Selig pulls out move threat card, Oakland folds like cheap tent, JPA approves lease

Today had me driving from Toledo to Pittsburgh, so much of the time I was out of pocket or unable to catch up on news. Fortunately, I arrived at my planned midpoint as the JPA was convening for a vote. This is the place I visited:

The Ohio State Reformatory

The Ohio State Reformatory

Look familiar? It’s not a college campus or an old hospital. It’s the old Ohio State Reformatory, located in Mansfield, Ohio. It’s better known as the site for the filming of The Shawshank Redemption, the great Stephen King-Frank Darabont picture that no one saw in the theaters but everyone saw on cable. I toured the prison, which would’ve been demolished if not for the film’s production and belated popularity. Like the Coliseum, much of OSR is in a steady state of decay. And like the film’s climactic scene, our own green-and-gold clad heroes at times have forded a river of sewage to escape the facility. I recognize that forcing a team of millionaires owned by billionaires to stay in mediocre conditions is nothing like actual prison. The point is that writing this blog at times is my own personal prison, one that I seemingly can never escape (especially the comments section or fools on Twitter). However, I made a promise to see this through, so it’s being done. Every so often I allow myself to feel a little hope, the dangerous concept that Red cautions Andy to squelch. Even after 9 years and with no end in sight, I still hope. I can’t allow myself to be completely consumed by cynicism. There’s already one Miserablist in the Bay Area, no need for two.

My own vacation activities aside, there is reason for hope to come out of today. First, let’s recap.

  • Yesterday, the prevailing sentiment was that the City representation on the JPA board would form a bloc and oppose proposed lease agreement, killing the deal and allowing the City to provide a counteroffer.
  • That tactic was quickly trumped by last night’s letter from Lew Wolff to the JPA, which was reported during the JPA session. Wolff indicated that if the JPA did not approve the lease, Bud Selig would grant Wolff immediate permission to move the team out of Oakland.
  • In fear of Selig’s threatened reprisal, the JPA board met in closed session to discuss the lease. Eventually the lease was approved 6-2, Rebecca Kaplan (who helped construct the lease terms) and Aaron Goodwin (who dissented on the current lease).

Now for the deal terms. The redone lease includes concessions made by both sides. Note: the deal must be ratified by the Oakland City Council and Alameda County Board of Supervisors before August 1.

  1. The A’s will be in the Coliseum through at least the 2017 season, with opt-outs available to both the team and the JPA until the 2024 season.
  2. $5 million in back parking fees that were up for arbitration in the fall are now wiped away.
  3. The A’s will pay $1.25-1.75 million in annual rent. They will be obligated to pay this through the end of the lease, unless they are able to work a deal to build another stadium in Oakland.
  4. The A’s will pay at least $10 million for a new scoreboard/ribbon board package. They will keep all revenue from the boards during A’s games. The JPA/Raiders will get revenue for football games. If the new system costs less than $10 million, the remainder will be paid to the JPA.
  5. The JPA will put together a $1 million/year maintenance fund, for use when things break. The JPA is not obligated to spend $1 million every year if maintenance spending is not required.
  6. A’s will have good faith discussions about building a future ballpark at or near the Coliseum, depending largely on what the Raiders do.
  7. The Coliseum area is the only site under consideration for a ballpark, with Howard Terminal dropped.

However you feel about the parking matter, this is a large number of concessions from the A’s. As Interim City Administrator Henry Gardner pointed out, this won’t stop the big subsidy that the City and County have to pay to keep the Raiders and A’s at the Coliseum. Then again, the counteroffer wasn’t providing any relief for that subsidy either.

The A’s have also asked for any developer interested in the Coliseum to put up $20 million towards a redevelopment project. You can call this “earnest money.” It may sound like a lot, but it’s an important form of skin in the game for the developer, something that Colony Capital isn’t providing right now. Wolff certainly isn’t afraid of dropping that kind of coin, since he bought some Fremont land in advance and paid for the CEQA study work in advance. $10 million is a good amount to keep pretenders from engaging in talks.

This type of deal was available in November, before the last time the A’s and the JPA hit a stalemate. Selig and Rob Manfred then stepped in and negotiated the to-be-superseded short-term deal. For whatever reason, the City of Oakland hasn’t recognized that until now, Selig has treated the City with kid gloves. That explains their shock and outrage to Selig’s power play. Sorry Oakland, this is how Selig normally operates. It’s part of the standard commissioner’s playbook. At some point the hardass version of Selig was going to show up and back his owner. To expect different wouldn’t just be unrealistic, it would be downright delusional.

Things are not going to get better for Oakland. The other shoe to drop will be the reactions of Mark Davis and the NFL. Since the Raiders and A’s are effectively competing for the Coliseum, both leagues are likely to play tug-of-war with the City in order to get them to commit to either entity. That should provide Oakland with some amount of usable leverage, but that’s negated by the City’s lack of non-land resources and their concerns about the feelings of the other team/league. What you’re seeing right now is Oakland in paralysis. The NFL and MLB are only happy to shake Oakland out of it. Both leagues are gearing up their preferred and contingency plans. If Davis decides this is it and gives up on Coliseum City, the complex is all Wolff’s to negotiate. If Davis truly wants Coliseum City and sees a way to make it work, Oakland will have a tough decision to make. Which team, league and developer should they partner with? It’s a decision that no politician wants to make, especially during an election year. Yet that’s Oakland destiny. Get busy living? Andy Dufresne had to decide that he had enough of Warden Norton’s hijinks in order to plan his escape. Oakland has two Warden Nortons, and it will have to screw one of them. Otherwise Oakland could find its teams, like Norton’s money, all gone.

148 thoughts on “Selig pulls out move threat card, Oakland folds like cheap tent, JPA approves lease

  1. Do you think Oakland CC will approve? Quan made some defiant noises this afternoon but you can’t stand by anything she says.

  2. Shawshank Redemption, one of my favorites.

    ML, which do you think Wolff would choose? A ballpark at Diridon, or a ballpark in Oakland with full development rights to Coliseum City?

  3. Oakland is better at the get busy dying part.

  4. If this is a large number of concessions from the A’s, is Oakland folding like a cheap tent? Is that how you intend to sell this to voters, the taxpaying, ticket-buying public?

    The animosity between the parties is thicker than thick. Has this blog brought them together? Or capitalized on the discord, driving them further apart?

    Bashing Oakland is encouraged. Lies, defamation, it don’t matter. Damn bitch deserves it. C’mon Bud, she’s only got one black eye. What about the other?

    You know what? I don’t give a crap how these politicians vote. When you ever get your newballpark, you can shove it up your ass. Until then, I’m gonna go to the ballgame and enjoy it. I got plenty other stuff to do after that.

    • @freddy – Do you have a point? This blog is not some city cheering section, like Baseball Oakland. I’m here to report and analyze. You keep talking about how you have better things to do, yet you come back time after time with passive-aggressive nonsense. If you consider criticism of the people who run Oakland the same as criticism of the city as a whole and its citizens, then you need some time to educate yourself about politics. I can’t help you with that. You want to stop getting embarrassed by your city leaders? Vote in better leaders.

      Example – “Folding like a cheap tent” has nothing to do with what’s on paper. It has everything to do with tactics. Council was ready to go hardline, then Selig butted in. It almost didn’t matter what was on the lease, since Oakland was going to give in. The fact that Wolff gave up some key items shows there was compromise. Don’t get that? Maybe you need to step back, take a deep breath, and think about things for a while. Maybe go to a ballgame like you claim to do.

