Kaplan returns Wolff campaign donations; Coliseum City courts hedge fund

Last week the Trib’s Matthew Artz asked Oakland City Council member and mayoral candidate Rebecca Kaplan about $2,100 in donations that came from Lew Wolff, his wife and daughter. There was a suggestion of impropriety, as an Oakland law prohibits campaign contributions from any party that has done contract negotiations with the City during the prior six months. After huddling with her staff over the legality of the donations, Kaplan decided to return the checks. Wolff appeared to be unaware of the law. You may remember that Wolff donated a much more eye popping sum of $25,000 to a committee backing Don Perata’s mayoral campaign during the 2010 election, a move that may have helped cost Perata the election. Perata admitted that he wasn’t going to waste time or money trying to keep the A’s in town.

That’s a much different stance than Kaplan today, as she has staked a claim to helping save the A’s by spearheading lease extension talks. Kaplan has also supported Coliseum City, though the project is considered Mayor Jean Quan’s baby, at least politically. The now returned donations are under investigation by the California Fair Political Practices Commission, as is another $1,000 that was donated to a Kaplan committee whose fund has been liquidated under similar concerns.

Kaplan has been the frontrunner in recent polls, beating Quan in a projected ranked choice voting scenario. It’s unclear what damage the donation investigation could cause the Kaplan campaign, which is only three weeks from the election.

Matier and Ross reported over the weekend that Coliseum City is getting cozy with yet a hedge fund to potentially finance the project. The SF Business Times revealed that the target is Perry Capital, a fund managed by Paul Leff and Dan Golding. They purchased a non-voting, minority share (20%) of the Raiders for $150 million from Al Davis before his death. The fact that Perry already owns a share of the team gives the story more credence than previous stories about the Crown Prince of Dubai. Then again, let’s keep in mind the rather unimpressive amount of financial support for the project so far:

Forest City backed out because they didn’t see the numbers working out. Colony/HayaH has purportedly been hesitant to fully commit for similar reasons. The Dubai story was just that, a story, and Perry Capital? Well, at least there’s an existing relationship there. There’s a $500-600 million funding gap that needs to be addressed. If Perry is going to assume a large percentage, they’ll want their pound of flesh in return. That could mean a larger slice of the team, though Mark Davis is reluctant to drop below a controlling percentage, which in the NFL has been 30% for a family and 10% for a controlling partner in that family. Davis and his mother own 50-51%, so there’s some room to drop. The NFL may also be looking to lower the requirements for legacy family ownerships.

It’s hard to judge based on the limited information we have, but we can assume that trading in a share of the team for a private stadium subsidy (to be paid back by a rise in team equity and development revenues) is an option available in both Oakland and Los Angeles, and perhaps in San Antonio as well. Leff and Golding have seen their investment appeciate 29% since their 2007 purchase, which seems impressive enough except when compared to the skyrocketing values of many other NFL teams. The Raiders for now are a low revenue team in a low value market, with the only obvious recourse being the construction and selling out of a new stadium. Leff and Golding could push hard and try to bring in even more partners to spread out the risk. The problem is that Coliseum City is clearly a long game, with significant profits going to pay for the stadium and ancillary development. Rental and real estate sales revenue are the prize that will take years to materialize.

The struggle to attain financing for Coliseum City highlights how different Coliseum City is from other NFL stadium development plans. The NFL and the Raiders at first wanted to focus on the stadium, with further development coming down the line and not necessarily tied to stadium loans or bonds. The league has a very sophisticated financing structure in place. It gauges the size of the stadium project, assesses the ability of the applicant team to pay for its share, and doles out loans from its G-4 program. The league also plays matchmaker, hooking team owners up with huge financial institutions like Goldman Sachs and BofA. Those banks are there to manage that funding gap, the same kind that Coliseum City is trying to fill for the Raiders. When Oakland decided to move in their own direction, the NFL decided to play wait-and-see with the project. If JRDV and the other CC principals can pull it together, the NFL can give the project its blessing and untie the G-4 purse strings. If not, Oakland’s future will look very bleak on the Raiders front. It makes one wonder why they’re going to so much trouble when there is a tried-and-true method to financing a new NFL stadium. It limits the number of potential partners in favor of a high-risk strategy with a low chance of success. And if they’re having to resort to working with a hedge fund, the usual avenues for funding may all be exhausted.

