Warriors and before that had the JPA reneged on his deal to renovate the Coliseum for baseball because of the Raiders returning.

    Poor Schott got screwed twice trying to build/renovate at the Coliseum…..How Pro-Oakland people forget.

    Wolff went after 66th Ave or Coliseum North project because he knew building in the Coli parking lot was impossible. So he tried to do something out of the box and Oakland at the time was OK using eminent domain.

    Turns out most of the 70 business owners were not in on this and Oakland backed away from using eminent domain on them.

    Problem Oakland had was if they used ED they would have to offer comparable relocation sites for these businesses and they had none.

    Wolff looked at Howard Terminal at that time and that was as ML puts it the “cheaper site” that was further inland and did his research and found it was not feasible back then.

    When Wolff bought the A’s he knew Oakland was not feasible from his prior work for Schott so he went after Fremont, which was sad on how it died but it did with good reasons.

    Now here we are today, Wolff has been at it for 11 years trying to get a ballpark for the A’s. He exhausted every option in his territory and has 227 pages of notes to prove it.

    People think Wolff did not try in Oakland, the fact of the matter is between him and Schott they have tried multiple times and failed.

    Now Wolff sees the Coliseum site might be feasible because the Warriors are OTW out and the Raiders are on their last leg with a nice option in Santa Clara that awaits them.

    If the Raiders/Warriors leave he would have Oakland by the balls for the first time and can start making some demands. This is why he wants a 10 year lease with out clauses.


    If San Jose loses lawsuit but the Raiders/Warriors leave he can have the Coli to himself and has leverage on Oakland.

    If San Jose wins lawsuit, he is out and has leverage on Oakland to “drop their pants”….Still leaves to San Jose unless Oakland comes through with a huge public subsidy.

    If San Jose loses lawsuit, Raiders built in Coliseum leaving the A’s homeless, he moves team to ATT Park and sits on the Giants heads until they scream “uncle” and let him move to San Jose.

    A’s only stay in Oakland if the Raiders leave.

  118. One last scenario:

    San Jose wins lawsuit, Raiders build at Coliseum, A’s move to ATT Park and their rent/revenue sharing to the Giants for 3-4 season serves as payment for moving to San Jose.

  119. Well LA Live suffers from one handicap that Coliseum City or a Wolff development at the Coliseum wouldn’t suffer from. It has the misfortune of being in downtown LA. Downtown LA is primarily a financial center, not a social center. It’s not unlike the Financial district of SF or San Diego in that regard, only unlike SF or SD, LA’s downtown doesn’t have any lively socially centered areas adjoining it like SoMa or San Diego’s Gaslamp, that keeps the human traffic heavy even after all the office workers have gone home for the day.

    I was just up in downtown LA a few weeks ago on a non-game Friday night and the place was dead at 9pm other than a few drunken suits wandering the streets after a couple of big business meetings. The center of LA nightlife according to folks I know who live there is up in the Hollywood area. And if the traffic on 101 heading north through downtown to Hollywood even late at night was any indication they’re not wrong. The Coliseum development (whomever ends up developing it) would be more akin to something like Santa Row in San Jose but with a ballpark if they do it right. It would be a destination unto itself.

  120. @Sid yes he was tasked to do so but check out Lews history beyond 2003 when he was hired. 1998 Lew is quoted with in regards to the A’s “If I was going to pursue a ballpark, I would certainly do it in San Jose, not depend on a vote outside of San Jose, and I would work through the mayor and the Redevelopment Agency,” said Lew Wolff, a key figure in San Jose’s downtown renaissance. “It’s the difference between a big-league city and a nonbig-league city. I wouldn’t spend five minutes on any other city besides San Jose.” Not knocking him that’s his view due to all of his relationships and investments in SJ, but that’s his belief.

    Schott got a lot of kick backs/ renegotiated lease from the city due to Mt Davis and he knew when he bought the team about the raiders returning and the changes to the stadium and causing a conflict with baseball revenue. So the terms etc was all worked out with Haas and the city, long before Lew entered the picture, So how easy dates and fact get mixed up from the pro SJ people.