  5. @freddy- given your frequent attacks on LW I find it ironic that you are now sensitive to ML ‘s blog. What have you or any of the other Oakland only crowd done to help bridge the gap of inept city leaders and someone who is willing to retain the team in the Bay Area and privately pay for a ballpark if it makes financial sense. Remember- pointing a ginger at someone else means you have 3 pointed back at yourself-

  6. The Oakland only crowd aren’t even real fans. They are whiny, entitled douches. You should want what’s best for the team and for baseball, not what is possibly a slightly more or less convenient trip for you to the ballpark.

  7. I especially like that thus lease focuses on one site only and HT is off the table. Doug Boxer can now take credit for the W’s leaving as well as the Raiders. His constant gaming if the situation led Oakland pols (with input from Larry Baer) to think they could continue to play the delay game forever instead of working on a real solution.

  8. “What have I done to help bridge the gap of inept city leaders and someone who is willing to retain the team in the Bay Area and privately pay for a ballpark?”

    Remained a fan, put butts in seats. Demanded a better fan experience. Kept my friend’s eyes on the game. What have you done? Dammit, I’m a customer, Jim.

    My beef with Wolfe? Simple: he put tarps on our seats. Told us to stay home.

    Then he turned it into the all-you-can-eat section. Disgusting.

    While that charade played out, I got into SF Pro-Am and mountain climbing. Oakland is the center of a nice universe, we got lots of options.

    When the tarps came off, my pals bought in again. Big time. I made them. People wanna piss in our face, on our civic pride, our team, our
    Oakland Athletics – screw them.

    I’m not newly sensitive. I’ve been bitching about the bias on this blog since whenever. It’s not constructive. Go ahead – gang-rape me. I ain’t afraid, I’m more ginger than you.

    Bitching about crap on the Internet now a new sport unto itself. You got a great ballpark here. Nice win against Toronto tonight. For those of us watching the game.

  9. Missed a comment or two while I was thinking, writing…

    “The Oakland only crowd aren’t even real fans. They are whiny, entitled douches.”

    That kinda commentary is applauded here. It’s your blog, man.

  10. Your posts aren’t even coherent freddy. And it’s a personal blog for christ’s sake. It is allowed to have any bias it wants. This is not the BBC or Associated Press or Reuters.

  11. No, it’s not my blog. Are you smoking crack? If you don’t want what is best for the franchise, then you’re not a fan. It’s literally that simple.

  12. watched ystl which had this issue as the #1 topic, one of the VERY few times the any a’s related topic is even in the A block of the show. i don’t remember everything said but anyways ratto and ostler were the two panelists.

    ostler thinks when it’s all said and done the a’s will move to sj with the court ruling going in favor of the a’s eventually getting the green light for sj.

    ratto is less optimistic, shocker there huh. he doesn’t think sj is going to happen at all. doesn’t think this will reach the supreme court and even if it did that the court seems to favor “pro/big business” in their rulings.

    it was the host kozimer who brought up the issue of other cities suing mlb as tampa did and they got a team eventually. but ratto responded by that saying that mlb has closed the “loop holes” essentially what he calls them for that not to happen again. ostler said he thinks those outside of mlb don’t know what mlb even still has the anti trust exemption anymore and that definitely something the mlb doesn’t want to go away or even being chipped away at and that’s what will eventually force the league to side with the a’s and let them move to sj. ratto says mlb has too good of lawyers for that to happen.

    ratto also said in terms of the next commish that if it’s essentially the choice of somebody like reinsdorf who maybe the most influential owner in all of mob that the status quo will continue. if it’s somebody like manfred who’s the COO of MLB then things could change. i don’t get this? wouldn’t somebody who reinsdorf chooses favor the a’s move to sj? isn’t reinsdorf one of the only mlb owners who’s sided publicly in a way for the a’s to move to sj?

  13. “No, it’s not my blog.”

    You dummy, you think I was talking to you?

  14. You quoted my post and yet you claim to not be addressing me…

  15. @freddy- remind us all again why your upset- the team you propose to love just signed to okay another 10 years in the same shithole which will allow the inept politicians you support a total of 30 years to figure out a solution to a new ballpark after giving the A’s a big fuck you back in 1995. And to continue to whine about tarps when the best team in baseball has an average of 12k empty seats….but hey why not have 32k empty seats instead. Giving away tickets is not a formula for success, nor is winning a formula for success in Oakland like many of you Oakland only claimed as the reason that attendance sucks.

  16. Without a new Coliseum stadium/ballpark deal coming anytime soon, Oakland officials finally had to decide on which team should they put all their effort to retain for an extended period of time at the current facility. The decision was made simple by the differing attitudes of Lew Wolff and Mark Davis. Lew Wolff was seeking a lease extension for up to ten years, while Mark Davis has publicly stated that the Raiders would not be playing on a dirt field beyond the 2014 NFL season. The difference here was that Mark Davis has a most viable temporary option for his Raiders forty plus miles down the road, while Lew Wolff had only one less than desirable temporary option for his A’s. With an assist from Selig, Oakland officials made their decision.

  17. Shawshank Man I’m one of the few people I know that actually saw that at the theater,the Grand Lake as a matter of fact, fantastic movie. I’m just glad the JPA signed the darn thing, it’s a bare bones agreement and ML is correct Wolff did give some concerns. Is it just me or does anyone else think the mayor would not have agreed, regardless of what Lew would have agreed to?, outside of him actually agreeing to build a new park? If Wolff ever decides to just go ahead and build at the current site, he is just going to have to take on lot of the responsibility himself, because the Oakland city council is proving how difficult they can be to work with.

  18. Sorry I obviously meant to use the word “Concessions”

  19. re: The Shawshank Redemption, the great Stephen King-Frank Darabont picture that no one saw in the theaters but everyone saw on cable

    … I have the DVD of that movie with the cellophane wrap still on it since the movie is on TV everyday anyway. How does 6’5″ Andy Dufresne fit so nicely into 6’1″ Warden Norton’s suit? (Bob Gunton, who played Norton, is a decorated Vietnam War vet. )

    …Amazing to hear Oakland-only folks still acting like Oakland is the put-upon victim in all this. MLB has been very charitable to keep a team in a substandard stadium and subsidize the franchise every year. Oakland is a cost center, not a profit center, for MLB. Of course, we’ve even heard Oakland pols say MLB should be begging to stay in Oakland, not the other way around. OK. I do hope the A’s get a new ballpark in Oakland if it can be done, but there are certainly many reasons for MLB to pull the plug.

  20. @ pjk I never considered the suit thing, are you sure difference in height (between the two actor’s),is that much?

  21. Lakeshore: Yes, it’s at least that much. Just watch the movie. Tim Robbins is the tallest Oscar winner ever (he didn’t win for that movie, though). Want to watch another great Tim Robbins movie nobody saw? “Jacob’s Ladder”

  22. If this agreement, which of course still needs to be passed by the city of Oakland(no easy task), and I believe the Alameda county board of supervisors helps the A’s stay in the San Francisco Bay Area and build a new ballpark in Oakland or San Jose I’m cool with it, hell I don’t care if Wolff builds it on top of the Golden Gate Bridge, let’s just get it done.

  23. There’s a certain symmetrical irony that the way Wolff forced the JPA’s hand to stay was by threatening to move — his one-note song that he’s been singing ever since he’s become the managing partner of the current owners.

    Unfortunately, he and Fischer have been terrible owners in terms of fan relations (stark contrast to the Haas’ family). And, in irony again, the thing he’s been worst at is in developing a stadium… as a developer himself.

    I’ve always felt that had the Haas family continued to own the team, we would have long since been enjoying a brand new stadium somewhere close to where they are now. And, that, coming from a family that made their money off of blue jeans.