There is some historical symmetry to this effort, as the original Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Complex was privately financed after Bob Nahas and others went to some far-flung places to secure that funding. The ENA deadline is October 21, and news of a new partner may allow Oakland to extend the period six months, though such a transparent move isn’t likely to gain Mark Davis’s support. The development team has spent three years and $5 million on Coliseum City. What do they have to show for it? So far, not much beyond the 3,500 pages in the EIR.

69 thoughts on “Kaplan returns Wolff campaign donations; Coliseum City courts hedge fund

  1. If that ENA is extended, it’ basically saying No to the A’s, who are not going to be part of that project. That would give Wolff even more ammo to tell MLB, “Oakland wants the Raiders,” no?

    • @pjk: I hate to say this but i think the ENA will get extended and by next year, the Raiders will announce their intentions to move to either L.A. or San Antonio after the Super Bowl. I think you’ve been right all along. Oakland has no money.

    • I don’t think if the ENA is extended it means “no to the A’s.” It depends on the length of the extension, other factors.

  2. Speaking of ancillary development, it’ll be interesting to see how the planned development across from Levi’s (between Tasman, Great America Parkway, Lafayette, and Great America Way) plays out. In that case, it’s obviously not directly tied to the building of the stadium, but it does provide an interesting comparison to the model favored so far for CC development.

  3. It seems apparent that what Oakland needs to get new stadiums via its Coliseum City project is not investors. It needs charitable contributors – organizations willing to spend Big $$ and not expect any return on their investment. Good luck with that.

    • @pjk- There would be a nice return on investment from the development itself. Not so much the stadium of course, but there is an opportunity here.

      This is why Wolff is all of a sudden interested in the Coli site when before he was not. He is trying to win a tug of war with the Raiders.

      It seems investors are interested but Oakland cannot nail one of them down with a proposal that works for either the Raiders or A’s. The city/county have to broker this deal but do not have the business acumen to do so and neither does Mark Davis.

      Only Wolff has acumen to pull this off without any 3rd party investors. He has John Fisher to help make it happen on his own. I am sure Fisher would invest in a development with Wolff running it on the Coli site.

      This is where Oakland fails……they are siding with the wrong people.

      • Instead of siding with the A’s owners, who are a turnkey operation that can develop real estate and get a stadium built (for reference, see: Earthquakes stadium), Oakland is siding with 3rd party developers who will all want massive profits and a football team owner who doesn’t have the resources to contribute to the project and no development experience. And, of course, the project as configured now tries to build a $1 billion football stadium to be used 10 days a year instead of the logical choice of a $500 million baseball stadium used 80+ days a year. As a result, nothing is getting done except more talk, talk, talk.

  4. As if to complicate matters more…the San Diego Chargers announced this afternoon they will be opposed to any team moving into Los Angeles based on territorial claims. (Where have we heard this before?). Charges indicate 30% of their fan base lives in the LA area and a new team would hurt their attendance & revenues. WOW…if this goes to court then LA will be without a team for another 10 years and the Rams & Raiders will be stuck.

    • There is a huge difference between the Chargers and the Giants. That being the Giants actually have a claim to the specific territory under the league’s constitution/operating agreement. The Chargers don;t have a similar benefit in the NFL’s case. They can try and sue to block it, but they’d have a hard time winning.

      • Maybe the Yankees should claim the state of Florida as their territory. They have a lot of fans there.

      • There are more Yankee fans in the Tampa area than there are Rays fans. It’s sad for the Rays.

      • MLB is questioning the giants owners on why the giants believe the A’s are going to damage the giants fanbase by moving 40 miles further from Frisco.

    • The Chargers have no legal claim to the LA market at all. They wield no veto threat over a team moving to LA.

      • LA is 100something miles from San Diego and the Chargers are going to stop a team from moving there, even though the 49ers couldn’t stop the Raiders from moving 8 miles away from them in 1995?

      • They would if they could, but they can’t. If anything, you’d expect that resistance to another team moving there to drive them to directly take the LA market themselves.

      • They can’t formally block it, but they can work against it. Just like Jerry Jones intends to do against any team moving into San Antonio. Neither city is strictly the market of the Chargers and Cowboys, only secondary markets, but both owners are long time members of the club who wield the influence that comes with that.

      • The interesting thing here is really, “Do the Chargers jump at LA to protect their So Cal position?”

        They can either use the potential jump as leverage against SD, or they can make the jump and keep the Raiders out.