    Also why would Schott put his team for sale less than three years after buying the A’s ? Because he couldn’t move to Sana Clara by Great America his plan all along as well(Silicon Valley.)

    So all in all the A’s have been cursed with back to back owners since Haas who don’t care about the product, city or community but only a huge profit for there toys. Here is a few articles for all, documented from history and this history of facts can’t be changed, no matter how you want to spin it.


    • @K – Schott was told that the Coliseum was considering putting a new Raiders’ stadium across the Nimitz from the existing Coliseum. That would’ve allowed Schott to continue while seeking out the next ballpark, whether in the A Lot or in the South Bay. When the JPA made the deal to build Mt. Davis, Schott felt betrayed. He made the lease deal, then sued when he felt the effects were even worse. The matter went to arbitration and Schott won, the package including advertising and concessions control.

      Wolff explored the Malibu/HomeBase sites in 2003, hoping for JPA help. He was denied. The JPA bought those lots several years later for Coliseum City. Since around 2002, Schott had a standing offer to build in Coliseum parking lot and would provide $100 million towards the construction.

  121. @DAN 100% agree went there to all the Warrior Lakers games and Warrior Clipper playoff games and have a friend that lives downtown, besides a bar hear and there, really old buildings and flies flying in your mouth it’s totally dead, it’s like its L.A Live or get in your car and go somewhere else, sounds familiar right, but at least L.A Live has a few bars and something to do/ Lucky Strike. If CC gets built hopefully there smart enough to have took that into consideration.

  122. @Dan Don’t necessarily disagree with your characterization of downtown LA overall, though I think it’s getting better. However, I can’t for the life of me see how it’s any easier at the Coliseum site.

    Downtown LA at least has the following advantages: (1) of lots of people there during the workday who might stick around if a critical mass of entertainment attractions gets built, (2) an increasing number of professional people living there, (3) some interesting architecture and historic sites that could be incorporated into entertainment zones, (4) a number of hotels and a convention center business that bring out-of-towners in, and (5) a few theatres and cultural attractions. The Coli site has none of that; quite the contrary, it needs to convince people to travel there in spite of (currently) its ugly industrial nature and crime. Maybe that could be changed if you pour enough money into it, though others have failed and there are no guarantees. However, it seems much more of an uphill climb for the Coli area than downtown LA faces.

  123. @ K
    Facts only seem to matter to some, when they work against Oakland. I have said it many times this is a three city (San Francisco , Oakland, San Jose), two team (Athletics, Giants), one league (MLB), high wire soap-opera, and it really does not have room for Oakland, or Lew Wolff apologists, because there is dirty hands all the way around.
    Come to think of it I may have to revise that statement to include two leagues (NFL), with what’s going on between the A’s and Raiders at coliseum, that would be something, the NFL and MLB fighting over what some see as worthless land in east Oakland, only because each league felt as though the other was pushing one of its members out.
    Hay that’s sort of like all those girls competing for the affection of Flavor Flav, then I think it was Hoops that one out, and she realized “Oh yeah this is what I was competing for, I forgot no thanks” I think the (disastrous) show was call Flavor of Love on VH1 or something.

  124. “One last scenario:

    San Jose wins lawsuit, Raiders build at Coliseum, A’s move to ATT Park and their rent/revenue sharing to the Giants for 3-4 season serves as payment for moving to San Jose.”

    I’ve always believed that this scenario made the most sense. However, I would think that the Raiders would likely be playing at Santa Clara for at least five plus years before a new Coliseum deal could be worked out. With the A’s moving to San Jose and the Warriors to San Francisco, the Raiders would eventually gain the best leverage to work out a new stadium deal with Oakland officials.