  24. @ML

    Yeah ml is right. City of Oakland will have to decide between A’s and Raiders. ..I still on the Raider side and allow the A’s to move to San Jose or build a ballpark away from the Coliseum. ..I’m sure mayor Quan is not liking this one bit

  25. I believe that Selig’s backing of Wolff was a clear message to both Oakland’s elected officials and to the Giants’ ownership that MLB was committed to the A’s staying within the Bay Area, and not necessarily specifically to Oakland. For the first time, MLB is beginning to show its hand in order to finally help resolve the problems with the A’s in getting a new Bay Area ballpark.

  26. Harry, can you pass me whatever you are smoking? I love how it make your whole world view change every three hours.

  27. @Jeffery
    Sorry I’m too fancy for u…
    This is a very optimistic year in Oakland sports A’s are the top team in baseball Raiders have a overhaul of new players maybe a winning baseball/football season not seen since 2002 is what Oakland civic and business pride need to resolve this stadium mess

  28. I hope you are right llpec. If San Jose does pan-out in the near future, buying out this lease will be chump-change compared to the revenue of even one season of sellouts in a new stadium somewhere else. I just have to hold on to that hope when I think of the possibility of 10 more years being stuck in a city that does not deserve the team.

  29. @A’s fan: Being a developer doesn’t mean you can just get things done unilaterally and on a whim. The downtown site was killed by Jerry Brown. Fremonet was killed by NIMBYs. CC is currently being killed slowly by a funding gap AND the city wanting to split control of it between the A’s and Raiders. Etc, etc. The two things most responsible for the A’s being stuck in the Coliseum are the city’s incompetence and MLB’s inaction with the BRC for 5 years.

  30. @harry: A combination A’s/Raiders winning season is going to do ‘near a as makes a no a difference’ nothing to increase corporate support funding of an Oakland stadium or stadiums.

  31. Have you read the agreement? The A’s get all stadium revenue (tickets, concessions, parking). The parking and concessions alone generate a PROFIT OF OVER $10 MILLION per year. The city/county only get $1,750,000 in rent but need to put $1 million into a maintenance account meaning their only revenue is $750,000 which will go down over time as the maintenance fund has to go up each yearr and the rent goes down over time. The cost to run the Coliseum for the A’s excluding debt service and maintenance far excedds $750,000 producing an annual loss 0f $3-5 million. This deal is very one sided . The A’s make at least $10 million per year and the city/county lose at least $3 million per year. It only proves that Mike Crowley , Lou Wolfe and Fisher are pigs which is not a good way to build relationship with the city/county and fans. This deal is similar to what has existed for the last 15 years.What makes it worse , despite the one sided deal in their favor, the A’s continue to bad mouth the Coliseum and the City while taking all the revenue. Its time to let them leave.

  32. The A’s and Raiders can both be accommodated at Coliseum City. The problems are that the Raiders do not have the capital to invest and would prefer to move to LA hence the manuvering around the site . The A’s do not want to build there . Despite the massive subsides to both teams they will go to greener pastures. Its time to cut the subsides and let them float.

  33. Ratto is a complete idiot and a total giants homer. He likely gets his legal knowledge from viewing Judge Judy episodes. “Closing loopholes”? – MLB doesn’t have the authority to “close loopholes” – it’s up for the courts to decide about the legality of any so-called “loopholes” – not Ratto or MLB. “MLB has too good of lawyers for that to happen”? – another completely foolish claim by Ratto, with no basis of fact – only Ratto’s opinion (San Jose – the 10th largest city in the the U.S., and the Cotchett Law firm aren’t bush league)Reinsdorf is in favor of the A’s move – more evidence that Ratto is a complete idiot.

    Ostler is right – every instance where MLB loses an ATE battle in court weakens its ATE further. Also, Ratto and his boss – Larry Baer – have recently been spouting off that the bay area is one MLB team market only. Baer claimed that that there are cities with larger fanbases than the bay area and yet host only one MLB team (specifically the Texas Rangers and the Phillies)That is a complete false claim by Baer – the bay area’s fan base is 8.5 mil.; the Dallas Metropolitan region’s is 6.5 mil.; Philadelphia’s fan base is 6 mil. Ratto also has been spewing similar b.s. that the bay area is a one MLB team market only. It’s evident that the giants owners goal is now to marginalize the A’s and squeeze the A’s out of town. The giant’s don’t want the A’s in Oakland any more than they do San Jose. Temporarily moving to phone booth park would help the giants goal of marginalizing the A’s and squeezing them out of state – the giants are truly a scumbag organization.

  34. One thing I agree with Ratto on, MLB has never really cared about the stadium issue. He only stepped in now, because he wanted the A’s to have a place to play for a set period of time. He was hoping the A’s and Giants could work out a settlement. You won’t hear from Selig again unless the city votes down the lease. Most lawyers that follow this, do agree with Ratto. SJ will be lucky to not have it thrown out for lack of standing. It was always up to Lew to make the other owners care. That is Ratto’s main point. History tells you that Selig wanted status quo. It will be up to Lew to initiate the coliseum location.

  35. Wolff cannot unilaterally “initiate the Coliseum location”. That’s simply not how it works.

  36. Duffer: Why does this make the Giants a scumbag organization? I’m sure all teams would like to dominate one region by themselves. I think this is a two team market and I’m glad we have two teams but I don’t blame the Giants for looking after their own interests.

    I mean, I’ll bet LA and NY could become three team markets or that Dallas could become a two team market but I would understand why the existing clubs in those markets wouldn’t want to share. MLB can make them share if they consider it important enough to move a team in there, such as in the case of Washington, when they rejected Baltimore’s claims that DC was part of their territory.

    22 years ago, when the Giants were preparing to pack for Tampa, the A’s were happy. They were quite ready to see the Giants leave the Bay Area all to them. Of course by now the A’s likely would’ve also moved from Oakland, quite possibly to SF itself.

  37. Quan continues to play with fire to try and score political points- excerpts below based upon her press release last night-
    Professor of Economics at Smith College in Massachusetts Andrew Zimbalist, who is watching the stadium deal closely, told KCBS that could prove be a mistake.
    “Oakland, after all, is not the best baseball market in the United States so it’s something that I think Mayor Quan has to think about seriously before she pushes too hard,” he said.
    Despite the A’s having Major League Baseball’s best record at 52-33, Zimbalist said the city does not have a great of leverage and has already lost the Golden State Warriors basketball team.
    “It’s a small city with just a few large corporations. Today professional sports franchises need a large corporate base to do signage, sponsorships and buy luxury box seats and so on—Oakland doesn’t have very much of that,” Zimbalist said.

  38. @baynative- you overlook the fact that the A’s supported the gints staying by giving them SCCo to build a ballpark. At no point did the A’s try to force the gints out of the Bay Area which is exactly what the gints are trying to do to the A’s- nit to mention that Baer has been working behind the scenes and providing information to Oakland that supported their delay game strategy

  39. That’s true, Haas did that. But those sort of people are anomalies in modern American capitalism.

  40. Wrong Jordan – there are many legal experts who disagree with you. Even the Wall Street Journal (much more reputable and knowledgeable than Ratto)did a story that mentioned that it would be surprising if MLB won the case. It’s also evident that Ratto has very little legal expertise – judging by his comments.

    The Giants owners, many giants fans, and A’s fans who are wishing that San Jose loses the SJ vs MLB case so the A’s stay in Oakland – have evidently been listening to too much Ratto and Wendy Thurm. You all seem to have a tendency to judge the case before it has started and believe that “San Jose isn’t going to happen” Also, unlike you – I don’t pretend to have inside knowledge about how the courts will determine the outcome of the San Jose vs MLB case.