        Unless those reports of the Raiders and Seahawks swapping divisions was so the Chargers and Raiders could share LA (trial balloon, I’d doubt it was an actual “plan” at this point).

  5. @pjk

    Oakland can still keep the Raiders by asking the A’s ownership to build a ballpark away from the Coliseum. With Derek Carr playing at a high level..the future is bright for Oakland. It’s all about having popular players which will translate into winning and more money for a new stadium. So I feel that Coliseum City has a chance.

    R.i.p San jose

    • It’s not just hardly delusional to think that Coloseum City remotely hinges on Derek Carr or that the A’s will build somewhere else in Oakland because the Raiders ask them to. But, please, pass the doobage.

  6. In the back of my mind I had a clue that the SF Giants would get to another world series maybe win it. If that happens 3 currently the championship to the A’s 4 will hurt the A’s market even more. Disappointed in Lew Wolff and Billy Beane. We should have had a world series by now. Maybe it’s the A’s who should pack up and leave and not the Raiders. Think about it

  7. If the A’s had a better alternative, they might leave, but the Bay Area is too lucrative to leave to one team. The Giants’ ticket prices would make Boston look cheap.

    • Well you know what??..tough cookies. The SF Giants have a more diverse roster, their manager is the Bill Belichick of baseball, the commercials, ads etc. Etc….look as a A’s fan WE SHOULD have at least 1 damn world series right now and I’m getting tired of ownership and management. Either get with Oakland program or DIP!!! The Sf giants will still be a great view from Oakland so the A’s better get going with Coliseum City and working to get a better diverse bullpen and stop trading away young talent for these old farts that left their heart in Boston…smh

  8. @Todd:

    please put the pipe down. Carr matters ? The money matters and until MDavis can come up with 500mils, he will not get a free stadium anywhere.

    • He don’t have to get a free stadium….. But he could get a A’s free stadium so he can maximize the Mount Davis Coliseum. A’s who have broke my heart for the last time have plenty of room to build a ballpark next to the Coliseum. Play nice.

      • It’s not a question of having space. It’s a question of having the finances work out. And there is no indication so far that that building 2 new stadiums on the land (let alone one) is financially viable.

      • re: And there is no indication so far that that building 2 new stadiums on the land (let alone one) is financially viable. Not viable without lots of public funding, anyway. And we all know Oakland/Alameda County has none to offer.

      • It’s not a question of space?
        It sure was a question of space 6-12 moths back, this board was littered with comments about there not being enough room to build two new sporting venues at the coliseum site, and then we found out that there were not 120-150 acers available (as many were thinking), there were more like 535 acers that were available, although there is some question, as to how much of those acers can be built on in an economically viable way, but the fact is there was more then we may have originally believed, along with other parcels that could be purchased.
        finically viable?
        Now it’s a question of finically viability, because there is plenty of space. Well finically viable can be a relative term, when people want it to be. I’m not suggesting that Davis, or Wolff build venues at the coliseum site, without regard for their investment, I not even suggesting they build on the cite, after all they own the teams, they don’t have to build there, but this idea that it’s not viable is ridicules, if Wolff or Davis want it to be viable it will be, there is plenty of land with great redevelopment potential.
        I hope when Wolff, or Davis make their arguments for relocation, to their perspective leagues, they use some of our comments here, because it seems to be of a tilt toward Oakland/Alameda Counties constant comedy of errors, rather than Davis or Wolff making little to no real effort.

      • Neil, hold on a second. It’s not about enough room to build stadiums and I don’t ever remember anyone saying that. It’s about enough room to develop an adjacent district and make enough money to finance two stadiums. Those are different issues altogether. They have been the same issues from day one.

        “After running through this little comparison, I think it is safe to say that the real answer to where they should play in the long run, from an ownership perspective is how this financing model can be tweaked to make the stadium actually happen. As Iggy said, “Who is gonna pay for it?” Or more accurately, how are the A’s gonna pay for it? I will personally support a new Oakland stadium or a new San Jose stadium as long as that financing question is answered and it matches deMause’s 10% number in San Francisco.”

