What to expect when you’re not expecting

Word came Friday that Floyd Kephart is out from the Coliseum City project, which, you might think, should lead to the demise of Coliseum City.

With Kephart’s negotiating rights set to expire on Thursday, the Oakland City Council and Alameda County Board of Supervisors agreed in separate closed door meetings this week to cut ties and send him a letter outlining deficiencies in his latest proposal, said several officials who asked not to be named because the talks were private.

So that’s that. The deficiencies were largely financial, as we’ve discussed ad nauseum. Having three separate groups try and fail at making Coliseum City work is a clear indicator that there’s really nothing that will make it work, at least the way Oakland wants it to. Part of that is the Raiders’ and A’s insistence on maintaining surface parking instead of allowing for a bunch of development surrounding the stadia. Another factor is the extremely limited public resources on hand, especially in the face of outstanding debt on both the old stadium and arena. The stadium debt is not only an obstacle, it is a potential showstopper. Nine figures of debt doesn’t simply get written off if you’re a municipality.

coliseum-city2-sm

Add this rendering to the long and growing list of failed stadium projects

Oakland and Alameda County continue to talk to the teams, while also exploring a buyout of the County. Alright, before any proposals are made or any substantive talks are to begin with either team, the buyout situation absolutely has to be sussed out. The uncertainty regarding the County’s involvement, which lingered in the background for over a year before becoming a front-and-center in January and remains an unresolved issue to this day, cannot be allowed to complicate any future stadium talks. Either the County is fully out or it will be a partner. There is no in-between. If it comes up again, it will show the NFL and MLB that the East Bay can’t get its act together and can’t be taken seriously. It’s that important.

The buyout is not going to be easy. Normally these types of deals are worked out through swaps of real estate, since municipalities tend to be cash-strapped. Whether that’s workable for the County is another matter, since there is actual cash to be paid out on an annual basis by both parties. If both parties decide to follow through on the County’s wishes, I would expect the deal to be wrapped up in the next six months.

Next, all of the important players are going to have to step it up to a degree that they haven’t displayed so far. That includes:

  • Lew Wolff and/or Mark Davis
  • Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf
  • Scott Haggerty, Alameda County Supervisor and President of the BoS (if County continues to be involved)

Wolff and Davis will have to provide detailed plans for whatever they want to build at and around the Coliseum. That’s not a problem for Wolff, since he already has HOK working on it. On the other hand, Davis has no such experience and will have to rely heavily on a third party to work out the details. That is, if the Raiders are still staying in Oakland past January. Davis is actively involved in the Carson stadium project. If the NFL puts off the LA decision for a year, or tells Davis to stay put for a while, Oakland will have no choice but to work with him on whatever stadium idea he’s thinking of. Schaaf will have to become a much more visible champion of the project, similar to what Quan did for Coliseum City. Haggerty, who was a leading public figure for the Fremont stadium project, would likely do the same here, with the possibility of fellow supe Nate Miley partnering or taking the lead. Basically, both the public and private sector will need champions, willing to bear the scrutiny and spend money/assign resources to get the project(s) through the planning process.

There’s no timetable for any of this to happen thus far. We may hear more towards the end of the year. I sort of expect the A’s to release renderings and initial plans sometime after the season ends, though I wouldn’t be surprised if that didn’t happen. Procedurally, everyone’s still at the mercy of the NFL, since it actually has its a timetable – one subject to delay – but a timetable nevertheless. Sure, the path towards a new stadium at the Coliseum is less complex with Coliseum City out of the way. Don’t mistake that as being close to a deal. There’s still an extremely long way to go, and many complications to resolve.

P.S. – I neglected to mention the status of the Coliseum land. Ten or twenty years ago, the notion of giving away or highly discounting public land in order to ink a stadium deal was considered a mere cost of doing business. It was the much more politically expedient concept to giving away both the land and a heavy construction subsidy, which most cities were and still are doing. Over the last year groups have protested giving away the 120+ acres at the Coliseum because it represents a giveaway to billionaires, while also not properly addressing the growing housing crunch and concerns about gentrification in East Oakland. What was once practically a given (as it was for the SF Giants in 1997) is now shaping up to be political land mine if not handled properly. As Schaaf and the City Council work out the land DDA (development and disposition agreement), they’ll have to be mindful of how the deal looks to the public. That’s sometimes what happens when parties (cities, teams) don’t act quickly enough. It only gets harder.