  41. Wrong, Baynativeguy, the A’s(quite opposite of what the giants are doing) gave their approval for the Giants plan of moving to San Jose because the A’s didn’t care to see the giants leave out of state. Furthermore, the LA Dodgers or Angels or NY Yankees/Mets don’t form bogus propaganda groups (Stand for San Jose) for example – in an attempt to drive the other team out of the shared fanbase, or sue other local cities (the giants organization is suing San Jose) The giants organization’s lowly methods of blocking the A’s are unprecedented in pro sports – the Giants are truly a scumbag organization.

  42. Duffer: The Yankees/Mets and Dodgers/Angels don’t have to form propaganda groups because no one is threatening to move into what they consider their market. Let’s see how they react if someone decides LA or NY is ripe for three teams. Maybe they’ll love it and embrace the LA Royals or NY Twins with open arms, or maybe the knives will come out.

    Again, I didn’t say I liked it. I think the A’s would be better down there but I can’t say I’m surprised. That’s capitalism for ya.

    Anyhow, have a nice 4th of July, time to enjoy some family and bbq.

  43. why do you guys read that fatboy Ratto? He works for KNBR and Comcast and in case you did not know Frisco own both. The guy needs to keep his job because SF Chron will be gone soon, very soon. Just remember that the same group of critters opined that SC could never build a new statium for the 49ers. The lawsuit will keep going on while the A’s stay where they are. If MLB dare the Sup Ct to take up the case, they will. Just relax and ignore fatboy and other Frisco apologists.

  44. @Baynativeguy:”The Yankees/Mets and Dodgers/Angels don’t have to form propaganda groups because no one is threatening to move into what they consider their market” What? in case you haven’t observed – the A’s have been here for 46 years – they are not moving into anyone’s market. Also, Oakland is closer in proximity to San Jose than SF is – the A’s have more of a claim to San Jose than the Giants do.

    Baer’s assertion that the Giants average 10,000 fans from San Jose per game is completely false – there is no way 10,000 fans commute 50 miles one way on a regular basis for a Giants game. At most, the giants likely achieve maybe 2-3K San Jose fans per game. The A’s won’t be intruding into the giants fanbase by moving to San Jose – 2-3K fans per game isn’t a big deal. Many of those 2-3 thousand fans will continue attending giants games anyway.

  45. @baynativeguy —
    The Washington Nationals actually pay a very dear price for moving into Baltimore territory. The Orioles receive most of their TV money. So it isn’t just that MLB willed it.

    There might be some price where the Giants would be willing to sell Santa Clara county, but Wolff won’t pay it.

  46. re: ’ve always felt that had the Haas family continued to own the team, we would have long since been enjoying a brand new stadium

    …More pining for the Haas family again. Didn’t the Haas family cash out when the losses started becoming too great? And check out this quote from Bud Selig in 2009: “Lew Wolff and the Oakland ownership group and management have worked very hard to obtain a facility that will allow them to compete into the 21st century,” Selig said. “To date, they, like the two ownership groups in Oakland before them, have been unsuccessful in those efforts.” That means both Schott AND Haas failed to get a new stadium built, no? Looks like Haas also tried and failed and didn’t stick with it.

  47. duffer: Didn’t Ratto used to write that Wolff didn’t have the money to build a stadium in San Jose? He had no supporting evidence whatsoever. Just a “hunch.” He’s no different than Tim “The 49ers will never build a stadium in Santa Clara” Kawakami.

  48. Ratto was also on Sports Net Central last night talking to Mindy Bach about this. He said Howard Terminal isn’t dead yet, but we won’t know much about it until all the environmental studies are concluded in a year or so. Think about that…

    “Doug Boxer can now take credit for the W’s leaving as well as the Raiders.”

    @GoA’s – Well done. If the Raiders do leave I’ll be using this line often.

  49. @pjk: Ratto, the mouthpiece for the Giants organization, is a buffoon and has no credibility.

  50. @muppet: Wait, is an EIR even being performed for Howard Terminal? I thought nobody had ponied up the money to pay for it.

  51. Nothing is being done at Howard Terminal.

  52. That’s what I thought. So we can’t even really say that the EIR will be complete in ~1 year when it hasn’t even started and no party has shown a will to pay for it.

  53. No one wants to spend millions reconfirming what they already know: Howard Terminal aint happening

  54. If the OWB group are so confident that HT is the ideal location,with minimal infrastructure and clean up cost then they should pay for the damn EIR,it would be a minor investment on there part considering Wolff would make them all a lot more wealthy then they already are (if he built on that site), since the majority of members have considerable real a state holdings near the site.

  55. HT has always just been a pawn in Oakland’s delay strategy which has always been focused on retaining the Raiders. Recall Kaplan saying something to the effect that Oakland needed 8-10 years to get serious about keeping the A’s

  56. I thought we would never score today.

  57. Regarding HT, if the OWB group thinks it’s such a good idea with minimal clean up and infrastructure cost they should have no problem finding the EIR, since there are people in that group that will benefit greatly if Wolff was to build on that site, considering the real a state holdings nearby to the HT. site that is owned by some in the group.

  58. “Funding the EIR”

  59. @smg and pjk
    Wolff is running away from a goldmine I’m Howard terminal field…I hope he considers investing in ht…especially he should join champions of home…anyway mayor Quan won’t get pushed around…behave with Oakland Wolff! !!

  60. “”The Yankees/Mets and Dodgers/Angels don’t have to form propaganda groups because no one is threatening to move into what they consider their market. Let’s see how they react if someone decides LA or NY is ripe for three teams. Maybe they’ll love it and embrace the LA Royals or NY Twins with open arms, or maybe the knives will come out.””

    There’s a hidden but important point to this comment. The fear by other owners of what a San Jose win could mean (even if they believe, right now, it is unlikely for SJ to win). This is one of the reasons why the case does not have to be won by San Jose, it just needs to get far enough into the legal process for MLB to get nervous. I am not saying it is there yet and it certainly may never get there, however, it is doubtful this case is going to be firmly decided. The downside of losing this case could be really big or at least really scarey for MLB, while the downside of giving up the case’s defense by negotiating with SJ is at most marginal.
    San Jose is not dead but it did take a whack to its skull with this agreement……because the agreeement gives Oakland another chance (probably last) at helping to make a home for the A’s at the current Coli site (but without the monster, pie in the sky CC project).

    I’d bet a full year’s mortgage payment the Oakland Pols will completely blow this last chance (a fact LW must realize and secretly, somewhat, want). From there only SJ winning the argument/MLB fearing a SJ win will save the A’s in the Bay Area 9with a very outside but possible renewed Fremont possibility). Sad but true…..

  61. @harry: Why would Wolff and Fisher prefer ht over a coliseum site without the raiders? The coliseum site has far more land for potential development by whichever team controls it without as many regulatory hurdles.

    @TW: Wolff and Fisher will just keep the A’s at the coliseum if another venue doesn’t pan out. There is no chance that the team leaves the region under this ownership group.

  62. From today (Friday):

    Remember Quan can’t vote unless it’s a tie breaking situation. I still think it passes. But Kernighan appears to be a no. Brooks and Schaaf are possibly if not probable no votes. Gallo, Reid and Kaplan appear to be yes votes, but that still means both Kalb and Gibson-McElhaney must vote yes to pass the lease. Otherwise Quan is the deciding vote, who seems to be a definite no.

    Oof. This might be closer than I thought.

  63. if u are a fan of the A’s , you pray that they will vote it down next week. then BS and MLB will have to make a decision. Signing a new lease now will not solve anything. So pray hard really hard that the knuckleheads in Oakland all vote NO.