        I wrote that on Feb 26th, 2009 for a piece on Athletics Nation. It still applies 100%

      • @jeffreyaugust
        I guess we read things differently, I can recall on several occasions when people made the argument that there was not enough space, which at the moment has switch to finical viability, I’m not saying that no one brought up the idea of final viability at the time, as I said that’s a valid consideration, and at the end of the day the teams belong to Davis and Wolff, they don’t have to build at the site and in my opinion they should not be forced to do so, but at the same time I’m not under any illusion that either of them have made the sort of effort they could of. (Not to suggest you personally are)

      • @jeffreyaugust
        I’m not with the “He lied, he never tried” crowed, but I am with the “He white-lied, he did not try as hard as he could of”, or the “He tried, because he had little to no choice” crowed.
        I guess my point is, what it always seems to be, and that is, for as much as Oakland/Alameda county has really messed up, Davis in particular has done little to nothing, to try to make this happen.
        I will withhold judgment on Wolff, in hopes that his recent efforts are sincere.

      • Yeah, we read it differently. If any of the “not enough space” thing was on my part (I have said something like that) I want to clarify that I was talking about the space in terms of ancillary development to fund stadium construction. It’s really easy to see, even in the Coliseum City renders, that there is plenty of room in the parking lot to build two physical structures.

  9. How can anyone say that Oakland is a “low value market” when the Forty Niners are nearly 50 miles from San Francisco, Berkeley and Oakland.

    Mark Davis needs a winning team and all of a sudden the attraction of traveling to Santa Clara to fight traffic, pay exorbitant prices, and cook in the heat, is not very alluring.

    A winning team in Oakland just ten miles from downtown SF, would be huge. Let’s also not forgett access to the Coliseum bart station linking the stadium to all of the East Bay, and all of San Francisco.

    The reason that Oakland wants a huge project like Coliseum City is that they realizes that stand alone stadiums in suburban out of downtown locations do nothing for the economies of cities. It makes perfect sense to include a huge development like Coliseum City if a municipality has funds involved in the development.

    Also, Rebecca Kaplan probably just ruined her chances at being Mayor by accepting money from Lew Wolff. Everyone knows Wolff has never had the best interest of Oakland at heart. Wolff ruined Peralta’s chance’s with his 25,000 dollar contribution to a candidate he knew would allow him to abandon Oakland. Now Wolff went out of his way to have his family members give in order to maximize the contribution. Wolff wanted a convenient lease with an escape clause in Oakland and Kaplan was foolish enough to give him one. Now Wolff gets the lease AND the money returned. Not bad at all

    • There’s a reason nobody takes you seriously. Repeating the same shit over and over again — especially when it is usually a combination of conjecture, opinion, and factually false statements — does not make it true.

    • Three years for Coliseum City and running, Elmano. No deals, no financing, no construction. The only franchise wiling to participate is now studying a move to either San Antonio or LA. What’s up with that?

    • Hate to break it to you, but 49er fans aren’t going to magically become Raider fans just because of traffic. They’ll just stay home and watch the game. When it comes to the Raiders, the 49ers are entirely irrelevant. The NFL’s economics makes it that way. Completely unlike MLB.

  10. We all know the reason that financing for Coliseum City has not fully come through, is because Lew Wolff has injected himself into the situation in hopes of getting “kicked out” by the Raiders. Wolff just wants to derail the project without ever committing to Oakland. This is the reason he hates Howard Terminal and all of a sudden fell in love with the Coliseum area.

    • You do know that the financing was falling through well before Wolff “injected” himself into the situation right? They were having financing issues last year, when Wolff was still issuing the “Hell no” mantra you so hated.

    • You are truly delusional. Lew Wolff caused Forest City to back out months and months ago by injecting himself into the process recently? Do you even think before you type?

    • Bitter, bitter, bitter, Elmano. Howard Terminal is DOA because it is not feasible. And it is not Lew Wolff’s fault that Coliseum City also is unfeasible, that the existing stadium was ruined, that Oakland/Alameda County is saddled with all this debt from the now-tarped Mount Davis construction. Oakland’s best bet to keep any of its teams is to turn over the Coliseum property to Wolff and Fisher. That’s just reality.

  11. This project would be very feasible if we had two willing partners in the A’s and Raiders.

    Mark Davis wants to stay in Oakland and Lew Wolff wants to derail Coliseum City, have the Raiders “kick him out” just so that he could have a convenient lease which lets him leave Oakland in three years while taking 5 million dollars with him which was owed to Oakland.

    Rebecca Kaplan should would draw from the Oakland Mayor’s race based on her decision to support such a horrible lease for Oakland which also throws a monkey wrench into the Coliseum City project.

    The Raiders want Oakland while Wolff wants to “be kicked out of Oakland.”