104 thoughts on “What to expect when you’re not expecting

  1. gentrification in deep East Oakland? not quite

  2. @ML- I thought LW made it clear he was against the county pulling out as they have access to resources that the city alone doesn’t.

  3. Current lack of gentrification in East Oakland does not mean it won’t be a big issue whenever a plan does come up. Oakland politicians have to answer to Oakland voters, not Raiders fans from San Leandro, Hayward, Sacramento, etc

  4. “Gentrification” is just part of the times. Rather see a brand new stadium with some restaurants and bars/lounges and movie theater on the existing site than low income or section 8 housing. Ugh

  5. Go Raiders! Coaching staff and players showed true mental physical grit yesterday by stepping the heck up after the bad showing last week. Offense knows what it can do now. Spreading the ball around and getting everyone involved is the way to go obviously! Too many weapons. D needs to generate a pass rush….if 4 can’t do it…bring the blitz and the heat!

    • If Raiders have a good season and actually can make the playoffs then it only gets harder for Schaaf to continue to prioritize the A’s (or so she claims). Ultimately this whole thing is being set up as a nasty fight between Raiders and A’s fans unless Oakland has enough property rights to give away to both teams to make private development of these stadiums feasible. I have a hard time believing that….

  6. Kephart getting thrown out is just another example of the ineptitude of Alameda County/Oakland.

    They both refused to negotiate with the Raiders or bring them to the table to hammer out an agreement with Kephart to get this done.

    Kephart established a set of parameters, the fact Oakland/Alameda County refused to use those parameters with Mark Davis and make something happen shows why they cannot be trusted.

    Dealing with the Raiders directly is not going to solve the problem. Someone (like Kephart but smarter) has to come in and raise the money to build the stadium like Jed York did in Santa Clara.

    We all know Mark Davis/Oakland/Alameda County refuse to step up. The City/County keep crying about the current debt but refuse to acknowledge this is 2015 and not 1995.

    And Mark Davis is a spoiled rich kid who wants his stadium handed to him on a platter.

    In 1995 the JPA only offered a 10 year team for PSLs when the fan base was not there yet because it had been 13 years since the team left.

    The Raiders have organically grew back their fan base in NorCal over 20 years and would invest to keep the team here with some kind of lifetime guarantee like the 49ers offered to their fans.

    The 900M can be raised through the same mechanisms the 49ers used on a smaller level (55k person stadium vs. 70k person stadium) and there is a brand new Raiders stadium on the current site.

    The 400M gap is only because of the basic refusal of the Raiders/City/County to raise it and sell their fans.

    It would help if the team got good, but the NFL is that popular in 2015. This can be done

    • haha….Davis a spoiled rich kid….but oh wait…he is not a “billionaire” is he? As the NFL wants him to be….a person who is multi millioniare is still not considered enough money! SMH

  7. wake me up, when September ends…

  8. Seems like another milestone is the SCOTUS deciding whether to take SJ’s case; if they do, this adds much more time and confusion to the situation. Since most legal sages say it won’t take the appeal, it’ll be up to Wolff and Schaaf to get a new ballpark moving. They really should move on it — how much longer can Beane use the excuse that he can’t put together a good team until there’s a new ballpark?

    I can’t see how the Raiders are still in play in Oakland given the huge funding gap for a new football stadium. If CC was supposed to allow new development to bridge the funding gap, I don’t see where they get the money without CC. The only possibility would be if they decide to stay at a somewhat renovated O.co, spending only what they can afford to improve it, with the A’s building a new ballpark next door. Otherwise, it’s Levi or Carson.