  64. @daniel

    I consider myself a fan of the A’s, and I certainly hope your hypothetical analysis plays out if they vote no, but as a fan that would like them to stay in Oakland if possible, I’m hoping for nothing but a yes vote.
    If they do vote yes, that certainly does not preclude a move to San Jose, as a matter of fact if MLB gave the A’s permission tonight, to move they would probably need 3-5 years before they could move into the new San Jose park, so definitely hoping (not praying), for a yes vote.

  65. It’s Oakland thinking it has leverage again.

  66. @Lakeshore/Neil:

    I think you are wrong. A YES vote will keep the A’s at that dump for years to come. LW could have helped the team and himself if he listened to Mayor Reed but NO he wanted to appease BS. Now he will be stuck there for years if they approve the lease. There will be no new baseball park in Oakland wherever it is

    Oakland is still promoting HT when they know it is not a viable option at all. The charade must end now and only a NO vote will end the charade.

  67. daniel: The A’s need a place to play anyway. If Oakland continues to push the Howard Terminal site that MLB has flat-out rejected and won’t work with Wolff on a Coliseum ballpark, then it’s bye bye A’s from Oakland. If the city decides to vote down the lease thinking the A’s “have no place to go,” we will probably be going to see the A’s at ATT Park for a while. There is little incentive for MLB to cave to Oakland.

  68. @pjk: sure but MLB will be forced to make a decision. Either MLB allows the As to move to SJ or they have to come up a permanent home for the team. BS and MLB can’t no longer drag this out if the vote fails.

    MLB can’t force LW and Fisher out because they are good members of the lodge unlike the McCourts.

    The charade must end now

  69. @daniel
    I respect your point of view, however I have a problem with your statement.

    “If u are a fan of the A’s, you pray they will vote it down”

    There are plenty of A’s fans (including myself), that are hoping for a yes vote, I maybe wrong, you maybe wrong, we both maybe wrong,but a person can hope or pray, for a yes or no vote, neither determines weather that person is a fan, of course unless you are the person that determines,who and who are not a fan. I would hope both of us can agree on that.

  70. @ daniel

    And as pjk pointed out. and as I alluded to the A’s are going to need somewhere to play for 3-5 years even if they got the go ahead for San Jose tonight, it might as well be were they are playing at the moment.

  71. O/T: Billy wants to win the WS this year. Get another bat or 2 , Billy.

  72. A big part of the council vote could stem from any polling on which team Oakland residents prefer to keep- Raiders or A’s. A yes vote and Raider fans will be pissed. A no vote and Oakland only A’s fans will be pissed- should be fun-

  73. Let’s play some hypothetical games here for a moment. Let’s say the city votes NO on the lease (I think they’ll cave and vote yes, but who knows). At that point MLB forces the Giants to share AT&T with the A’s until a permanent venue plan is solidified. At that point, the A’s are over in SF and the Raiders essentially have the Coliseum to themselves. At that point, the Raiders leverage goes way up and the city turns their attention to appeasing the Raiders. But a permanent home for the A’s still needs to be found and with the Raiders in the driver’s seat at the Coliseum, getting anything done looks even more impossible than it does today. In my mind, that would force a vote by the owners on San Jose, at vote that I see San Jose winning. The only other option would be the A’s leaving the area all together, which ownership doesn’t want and which other owners may not like if the A’s eyed they’re respective regions: Rangers and Astros being against a San Antonio team, Mariners being against a Portland team, etc.

    What do you think?

  74. If the Oakland City Council is dumb enough to vote no on the new lease, it will give MLB the justification to approve the A’s move to San Jose. The A’s then will most certainly be playing at AT&T Park for three or four seasons until Cisco Field is completed. As for the rationale for Oakland to make such a decision, I would then tend to think that they apparently would want to keep the Coliseum free from the A’s as the only hope for retaining the Raiders. Even if the Raiders decide to move to Santa Clara on at least a temporary basis, Oakland officials would likely use this extra time to lure the Raiders back to a new stadium at the Coliseum site.

  75. If they are dumb enough to vote no, and I think we all known they are, I would hope any reasonable A’s fan would be pulling for San Jose to be opened up, I sure am the alternative is unthinkable.

  76. You’d think Lakeshore, but the Oakland or nothing crowd never ceases to astound me.

  77. What is interesting is why MLB is pressuring Oakland to commit to the lease at this time – Oakland is not motivated to agree to the lease so soon. The A’s could wait a few more months also (since building a temporary stadium would take only three months) Also Selig said that the A’s could move any place outside of Oakland and did not mention phone booth park as a possible location for the A’s (We know where the A’s stand on the possibility of the A’s moving to a-hole park. Wolff didn’t even reply to the suggestion that the A’s could move there and instead suggested that the A’s will build a temporary ballpark if the lease can’t be hashed out) – interesting.

  78. There’s no chance the A’s play in a temp park over AT&T.

  79. @ duffer

    It is interesting that MLB would step in, when the A’s really would not have a real problem again, until the end of next season, perhaps they did simply because Wolff asked them to. ML suggested one of the main reasons Lew may have been motivated was because of the parking tax issues, that was scheduled to go before an arbitration hearing soon, Wolff must have known he did not look good on that one, so let’s just take care of it this way.

  80. That is what Wolff suggested (the Giants are obviously not Wolff’s favorite organization – why would he want to help them out in any way or pay them revenue?) It’s possible Wolff believes that the concept of the A’s playing at phone booth park would be contemptible – similarly to what many A’s fans believe.

  81. The negative pr from playing in a makeshift “stadium” would vastly outweigh the negative pr from temporarily playing at AT&T, on top of which the A’s playing directly on top of Giants “territory” would on some level diminish the territorial argument made by the Giants.

  82. Selig didn’t mention phone booth park with his threat – he said the A’s could move any place outside of Oakland – that’s definitely not endorsing the idea of the A’s moving to phone booth. Wolff has never even discussed the possibility that the A’s would move there, and instead has discussed building a temporary ballpark. We know where Wolff stands about the possibility of the A’s playing at a-hole park.

  83. @Lakeshore/Neil: Possibly – is $5 mil. that much of a sum in MLB terms? (that’s the typical salary of a fifth starter) Why would Selig be so involved over a $5 mil. issue? -it could be other motives. MLB could likely care less about a $5 mil. dispute between the A’s and Oakland.

  84. Food for thought: Thursday was the final day that the A’s & Giants home schedules conflicted.

  85. No, we don’t know where he stands. You’re assuming where he and Selig stand based on omission, not actual explicit statements saying they would never play at AT7T temporarily. I see no evidence to suggest MLB would willingly allow a team to play in a makeshift stadium essentially made of scaffolding when there is another perfectly serviceable existing ballpark in the immediate area to use on a temporary basis. The Yankees played in Shea from 1974-1975 while Yankee Stadium was remodeled. The Cubs talked about playing at The Cell while Wrigley was being remodeled before settling on doing the work in the offseason. The Angels played in Dodger Stadium from 1962-1965. There’s precedent for such a setup. What there isn’t precedent for in the modern era (as far as I’m aware) is for MLB to allow a team to play in a makeshift stadium.

  86. Judging what Selig has done in the past – months ago directing that the A’s would play at phone booth park if Oakland didn’t ok the lease. Now with his latest threat to Oakland (not even mentioning phone booth as a possible location for the A’s) – suggesting instead that the A’s could move to any location outside of Oakland – is a huge shift by Selig.

  87. It’s not even an explicit shift. If he had said the A’s can leave Oakland and play in (insert specific temporary location that isn’t AT&T here), that would be a major shift. AT&T is outside of Oakland and his most recent statement is more broad but still implicitly inclusive of AT&T as a possibility even if he didn’t explicitly say it this time.