  125. The last scenario seems plausible: Concerning proof of a stadium deal between San Jose and the A’s: SJ mayor Reed was going to use a measure seeking voter approval for infrastructure work required for the A’s ballpark ($21 mil. – I believe) Selig instructed Reed not to go through with the measure. It would be hard to believe that MLB could request that San Jose not go through with necessary steps for ballpark construction – then claim there is no evidence that San Jose and the A’s are planning the Cisco Field ballpark.

    Furthermore, each instance that MLB loses a case concerning its ATE in court – that creates more precedence against the MLB ATE – weakening it further.

  126. @muppet- thx for the info- guess we will see if bs has grown any balls over,the past,5 years to call bullshit on Oakland- sometimes giving folks just enough rope to hang themselves is all it takes- Oakland is right there believing it has all the leverage-

  127. The most interesting tidbit is the possibility of a counter offer on Thursday. If this offer is made public (I’m sure we’ll know much of it by Friday at worst) and Oakland’s counter is mostly financial, it may be a sign they’re at least open to the idea of choosing the A’s over the Raiders. If they continue to insist on guaranteeing all 10 years and insisting on development options being guaranteed we’ll know nothing has changed and all they want is to continue kicking the can down the road. I’m sure that’s what they want to do anyway, but it might be better to reserve judgment.

    If the council puts out an offer that doesn’t include guaranteeing the full 10 years and a new Oakland park, I can’t wait to see how that gets spun.

  128. What’s crazy here though is Kaplan negotiated the original agreement, which has since been modified, so I essence she will be voting against what she worked out- talk about being FUBAR’d

  129. By rule Kaplan has to vote how the council tells her to vote. There is no rule that gives the council the power to prevent a quorum – that was pathetic. We can expect lots of grandstanding by Reid, but I’m much more curious to see how carefully Kaplan chooses her words when she talks. She may come out in favor while voting against. So yeah, FUBAR.

  130. I will be more interested to see the reaction of Selig (and any Future Commissioner) if this Scenario happens: The A’s win the World Series, the Raiders start the Season poorly, and Quan is Re-Elected. By the way, would ANYONE (even EG) really want to see Quan’s face at an A’s Victory Parade? I wonder how they could even consider the A’s actually getting a decent New Stadium deal with that woman AFTER she won (even if the Raiders moved to Santa Clara or LA)? I could see San Jose’s odds of landing the A’s, going up about 100 fold under this Scenario,

  131. @ GoA’s
    I was thinking the same thing, Kaplan worked on this and Wolff talked glowingly about her, so what gives.

  132. @K- Your links are interesting for these reasons:

    -Wolff said his San Jose comments in 1998, well before he became VP of Venue Development in 2003 for the A’s. You cannot use a statement from well before he even joined the club. Why people think this is relevant makes me scratch my head since Wolff wasted 24M (16M non-recoverable) on land in Fremont. He tried in the East Bay well after he made this statement.

    -Your article on Oakland/JPA trying made me laugh. They stated a new ballpark had to be heavily privately financed. This after these same people spilled over 100s of millions for the Raiders and Warriors? Its hypocrisy at it’s finest by the JPA/Oakland. Even then they refused to help the A’s and nothing has changed.

    -Schott from the get go got screwed by the JPA from the get go from the moment he got the team. Your article on the sale clearly shows that. If you were Schott what would you do?

    I for one would be so mad at Oakland I would try to move the team as the stadium was ruined for baseball guaranteeing low revenue for years to come.

    Oakland/JPA didn’t even offer some kind of subsidy like they did with the Warriors/Raiders to help pay for construction. They treat the A’s like the step child while the Warriors/Raiders get what they want.

    Even so, Schott offered a 100M to build in the parking lot around 2002. He still wanted to make it work but it fell on “deaf ears” from the JPA who knew the Warriors/Raiders were against it.

    Oakland/JPA do not deserve the A’s period. It is sad it has come to this and all these shenanigans continue to mount. They had their chance…..actually they had multiple but refuse to face reality.