    • SCOTUS will decide on the SJ vs MLB case next Monday, 9/28. Odds are it won’t take the case , but at least one more issue will be resolved. If they take the case, MLB will fold and allow the A’s to move to SJ. MLB does not won’t to risk their ATE in court.
      No matter what, both teams will not share the coliseum property. Talk of the Raiders in Carson is not likely to happen… look for the Rams in Inglewood. I still like a renovated coliseum for the Raiders, and the A’s to SJ! JMO

      • @KA, I agree! A less costly partial rebuild/renovation of the Coliseum makes the most sense, and is the way to go for the Raiders. Most importantly, I believe it’s financially doable. As for the A’s, let the A’s build their own stadium on the Bay Area site of their choice in San Jose. Bingo! Stadium problems resolved for both teams.

      • Here is what happens (or doesn’t happen) on Monday….

        IF the justices may decide to talk about it… they MAY immediately decide the case, either in favor or against SJ. They MAY also decide to hear arguments in court and THEN decide.

        IF the justices do not talk about the case at all… it is over by default and SJ loses. No opinions or write-ups issued. Lower court decision stands as-is.

        Odds are the same for any case being heard by them. This one is not special. However, I think this one actually has a better chance than most simply because it was the opinions of the lower courts that they had no jurisdiction to overturn the ATE because it was the SCOTUS who created it so only the SCOTUS can take it away. In other words, the lower courts are asking the SCOTUS to decide.

      • By all rights….SCOTUS should take the case. Baseballs ATE is archaic and really does need to be abolished.

  9. No matter what happens, some one need to STEP UP and GET IT DONE!

  10. People who are dismissing the Raiders to St. Louis possibility out of hand are in denial. I’m not saying that’s what will happen, but it is at least as likely as Raiders to Carson, Santa Clara or Oakland.

    • You have a good point, but “as likely” I wouldn’t go that far.

      • @Lakeshore Based on what? New reports today suggest the NFL would rather see one team in LA, which would seem to give Kroenke the edge in taking the market. If the Rams move to LA and St. Louis is sitting there with $400 million in public funds to build a stadium (and the NFL’s full support for doing so), what alternate scenario are you seeing for the Raiders that’s more economically beneficial and achievable?

        Again, when handicapping these things, assuming wealthy decision makers will take the alternative that makes them the most money is usually a good way to go. I don’t doubt Mark Davis would rather end up somewhere other than St. Louis, but economic considerations usually win over subjective preferences.

      • @ bartleby
        I really don’t disagree with you, accept the “as likely” part, you make a good argument but the NFL may not want to put a third team in a market that has failed twice.
        I also think Davis would rather stay put in Oakland (live to fight another day), rather than go to St. Louis. What would he have to lose? The A’s already have the ten year lease, I think Davis would just go along with the status que, hoping that someone would bail him out in the coming years, that may not happen but he could always be the second team in LA five years down the road (sine the NFL only wants one team right now), or finally give in and ask the 49ers if he can rent a while until things clear up in Oakland, or LA.
        There are other options still available, unless (or until) there isn’t I think St. Louis (public money or not), will be on the outside looking in.
        But hay, stranger things have happened… Like the Raiders returning to Oakland in the first place.

      • @ Lakeshore “I really don’t disagree with you, accept the “as likely” part, you make a good argument but the NFL may not want to put a third team in a market that has failed twice.”

        St. Louis has not “failed” as an NFL market any more than Houston, Cleveland or Baltimore failed as NFL markets or Seattle failed as an NBA market. In almost all cases, when franchises move it’s because they’ve gotten an insanely lucrative, tax payer funded stadium deal in a new market. (Which then prompts the abandoned market to put together their own insanely lucrative, tax payer funded stadium deal to lure a new team). The Texans, Browns and Ravens are all thriving in those so-called “failed” markets.

        If you actually go back and look at Rams attendance figures since they’ve been in St. Louis and then look at their win-loss records during that time frame, you’ll see that STL has been a very solid NFL market. Now consider that St. Louis bent over for the NFL in 1995 with the sweetheart deal that lured the Rams there in the first place, and not they’re about to bend over again only 20 years later to retain an NFL team. St. Louis is the NFL’s dream, and if they put together a publicly financed stadium deal they will definitely have an NFL team. Several NFL owners have already said as much,

        “I also think Davis would rather stay put in Oakland (live to fight another day), rather than go to St. Louis.”

        Maybe he would prefer it, but money talks.

        “What would he have to lose?”

        Money, and lots of it. $400 million in free tax money to begin with, and tens of millions more every year after that.