  88. Also, how about his Samardzija trade? He went from being the best quarterback in Chicago to being the best in Oakland.

  89. @ duffer
    Yeah I agree, there’s a lot going on behind closed doors, we just don’t know yet.

  90. @ SMG
    The trade was great, A’s clearly are all in two year window in particular.

  91. I concur with Lakeshore/Neil – there may be other motives, this could be interesting. Before – Selig dictated that the A’s would play at the phone booth (with no uncertain terms). Now, suggesting that the A’s could play any place outside of Oakland (without mentioning phonebooth) appears to be a big shift – Selig is typically very specific with his terminology.

  92. Also $5 mil. isn’t much in the MLB world (it likely is a large sum for Oakland city officials though, However the lease doesn’t address the $5 mil.) Oakland appears to be getting slightly hosed by the lease, and MLB appears to be twisting Oakland’s arm.

  93. “At that point, the A’s are over in SF and the Raiders essentially have the Coliseum to themselves. At that point, the Raiders leverage goes way up and the city turns their attention to appeasing the Raiders.”

    @SMG, Regardless of whether the A’s remain temporarily at the Coliseum or at AT&T Park, I do see more and more likely a path for the A’s to move to San Jose in about five years or so. I also anticipate that the Raiders will be moving to Santa Clara, at least on a temporary basis, after this upcoming 2014 NFL season. These two combined scenarios will lead to a totally vacant Coliseum in the not too distant future. At that point, the Raiders will truly have the leverage with Oakland to get a doable new stadium deal done on the Coliseum site.

  94. How will the Raiders get leverage with Oakland if there is a $500 million funding gap that no one can fill? You can’t draw blood from a rock.

  95. The A’s cannot play in a temp ballpark as it would require mass amounts of revenue sharing to survive.

    Right now according to Bloomberg the A’s had a league low 175M in revenue playing at the Coliseum. A temp ballpark would hammer revenues down to under 100M.

    MLB would have pay an additional 75M or so in revenue sharing just to keep the A’s afloat in a temp ballpark….not happening.

    Selig was referring to ATT Park when he said “outside of Oakland”. Selig never thinks 2 steps ahead so take his statements on face value alone.

    Wolff should move to ATT Park as he could increase payroll by at least 40M with new revenue streams he lacks now.

    By sitting on the Giants heads it would allow the A’s to field more competitive teams and their attendance would increase from 23k-24k to 30k or so and be able to sell premium seating.

    Even revenue sharing with the Giants (20% or so on all sales) and paying them rent would be covered by MLB revenue sharing dollars so it would be a wash.

    The Giants revenues would soar and they would have to put more into the pot while the A’s could keep receiving the same amount and their revenue would go up.

    It is not fair to force the A’s off MLB revenue sharing when they are the tenant and homeless paying the Giants to play there.

    MLB would be then making a profit of this market for the first time ever…..the irony.

    But this is Bud Selig and MLB who’s thinking in archaic.

    • @Sid – The A’s only pull in $30-35 million from the Coliseum. They could easily make that with a temp stadium of only 15-20k seats.

  96. re: Right now according to Bloomberg the A’s had a league low 175M in revenue playing at the Coliseum

    …Yet I’m still seeing columns written and statements made to the effect that Oakland needs to stand up to the mean, greedy A’s and vote against the lease. The team is last in league revenues, 24th in attendance (even with the best record in in the league). What is the incentive for MLB to stay there other than flat out being charitable to Oakland despite the city’s decades-long dismissal of the A’s?

  97. Anyone know the proposed date to place lease on Oakland CC meeting? I know lease approval deadline is 8/1 so I figure Oakland will wait until last minute to continue a PR war-

  98. @Sid, perhaps you are correct. However, the facts are that Wolff has never discussed playing at phone company park, and instead has discussed building a temporary stadium. Several months ago, Selig gave the order that the A’s would play at phone booth if Oakland would not approve the lease. Now, Selig ok’ing that the A’s could move any place outside of Oakland is a big shift by Selig (Selig also typically chooses his words carefully) Furthermore – many A’s fans would despise the idea of playing at phone booth park – why would Wolff be any different? It’s possible Wolff wouldn’t play there out of spite because of the giants organization – could one blame him?

  99. “How will the Raiders get leverage with Oakland if there is a $500 million funding gap that no one can fill? You can’t draw blood from a rock.”

    @pjk, I’m of the belief that if there is a will, there will be a way. You be surprised that with the prospect of a vacant Coliseum, along with the prospect of losing all three of its major level sports teams, Oakland will find a way to bring the Raiders back to their city. Also, unlike the A’s and Warriors, the Raiders have not lost their will to return to Oakland.

  100. The only place Oakland can pull $500 million from at this point is a bond measure. And good luck justifying that in a city with $2 billion in unfunded pensions, a short-staffed police department, poor schools, etc.

  101. @pjk and smg

    u ain’t nothing but a hater.. A’s should be quakking in their boots…if City of Oakland votes against lease..and the rumbling is…that they might call a no vote…so Wolff better reconsider working with Coliseum City or Howard terminal field

  102. Duffer, Selig did no such thing. “We will immediately be allowed to seek a temporary or permanent location outside the city of Oakland.” That says nothing about “anywhere” they want. And in fact this has always been the case, the hold up has been specifically where they chose to move. What this really is is the difference between Selig/MLB siding with keeping the team in Oakland, to siding with the idea of moving the team to an as of yet unknown location. Right now, there’s a non-zero chance that Wolff will make Oakland work out, but it’s slim and that his priority is elsewhere (SJ). And right now, MLB’s official stance has been the reverse, a non-zero chance that they leave Oakland, but it’s slim and that their priority is for them to stay. If Oakland votes “no,” MLB’s stance will align with Wolff’s without specifically pushing for SJ (which as long as the other issues, T-Rights, lawsuit, etc) is off the table.

  103. harry: Do you actually expect anyone to respond to you seriously? You’re the most well-identified troll on this blog and you make no effort to hide it so that people might actually engage you seriously.

  104. @dmoas: Selig said the A’s could move to a temporary or permanent site outside of Oakland, I agree Selig did not say “anywhere” – it could be interpreted as that though. Either way – it is a big reversal from Selig – because it doesn’t suggest phone company park as a site. Previously, Selig was ordering that the A’s would play there if the lease talks fell through. From what ML says – the A’s playing at a temporary site may be a better move also.

  105. @smg
    Dude ur comments have zero..I repeat zero fact or anything of substance. …I am correct city of Oakland is unhappy with the lease. Lewis owes 5mil which can be used as a good gesture to the tax payers on some badly needed city services. Because Lewis has disrespect Oakland with his San Jose talks why should he be awarded the Coliseum? ?? Quan is right. RAIDERS HAVE 1ST priority at the Coliseum. ..smg..u could learn to be educated and we’ll informed

  106. You preaching about substance? That’s rich. You can barely write in comprehensible English and ramble on about your opinions while representing them as bulletproof fact. Maybe the City of Oakland should act in a manner deserving of respect if it wants to be treated with it.

  107. Then again, I’m replying to a troll, so I shouldn’t expect much.

  108. @ dmoas

    Your correct the situation has not changed at all, Selig did not say anything he has not already said,now I make this statement knowing full well MLB may be thinking a step or two ahead, but he gave the A’s permission to look at “other communities”, as it were when Fremont fell through. We know other communities could not of been San Jose (unfortunately),it must have been outside the A’s designated territory, because they were already outside of Oakland and Fremont had just fallen through, so nothing new Lew always had permission to move outside of the Bay Area I’m sure most of baseball wishes he would.