  133. @K- Your links are interesting for these reasons:

    -Wolff said his San Jose comments in 1998, well before he became VP of Venue Development in 2003 for the A’s. You cannot use a statement from well before he even joined the club. Why people think this is relevant makes me scratch my head since Wolff wasted 24M (16M non-recoverable) on land in Fremont. He tried in the East Bay well after he made this statement.

    -Your article on Oakland/JPA trying made me laugh. They stated a new ballpark had to be heavily privately financed. This after these same people spilled over 100s of millions for the Raiders and Warriors? Its hypocrisy at it’s finest by the JPA/Oakland. Even then they refused to help the A’s and nothing has changed.

    -Schott from the get go got screwed by the JPA from the get go from the moment he got the team. Your article on the sale clearly shows that. If you were Schott what would you do?

    I for one would be so mad at Oakland I would try to move the team as the stadium was ruined for baseball guaranteeing low revenue for years to come.

    Oakland/JPA didn’t even offer some kind of subsidy like they did with the Warriors/Raiders to help pay for construction. They treat the A’s like the step child while the Warriors/Raiders get what they want.

    Even so, Schott offered a 100M to build in the parking lot around 2002. He still wanted to make it work but it fell on “deaf ears” from the JPA who knew the Warriors/Raiders were against it.

    Oakland/JPA do not deserve the A’s period. It is sad it has come to this and all these shenanigans continue to mount. They had their chance…actually they had multiple but refuse to face reality.

  134. @lsn- didn’t realize, until muppet stated it above, that she was bound by rule to vote the way council directs her- agree with muppet her words should tell her story since her vote can’t

  135. What I’m finding funny this morning is all the papers and articles (like the one on the front page of ballparkdigest.com) stating the lease is going to be approved on Thursday that are ignoring the reports that the city is going to vote the lease down instead. This thing is far from over if Oakland kills the lease tomorrow.

  136. agreeDan- SS tweeted that LW said he and MLB felt lease was 100% done last week- not sure if he is implying that no more discussions if Oakland rejects it or what- but assume the A’s will only deal with so many bait and switches

  137. @ GoA’s
    Yep, I agree with you 100%.
    After looking over the agreement, I can understand why some fill that Oakland and Alameda county should try to get a better deal than this, but at this point anything they sign won’t be that grate, as a matter of fact I don’t think anything Oakland, or the A’s sign will be that grate, but it does cover the bare minimums for both sides.
    I am a little concerned, that the A’s could be at the coliseum for up to four years (if I am correct), before the Raiders could build at the current site, but who the hell knows if Mark Davis is even serious, who the hell knows anything about this mess.

  138. Of course nothing they sign will be that grate. Great agreements are usually signed on paper, or electronically.

  139. Good for LW- if I am a betting man I guess Oakland might do another no show as the article states they asked the JPA to cancel the meeting again.

  140. @ Dan
    Thanks “Great”. It would be “great” if MLB would get so upset, that they just gave San Jose to the A’s, but unfortunately that probably will not happen.

  141. The Giants should be allowed to intervene with Oakland officials to help close the deal. This could easily be done by telling Oakland officials that if the deal is not accepted as is, the Giants would allow the A’s to share AT&T Park until the A’s get their new ballpark, whether its in San Jose or anyplace else.

  142. @ llpec :

    It is so simple. BS and MLB should tell Oakland that they want X,Y and Z. Can Oakland deliver on X, Y and Z ? If not the A’s move to different location. That’s it. No negotiations.

    Stern did the same to Sacto. Stern wanted a new arena by 2017. Sacto delivered so the Kings stay.

    It is way past time to make a decision but unfortunately, BullShit is incompetent commish.

  143. Oakland officials aren’t being entirely irrational by telling both the A’s and Raiders to F-off.

    Other than civic pride and promotion, every study has shown sports teams provide very little economic benefit* to the city as a whole What would be “best” for Oakland is if all the teams disappeared and they could redevelop the Coliseum site for commercial and industrial use which will provide needed jobs to Oakland residents.