    • It’s a good thing you aren’t in charge of a business. Because you have repeatedly shown that you don’t even understand the most extremely basic concepts behind how to run one. You let us know when the Raiders and A’s become 501(c)(3) organizations.

  12. Unless there is something we don’t know, it appears that Davis is not even working with the Bay IG, if that’s simply because he wants to appear to have made the “Good Faith”, effort that the NFL requires before he can move to San Antonio, LA, or if it’s just that the Bay IG, really is not a good finical partner for this project, or Oakland/Alameda county have not come up off enough of the tax payers money, whatever the reason, it looks like Davis really isn’t trying.
    Oakland needs to go with Wolff, if what he is talking about is for real. I sure hope what has been reported concerning Wolff and his efforts with the JPA are for real, because they truly look as though they are Oakland’s only hope to retain one of its franchises, perhaps even two if Wolff is willing to listen to what the Raiders have to say, provided they even have anything to say of course.

  13. PJK,

    You seem to be attributing Lew Wolff’s strategy with MLB, to Mark Davis.

    Which Lew Wolff should Oakland officials believe, the one who tells the Mayor of San Jose and MLB.com one thing, or the one who tells Oakland officials that he’s interested in building in Oakland just before he obtained his convenient lease?

    Another thing many here fogett is that by saying “he’ll no” for so long regarding Coliseum City, Wolff has affected the ability of the investors to get financing and pencil out the Coliseum City development.

    Wolff is the biggest obstacle in this Coliseum City situation. I believe Mark Davis is sincere when he says he wants to stay in Oakland. Wolff on the other hand is playing games, attempting to derail Coliseum City, and implying that he wants to build on the site without giving Oakland any guarantees or even a plan. If Oakland listens to Wolff they’ll likely end up without Coliseum City, the Raiders and the A’s.

    • Good thing Wolff said “Hell no.” The A’s need to be in control, not some kind of subtenant. Hasn’t the CC plan called for the A’s getting a ballpark in something like 8 years? No thanks…Once again, we have Elmano whining about Lew Wolff, who has not asked for any public money and wants to build a stadium in Oakland, and not Mark Davis, who is meeting with folks in San Antonio and probably LA, and says he “needs help” getting a new stadium in Oakland. Go figure.

  14. PJK,

    What are you talking about with your “contributing free stadiums to Oakland?”

    Who is going to use those stadiums? Who wants those stadiums? Are those stadiums going to be used by the citizens of Oakland for recreational football and baseball? Are Oakland high schools going to use those stadiums? Will we see Jean Quan and Rebecca Kaplan throwing a frisbee inside the stadiums?

    These stadiums are for the benefit of the billionaires so that they can become wealthier. Lew Wolff and John Fisher don’t need our help. If they want the stadium then go ahead and build the darn stadium and stop expecting anyone to subsidize your plan. If Wolff doesn’t want to be in Oakland, then Oakland shouldn’t be subsidizing him with a crummy 1.5 million dollar yearly lease for a huge sports complex, which BTW, is less than the A’s pay for some utility infielders.

    • Let me explain: These stadiums are very very very expensive. That’s why teams in every other city expect public money to build them. The A’s merely want development rights so they can make a return on their investment. The “Fisher is rich and can afford to lose Big $$ building a stadium in Oakland” plan is never going to happen, Elmano. Hope that clears things up for you, Elmano. You still act like the MLB is privileged to be in Oakland and not the other way around.

      • MLB should be privileged to be in Oakland. I don’t expect the Oakland is “less than” crowd to agree with me, but Oakland is a vibrant city in the geographic center of the Bay Area with great weather, fantastic public transit and great freeway access.

        Investors who believe in Oakland are rewarded. Many people had doubts about investing so much money in the Fox Theater and now it is the most sought after, highly booked theater in he Bay Area. The new entertainment venue in Jack London Square called “Plank” is so busy the staff can’t even keep up with the crowd in the 1,000 seat venue.

        We have people who believe in Oakland and are rewarded, and we have people like PJK and Lew Wolff who view Oakland as “less than” and as a charity case.

    • Then why doesn’t Mark Davis fund his own fucking stadium? You’re only attacking Wolff and Fisher and it’s completely hypocritical. Why do you make ZERO effort to make consistent arguments?