  109. I really don’t think most of baseball wishes he would move the team out of the area. Where are they going to go where they won’t be stepping on some other team’s toes? Right now it’s only a problem for the A’s and Giants. The A’s leaving the Bay makes it a potential problem for every team.

  110. We are all just reading the tea leaves, but my guess is the pressure is on the Giants, MLB may be saying if Oakland can’t get it’s sh*t together the A’s are staying with you, if you don’t like it I will grant them San Jose, and if Oakland can’t get it’s sh*t together after the A’s stay with you, we may have to give them San Jose anyway, look at it this way you will make plenty of money on rent while Oakland gets it’s sh*t together and if they don’t, you make plenty of money while San Jose does.

  111. @ SMG

    you are probably correct, not most.

  112. There is a side of me that believes that bs/MLB hopes for a No vote by the Oakland pols. He kills 2 birds with one stone- A’s can move anywhere in their 2 team shared market which would nullify the SJ lawsuit before the 9th District hears it- it saves MLB from saying they caved to SJ/lawsuit and allows the A’s/MLB to capitalize on Silicon Valley riches-

  113. @harry- if Quan has said Raiders are first she and they better step up- time is just about out for the raiders- and I for one think that Marc Davis is thrilled- remember- he also had to show the nfl that he had tried in Oakland before any approval for a move could come- I think he has shown that-

  114. @ML- “The A’s only pull in $30-35 million from the Coliseum. They could easily make that with a temp stadium of only 15-20k seats.”

    You cannot be serious with this statement….Coliseum may suck but here are some #s for you to write your next blog post on.

    According to Bloomberg, which we can take with a grain of salt, these are the A’s revenue #s from the Coli:

    33M- Gate receipts
    9M- Concessions
    12M- Sponsorship
    5M- Parking

    You add these #s up (33+9+12+5)= 59M from the Coliseum itself.

    The A’s rent is around 1.5M a year and these #s do not include money from Raiders concessions and advertising, all which were concessions when Schott sued the JPA and won when the Raiders returned.

    These #s are not available but I will leave them out for arguments sake.

    A temp ballpark would cost a significant capital investment and depending on where could range from 30M-50M upfront at least….perhaps more.

    With only 15k-20k in fans in some temp ballpark wherever (SJ, Oak, SF, or Sac even) the A’s revenues would drop well below 100M on top of the capital investment to build the temp ballpark.

    Right now the A’s struggle with attendance during the week but do good #s during the weekends even with higher prices. Therefore a majority of the A’s revenue is coming from these weekend home games.

    A temp ballpark would kill the A’s attendance spike during the weekends and kill a big part of their revenue in all areas including sponsorship.

    All four categories I stated above where they get revenue would plummet big time. 59M would drop to 10M-15M easily.

    It would cripple the franchise without revenue sharing to make up the difference.

    Please prove to me why you think a temp ballpark with 15k-20k of fans with a significant capital investment works over the Coliseum???

    I would love to see your logic because I cannot figure it out for the life of me. Plus, how is a temp ballpark better than sharing ATT Park?

  115. @duffer- Do not think Bud Selig is a smart guy because he is not. He is a moron who lucked out because sports TV media rights blew up and by default increased team values.

    He is a dumbass who believes he is a “god amongst men”….

  116. @ML- Plus prove to me why fans would go to a temp ballpark over the Coliseum and how easily revenue would be the same??

    If fans do not make A’s games now in general at the Coliseum, explain to me why they would show up a dump of a temp stadium that would resemble a Triple A field?

  117. @Sid – Can you actually do some math when you spout off like this?

    First of all, the A’s attendance has been hovering around 20,000/game for the last decade. A much smaller venue will introduce the kind of scarcity that will bring much more consistent attendance game-to-game attendance and allow for much higher ticket prices.

    I was referring to gate figures, which for the A’s are pathetic thanks to frequent discounting and lower base ticket prices. If the A’s were to charge an average $25/ticket for a sold out (20,000 seats) 81 games, that’s $40 million in gate, already better than what they’re getting. That doesn’t include concessions/advertising/other revenue. The A’s can introduce plenty of value-added services, use better technology, and offer much greater intimacy (sightlines, distance) at a temporary ballpark than they can at the Coliseum. Plus the novelty of playing at the venue will help sustain attendance. This is much different from the Cashman Field stint, which had no push to make an experience approaching MLB quality. Times are different now.

    A temp venue doesn’t have to be rickety high school grandstands. It can be basically the same quality as a modern AAA venue, especially because it can be built in 9-12 months. Many of the materials can be used in a new MLB stadium. There are any number of ways to make this work.

    Franklly, I’m surprised that you went off like this without at least doing some minimal math. It’s a reminder that it’s important not to simply parrot numbers you’ve heard elsewhere, try to dig a little further.

  118. I was at tonight’s game: What a great atmosphere – three guys walking around with the big Rickey Henderson, Dennis Eckersley and Rollie Fingers heads; another three guys in Darth Vader and similar costumes with an A’s motif; loud crowd. A’s win. The only thing wrong was all the empty seats. This is the best team in baseball with economical prices. The place should be filled every night – not just when the Giants, Red Sox or Yankees are town or if there’s a giveaway or fireworks.

  119. Duffer, Selig has actually said nothing. All we have to go on is Wolff’s game of telephone via email. We honestly can’t even say anything of what he’s thinking or suggesting. And doing so based on what little we got from Wolff’s email and MLB’s vague confirmation is patently absurd. The only thing we can take away from this is is that MLB is tiring of the political gamesmanship and supports the lease, as is, that’s on the table.

    • @dmoas – The confirmation came directly from MLB COO Rob Manfred after the City called him. I’d say that’s anything but vague.

  120. I’m surprised Selig pulled the “leave Oakland” card out so quickly. I said he might pull it out in a previous thread (the thread that announced Oakland did not showing up for previous vote) but I didn’t think it would happen so quick. As far as the words he used, BS was best to leave the threat in generic terms (from a negotiating standpoint) and let the speculation take care of conjuring up the frightening prospect of ‘it could mean San Jose!’.

    As far as Oakland Pols, in that same previous thread I said they had done well in their rhetoric and skipping the meeting stunt to strengthen their negotiating position (IMHO BS never intended to have the A’s play anywhere but the Coli for the next several years — and Oakland could gain from that position). Talk about a short lived win for the Pols. Unless they got something really good from skipping the vote (a nice sweetener added at the last second??), they ultimately proved to be negotiating chumps and incompetents. The city just told MLB “if you want something and we won’t give it to you, just threaten to leave then we will give it to you ASAFP” (Oakland probably just told the Raiders something similar too). For god’s sake! To go through all those stunts with all that bravado and then fold like a house of cards after one threat? At least Oakland could have acted like they had to consider/study it further, take a lesser but still hard-ish line that a delay in the vote for two weeks was absolutely needed. Put on what the Pols are good at, a dog and pony show for a week that let’s everyone know BS’s threat would not make them bend over.

    Given how badly Oakland Pols played this, if I’m LW I’d think “these bozos can’t be expected to successfully negotiate and execute a plan for a little league baseball field”. Oakland’s leadership must change significantly for the better to have any chance at keeping the A’s at the Coli longer than a few years. No way such incompetence can get something done on the scale of a new Coli (and just forget about a CC project, period!).

  121. @dmoas: MLB would have denied Wolff’s story if it were not true. Now you are believing that no communication between Wolff and Selig or Oakland city officials occurred – that it was made up by Wolff? – give me a break. That story has much more validity than all the other b.s. flying around.