    (*Everyone loves the idea of an “entertainment district”, but even AT&T park supports no more than a handful of bars/restaurants. And the gentrification and redevelopment were in the works long before the stadium was proposed, and would happened anyway if perhaps more slowly.)

  144. At some point though you have to provide entertainment to your residents. Sports teams, movie theaters, etc… do that. And sports teams have a way of being a civic rallying point in addition to being entertainment. Sure you could simply put a strip mall at the Coliseum site but you continue to take away entertainment options you lessen the appeal of your city as a place to live. Oakland without things like the A’s is nothing but a larger crappier Fremont. Just another suburb of San Francisco and San Jose. And that’s if you buy the argument that stadiums don’t drive economic activity around them, which many people would dispute. Sure it’s not public dollars that are impacted positively, but ask those bars, resturants, parking lots, etc… how their economic activity would be negatively impacted without the park there.

    With Oakland though, you may be right. With nothing around the Coliseum to benefit financially from game days, and the city running the place at a loss, perhaps it would be in their best interest if the A’s pissed off. And if that’s the case, then stop this charade and just come out and say it so the A’s and their fans can get on with their lives in San Jose or elsewhere.

  145. @ Daniel
    I sure agree with you, but as we know MLB has boxed themselves in (with the A’s in the Bay Area), with NBA there are a number of places the Kings could have moved, not even including Seattle, which of course is where they would have been headed if Sacramento did not get its act together.
    Because of a true revenue sharing system (true-er), in the NBA and the natural population demands of MLB, being a little different than the NBA, the Kings could have been just fine in San Diego, Kansas City, perhaps even Baltimore (although the Washington is close), and maybe even Anaheim, to name a few.
    MLB has boxed itself in with the A’s situation, there is no easy fix (outside of San Jose),as we all know if there were, the A’s would have been gone long ago, even Portland or San Antonio is no slam dunk, because of the population needs, TV, and radio contracts of the teams in Seattle, Houston, and the Dallas metro, MLB just needs to stop the madness and let the A’s go to San Jose, which would be good for the Raiders because they could use the coliseum as they see fit, and it would keep the A’s in the Bay Area, not in Oakland but still in the Bay Area.

  146. Just for fun I ran the numbers. Assuming the reports are accurate. Feel free to check my math:

    Income:”Rent would drop to $1.25 million in 2015; $1.5 million for 2016 through 2019; and $1.25 million through 2024.” (Oakland Trib)


    Total: $13,500,000.00

    Epenses: “The Coliseum Authority would pay $1 million a year, with 5 percent annual increases, into a maintenance fund to fix the stadium problems” (SF Gate)


    Total: $12,577,892.53

    Net profit over 10 years:

    Divided by 81 games x 10 years, net profit (effective rent) per game:

    That won’t even cover the salaries for the cops at the games.

  147. Well that’s what happens when you let your facility fall into decay. Don’t act like Oakland didn’t do this to itself by not maintaining its stadium. If they’d wanted to turn a profit and charge the A’s a higher rate of rent they should have maintained the stadium in working order. They can’t expect the A’s to pay more for a stadium that is now of far less value due to their own disinterest.

  148. Freddy: If MLB doesn’t work for Oakland (we already know it doesn’t work for MLB because the team is heavily subsidized by the other teams), then perhaps its time to move the team somewhere else, no? Oakland can make a statement that being host to an MLB team is just not worth it and let the team move somewhere else. If not San Jose, then Vegas, Sacto, Montreal, Portland, Raleigh, NC. There will be a surprising multitude of relocation candidates once it’s clear its over in Oakland. Oakland can make a statement that it’s not going to be pushed around by MLB as it watches it’s team leave for good. I’m betting that if this lease is rejected, the team gets parked at ATT Park and MLB opens up bidding from multiple cities for a chance to get the team. All those people who needed that extra money working concessions, etc at A’s games in Oakland can go work at In and Out Burger or something.

  149. We see in that article more promo for Howard Terminal. MLB has already squashed Oakland’s plan to box the A’s into HT so the Raiders can have the Coliseum parking lot, but that is not going to stop the HT people from still pitching the many-times-rejected HT site.