  15. MLB subsidizes the A’s to the tune of about $35 million a year, Elmano. Oakland is a cost center, not a profit center, for MLB. Looks like the center of the Bay Area, transit access, blah blah, hasn’t accounted for much. Keep on feeling entitled to a free ballpark, though…The 49ers had a chance to build in Oakland, with the BART access, etc, but went to Santa Clara instead. Go figure.

    • MLB subsidizes half the league. It’s what leagues do and the A’s make money in Oakland. The Giants make money in SF. We’ve had over 5 million fans watch baseball in the Bay Area this year.

      PJK, you should start holding Wolff, Fisher and Beane responsible for their lousy business decisions, both off, and on the field, for the A’s not attaining their full potential in Oakland. Instead, you blame Oakland as a location for the franchise.

      Oakland drew more fans than Kansas City. Why is MLB subsidizing Kansas City and why has Kansas City drawn fewer fans than “Hawwwrible” Oakland?”

  16. I don’t know how many teams are on revenue-sharing but the A’s are amongst the biggest benefactors. If you think the other owners are happy to write out checks to subsidize the A’s every year, think again. In any other franchise-based business, such as a fast food chain, money-losing franchises are shut down or relocated. And once again, the A’s in Oakland are well within the bottom half of attendance every year, despite rock-bottom prices and usually a good team. Doesn’t sound like a very good market for Major League Baseball.

    • PJK,

      Your confusing fast food franchises with MLB teams.

      Next time one Burger King franchise needs another Burger King franchise in order to be able to deliver burgers to their customers, give me a call.

      A fast food franchise can sell their product without necessarily having other franchises around. MLB franchises need each other in order to deliver the product.

      • So you’re saying money-losing franchises are needed to help money-making franchises? Not exactly. It’s the other way around. MLB wants all of its franchises making money. It doesn’t want to subsidize a franchise that has to play in a 50-year-old football stadium because, unlike about 29 other MLB cities, the host city has failed for decades to get a new ballpark done.

  17. Yay! Elmano and PJK flame war!!!! Familiarity breeds contentment.

    • Sometimes, I think Elmano is just not serious, with some of the stuff he comes out with, and wants to see what kind of reactions he can get.

    • @ Elmano/pjk

      Can’t you guys just agree to disagree?

      • You’re operating under the false assumption that Elmano is here for anything other than willfully ignorant trolling. That’s the ONLY reason he’s here. Always has been, always will be.

      • @ SMG

        I guess I’m also operating on the false assumption, that pjk can actually keep from being drown in and becoming almost as repetitive as most claim Elmano can be.

      • Would you rather read repetition that has at least some basis in reality and publicly available information or repetition that is 100% emotionally based and bordering on conspiracy theory?

      • @Lakeshore/Neil – Exactly. These two can’t control themselves. It’s embarrassing. Find another hobby.

  18. There’s nothing embarrassing about pointing out inconsistencies in Lew Wolff’s behavior. Are we here to have interesting discussions or just parrot Lew Wolff’s policies?

    We all have opinions and having a discussion shouldn’t be considered a “flame war.” Do you want an interesting blog or just the same old repetitive “Oakland is not good enough” and “San Jose has a zillion corporations” dialogue?

  19. I don’t know. Maybe.

    What really bothers me is that we are sitting here debating while the team we dominated during the season, and which we were better than in every position with the exception of catcher and shortstop, is now probably headed to the World Series.

    Billy Beane “the genius” ruined our wonderful TEAM and now we have to watch the Bay Area once again fawn over the San Francisco Giants.

    This is what I mean when I say this organization fails to reach its potential both off and on the field with irresponsible trades and lack of marketing. Billy Beane continues to show lack of judgement as far as talent. The Giants have a closer who was on our roster but was never given a real chance. Chris Carter is hitting 30+ homers in Houston. ABad has been an incredible reliever but was never given a chance at the closer spot. We gave horrible O’Flarretty a chance to blow a couple of games while Abad just sat in the bullpen.

    It’s OK to have a Black man as closer Billy.

    • re: Billy Beane “the genius” ruined our wonderful TEAM and now we have to watch the Bay Area once again fawn over the San Francisco Giants. …Elmano nails this. A season of the A’s being in first place, probably ending with the Giants winning the World Series. And how is this supposed to be fun? The Giants don’t lose in the post season and the A’s don’t win. Looks like Brad Pitt made a movie about the wrong Bay Area GM.

    • All right, that’s enough. Thread closed because you idiots (Elmano/pjk) have to spout off every single idle, meaningless thought that comes from your mind.

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