    For example, there is all this assumption that the A’s would move to phone booth park if Oakland doesn’t ok the lease. Selig’s comments said the A’s could move to a temporary or permanent site outside of Oakland – that includes San Jose, unless we are told otherwise – that must be true.

    Also not mentioning phone booth park and instead suggested that the A’s move outside of Oakland means Selig will not force the A’s to move to phone company park if Quan and co. refuse the lease – and instead allow the A’s to choose other sites. I am going by statements – not assumptions.

  122. Woh there. Duffer, I never said MLB didn’t speak to Wolff. Far from it. All I’m saying is that any specific action is entirely vague *to us*. All we know about the conversation itself is that it happened and that MLB is backing him up. Any attempt to analyze what MLB supports in terms of leaving Oakland is entirely speculation. And we know for sure is that he *can* leave Oakland, something that he’s always been allowed to do depending on where he wanted to go. There are vague hints that he could do so immediately, however even that is vague in the sense of when & where. Next home series? Next year? At the end of the lease? And “out of Oakland” means little beyond not being in the Coliseum. No idea if that means SF, a temp park, Sac, SJ, somewhere else? Literally all we’ve been given is a set of ambiguous terms that may or may not be a bluff. While there’s some safe assumptions, namely MLB is tiring of the situation and supporting Wolff and the lease terms, beyond that we know something is going on behind the scenes of MLB, but no real hints at what that may be. Literally you’re doing is making assumptions. Why was the phone booth et al mentioned? Easy. It was WOLFF writing an emailed threat to the Oakland Pols. It wasn’t a press release, it wasn’t a Q&A it was an email informing them that the circumstances would change if it wasn’t approved while keeping their cards close to the vest. It’s absolutely assumption to read into all that you’re trying to read into it.

    ML, yes, Manfred confirmed the *vague* threat of leaving Wolff made. But no more. What we know is that the A’s threaten to move (with MLB’s blessing) if the lease terms aren’t approved. But everything beyond that, the when, where, what, why, how, etc., the true meat of the details is entirely vague. I suspect it’s intentionally vague, because why play cards like that if you don’t have to. It’s a game of poker. MLB could have a 2/7 and are trying to bluff there way. Or they could be sitting on pocket Aces and willing to go all in. But they’re not going to tell us what they have unless Oakland calls their hand.

  123. What’s going on here is this lease throws a wrench into plans to keep on stalling, stalling, stalling and to drive the A’s over to the unacceptable Howard Terminal site. So there is going to be push back from Oakland. No way the Raiders are going to like this lease, even if there is flexibility in it should an absolute miracle happen and somebody comes up with the $500 million still needed for a Raiders stadium. Oakland can fight this lease and roll the dice that the A’s have nowhere to go but I think we all know MLB can find a place for the team if need be.

  124. Selig said anywhere, did that anywhere included San Jose?, I would think he would have actually said San Jose if it included San Jose, after all outside of AT&T, San Jose is the real threat (short term), to the A’s being in Oakland, perhaps he meant San Jose as well, I just think he would have specified if so, but if so that would be good news.

  125. @ pjk

    I agree I don’t think the Raiders like the lease even with flexibility, but if the Raiders really want to build and have the ability to do so, they can still get it done

  126. @ pjk
    It would require they play a little longer with 49ers then they would have hoped, but they can get it done. Davis has publicly mentioned Berkeley, but the NIMBY groups got assurance against such things, when they let the remodeling go through without a fight, perhaps the Raiders can get around that with the word “temporary”, who knows?

  127. @
    Davis can and probably will complain about the A’s lease, but unless Wolff makes a commitment to build at the coliseum site and as a condition of that commitment demands all redevelopment rights, Davis can still do what he says he wants to, unless he either does not want to, or does not have the ability to pull together the required assets to do so.

  128. Sorry: last comment was conclusion to @pjk

  129. Lakeshore/Neil, Selig (for a change), was smart in not spelling out San Jose. Why? If you are playing Poker, you do not allow Quan, Davis, or anyone else to see all of your cards (San Jose is the Ultimate Trump Card).
    I suspect we will not get the answer to the Question of who will end up @ the Coliseum starting in 2016, until after the NFL Season and the Fall Elections are over. I think it is fair to say, that the Raiders will not draw flies to the Coliseum as a “Lame-Duck” Franchise, and Quan needs every vote she possibly can get to be Re-Elected, and thousands of angry Raider Fans either NOT voting or worse, voting for someone else, will not help.
    I really do not see the Raiders @ Santa Clara. Why? Davis who is more of a Raiders Cheerleader than anything else, would not be happy renting from the 49ers, and being stuck there for God knows how long? I suspect it is LA or Oakland for the Raiders, and the answer will be right around (or after) December 21st, the Final Raiders Home Game of the Regular Season. Meaning Raiders or (the Oakland only) A’s fans will be getting coal in their stocking for Christmas (I bet on the Raiders).

  130. @dmoas-hopefully Oakland pols feel like you do that MLB is bluffing and vote No on the lease- I believe we would have a speedy resolution to SJ at that point including building a temporary ballpark which would be complete at the time the lease expires in Oakland in 2015-

  131. @ Dave Brown

    Sure sounds like your on the right track.

  132. @dmoas: I don’t what’s confusing about “the A’s can move to a temporary or permanent location outside of Oakland” – that statement seems easy to comprehend. I would deduct that MLB would approve the A’s building a temporary stadium somewhere locally – also that San Jose may also be included in the mix, since San Jose is outside of Oakland and MLB didn’t specify that it was off limits.

  133. @ ML – OT Thanks so much for the tweet about Ray Guy in Canton, finally is correct.

  134. Is anyone talking about the possibility of Howard Terminal being a potential site for the Raiders? Yes, I know Mark Davis has already stated his preference for a new football stadium at the current Coliseum site, but it annoys me that so many people who want the A’s to remain in Oakland seemingly want to give the Raiders just about everything they want. If Howard Terminal is supposed to be so great a site for a sports stadium (not that I agree or disagree with that premise), then why NOT a football stadium instead of a baseball venue?

  135. @ Matt
    Wonderful observation, with the traffic concerns it may be better suited for football. If Mark Davis is as serious as he claims to be, he should consider it, that’s if it can be built on at all.

    Raiders’ owner Mark Davis says the team has $400M to put towards a new stadium.

    “You have to tear the Coliseum down”

    So that means Mt Davis wouldn’t be part of any new stadium built for the raiders?

  137. $400 mill gets him 40% of the way there. In other states, the city, state or county put up the other $600 million. But this is California, where the public contribution toward stadium construction is fixed at $0.00.

  138. I’m pretty sure that $00 million is actually $200 million from the team and an assumed $200 million in matching funds from the NFL.

  139. The first number is supposed to say $400 million. One of those cases where I wish I could edit my posts.

  140. Just heard from Desley Brooks, she’s a definite no.

    The most likely time for a vote would be next Tuesday the 15th. I don’t think city rules allow for a binding vote such as this to be taken in private. But don’t hold me to that since a this is a vote on joint authority issue and the rules might be different.

    If the vote doesn’t take place until the 15th A LOT can and will happen (be said) between now and then. You already knew that. In the end, this still probably comes down to Kalb and Gibson-Mcelhaney.

  141. letsgoa’s, Mount Davis is part of the Coliseum despite how A’s fans may feel about it.

  142. SMG you are correct. Davis’ 400 million dollars is actually 200 million from the NFL and 200 million from Davis.

  143. $200 million from the NFL if the league decides a second NFL facility in the Bay Area is worth it. The league might decide the corporate suite market in Oakland is too poor and that it would be better to hold on to that $200 million for the Chargers, Bills or Dolphins, who don’t have brand spanking new stadiums they can use in their market.

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