  150. @ freddy
    Thanks, freddy. It’s easy to rip Oakland, lord knows I have done it enough myself, but your right on the specifics of the deal, it’s not like it’s a good deal for Oakland (not saying Oakland deserves a good deal), but if it were another Bay Area city taking, this deal the A’s would be receiving, what I think would be a lot more criticism, but because it is Oakland, and they have blown it so many times, the general attitude is like “Oakland should just take what it can get, and be happy”, I can see why people would have a problem with this lease, that being said, since Iam not a tax paying citizen of Oakland or Alameda county, I wish they would just get it done already.

  151. @pjk- MLB cannot simply “open up bidding” unless Wolff agrees to it. We all know he wants to keep the team in California as he and Fisher are Cali guys.

    Unlike Jeffrey Loria in Montreal who was American, Wolff/Fisher if they can own the team playing in ATT Park why sell?

    By moving to ATT Park it allows the A’s to cash in big time. They would all of a sudden have access to premium seating they sorely lack now.

    They could revenue share(70/30 or 80/20)and pay rent to the Giants on everything and would be able to add 40M in payroll easily with zero capital investment….they could keep their stars for once long term.

    This is my scenario of having the A’s sitting on top the of the Giants until they scream “Uncle” and let them into San Jose.

    Granted the Giants would be making oodles of extra cash sharing with the A’s but it would kill their psyche.

    Imagine the San Francisco Athletics winning the World Series at ATT Park? The pain would be so much they would give San Jose away.

    This is where we are heading unless San Jose wins one of their two current lawsuits vs. MLB which would entail a settlement where the A’s are allowed to move. A’s are stuck in the Bay Area for immediate 5-10 years. Question is where will they be in 10 years? ATT Park or San Jose?

    @Freddy-You forget the Raiders pay rent too so the JPA is making money and doing fine even giving concessions to the A’s.

    The A’s got massive concessions in 1996 going forward and that is why people think the deal is so bad. The JPA reneged from a written contract for the Raiders and lost big in court.

    People forget that and think the A’s should be paying more. In reality they got screwed and deserve the concessions the JPA is giving them.

  152. @ Sid
    Good point, people do forget that.

  153. Freddy, the team pays for the cops at games. But what you’re not including is the taxes collected from concessions, ticket sales, etc. for 81+ games.

    Flowmotion, While I agree with the studies, the only reason that’s the case is that typically the cities are shelling out hundreds of millions of dollars to make it happen killing any potential ROI by way of tax collection. You’re also collecting free tourist advertising every time your city’s name is mentioned. While that may not have a high value per se, I’m sure there are plenty of people around the world who may not have never heard of the city without it’s associations with their sports teams. Discounts on land and minimal infrastructure support can make a sports team deal well worth it for a city. The moment you start putting in large amounts of money into it, the returns quickly become negative.

  154. muppet, what I’d like to know more than anything is where the city was while these talks were going on the past 14 months. Did the other two fail to involve them until they made a deal or did the city fail to sit at the table after being invited to join in? If the former, then it was foolish of them to think Oakland wouldn’t have something to stay about it. If the latter, than that speaks to a wholesale lack of organization and professionalism by the city.

  155. dmoas, well it appears Kaplan and possibly Reid were involved so the city did have a hand in crafting the very agreement they now want to quash. What I’m wondering is if this isn’t some political game that the A’s are just secondary too. With Kaplan running against Quan, it behooves Quan to make Kaplan look bad. This “disconnect” between what Oakland wants and what the JPA negotiated does make it appear that Kaplan wasn’t keeping her colleague informed or the like. What is more likely IMO is that Quan knew that would be the end result and is taking the opportunity to throw Kaplan under the bus. Which frankly is something I hope Kaplan voices tomorrow.

  156. @Lakeshore/Neil, Oakland officials appear to be making a grave mistake if they think MLB is holding the A’s only to Oakland. Oakland officials are so myopic that they cannot even see ahead to where MLB could eventually approve the sale of the A’s to interests from another market. It’s also apparent that Oakland officials could care less about the A’s remaining within the Bay Area market, even if it means moving the A’s to San Jose in order to keep the team within the area.

  157. “What I’m wondering is if this isn’t some political game that the A’s are just secondary too.”

    Mayoral politics are a huge part of this story. For those of you following along, the campaign finance story that came out Kaplan was hit with allegedly came from the Libby Schaff campaign. Schaff comes across as a real hardliner when it comes to sports and money. Her involvement in killing the lease would not be shocking.

  158. @dmoas —
    I will agree with you that sports teams are great for promotion and branding your city as “major league”. That is why Oakland attracted the teams in the first place.

    But what good has it really done Oakland? There are very few major corporations in town celebrating the civic pride created by the A’s. I would even say the condition of the Coliseum creates the image that Oakland isn’t “major league” at all, and just perpetrates the image of the city being a dump or a ghetto.

    Everyone is so worked about about the baseball politics, they seem to forget that Oakland has a lot of serious, real problems. They need to expand their tax base and the number of jobs. They don’t have a spare billion (or any money) to give to a billionaire for free stadium. The song and dance can only go on so long, eventually the teams are going to leave.

  159. Depends on how Wolff wants to play it. No need to blow things up now, the A’s have a home for 2015 and he can wait to see if Kaplan is elected mayor, at which point she’ll have the muscle to force the deal through.

  160. And part of this whole “Coliseum City” process certainly involves the developers telling the city that the land is worth $X with a stadium and $Y without any stadiums. And that $Y > $X.

    Maybe, just maybe, City Hall finally is going to step up and admit they simply cannot afford to support major league sports. Perhaps the current real estate market is so hot someone made them an offer for the coliseum site they simply cannot refuse.

  161. @IIpec It does appear so, my friend.

  162. @Sid —
    “San Francisco Athletics” would certainly be an interesting outcome to this…

    (Or perhaps something more neutral like California Athletics or Golden State Athletics.)

  163. The A’s future will be decided shortly, I think. But in what manner and what outcome is entirely up in the air. If Oakland plays hard ball with MLB in order to “attack” Wolff (for lack of a better word), MLB won’t allow a city to strong arm them. We talk about precedence wrt to SJ suing them and not kowtowing to that. The same thing could end up happening here too. But as long as both bay area cities are doing this, the outcome won’t be good wrt to keeping the team in the area. You could see a couple of years of the A’s in ATandT as a means for MLB to send them out of town as part of the deal with the Giants for sharing.

  164. Wolff didn’t appear surprised with this latest Oakland SNAFU – the A’s must have other plans already in the works if the lease can’t be achieved.

  165. Realities have been lost in the blog.

    The Giants will not allow the A’s to play at ATT nor will the A
    s agree to play there. Selig cannot force it.

    The A’s have a great deal and they know it despite all of their complaining. They should shut up and enjoy the profits, but pigs whine a lot.

    The city will approve the deal and live with the subsidy.

    The Raiders do not have the funds or the talent to build a stadium. Otherwise they would move forward with their half of Coliseum City. They will move to LA if they can get a partner there or elsewhere. They have never been screwed by the JPA. They could have stayed in Oakland in 1981 with a renovated Coliseum but thought LA was better. We know what was done for them in 1996.

    The A’s will stay at the Coliseum until they get approval to go to San Jose or sell to interesta who move the team elsewhere. They could easily build at Coliseum city and be successful but they do not want to do so.

    The Coliseum is not a dump. The “sewer overflow” was caused by a sweat shirt put in the line. The subsequent “sewer spill” was rain water in the dugout which always happens since the dugouts are open to the weather. I was at ATT after a rain storm and their dugouts had puddles of water too. I have asked many people why they consider it a dump.Other than the falsified sewer issue, most say it does not have a view of the hills any more. I never get any other specifics. A lack of hill view does not make it a dump.

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