        “There are other options still available, unless (or until) there isn’t I think St. Louis (public money or not), will be on the outside looking in.”

        There are other options available, but they are substantially less lucrative. You still haven’t said exactly why Davis would choose one of those other options over $400 million in free tax money toward the cost of a new state-of-the-art stadium that would be his, and his alone.

      • @ bartleby
        Good points my friend, but I don’t think Houston, Cleveland, or Baltimore failed twice with two different franchises? Although I may be incorrect about Cleveland, as I think the Rams started there to begin with (not sure), so that would be two for them. (Rams and Browns the first time) I believe I’m correct about attest two of the three.
        “There are other options available, but they are substantially less lucrative. You still haven’t said exactly why Davis would choose one of those other options over $400 million in free tax money toward the cost of a new state-of-the-art stadium that would be his and his alone”
        Funny you should bring that up, Oakland was far less lucrative then LA and the Raiders still moved back. Marks Father and presumably his Mother will be laid to rest in Oakland the franchise’s roots are in Oakland, if it was just about a more lucrative deal then Mark probably would have moved back to LA by now.
        Anyway I’m not saying the Raiders won’t end up in St. Louis, I’m saying (IMHO), it’s not “as likely” as other places they could end up.

      • @ Lakeshore/Neil “Good points my friend, but I don’t think Houston, Cleveland, or Baltimore failed twice with two different franchises?”

        You’re missing the point. The point is that none of those cities “failed” as an NFL market even once.

        Having an NFL team leave is not “failure.” Typically it happens NOT because of lack of support in the original market, but because another market is willing to offer a sweetheart deal with lots of taxpayer money. Cleveland and Baltimore in particular were insanely support of their teams (as was Oakland before the Raiders left the first time) but lost them anyway.

        The NFL’s revenue sharing deal is such that virtually all revenue is shared except certain stadium revenue. Thus, the size of the market or rabidness of its support is far less important from an economic standpoint than how much public money it is willing to put into stadium construction and/or straight out bribes to move there (as I recall, in addition to taxpayer funding for the stadia themselves and favorable lease terms, both St. Louis and Baltimore gave substantial cash payments to the Rams and Ravens to move).

        St. Louis is a good NFL market and has been willing to pony up. It it continues to do so, it will retain an NFL team however the rest of this shakes out.

        “Funny you should bring that up, Oakland was far less lucrative then LA and the Raiders still moved back. Marks Father and presumably his Mother will be laid to rest in Oakland the franchise’s roots are in Oakland, if it was just about a more lucrative deal then Mark probably would have moved back to LA by now.”

        Al moved to LA because he thought it was going to be more lucrative, he just turned out to be wrong. The size of the market is irrelevant if you’re playing in LA Coliseum without club seats, suites and other stadium revenue generators. He moved back to Oakland because the 1995 deal gave him the suites and club seats he had been seeking for so long.

        I don’t doubt that the Davis family has some ties to the East Bay and perhaps Mark genuinely prefers to stay there. I’m just saying that’s not going to drive the decision. You forget, he’s actively trying to move to LA even as we speak (because…..wait for it…..he believes it will be more lucrative).

        “Anyway I’m not saying the Raiders won’t end up in St. Louis, I’m saying (IMHO), it’s not “as likely” as other places they could end up.”

        I’m standing by what I said. Consider the following probability projections for Raider landing spots:

        CARSON

        Variables:
        – Raiders/Chargers would need to be chosen by the NFL over the Rams.
        – San Diego’s plan to keep the Chargers probably needs to fall apart to keep the Chargers in the project.
        – Financing needs to pencil out.

        Prognosis: Not terribly likely (especially considering recent reports suggesting the NFL wants one team in LA, not two).

        SANTA CLARA

        Variables:
        – Mark Davis needs to decide being a tenant with limited access to stadium revenue streams is better than having his own stadium. To date he has said he is not interested, a statement which has credibility given his decision to remain in the crumbling Coliseum rather than move into Levi’s two years ago. (In fact, indications are that even staying at the Coli as-is makes more financial sense for the Raiders than moving to Levi’s).

        Prognosis: Very unlikely (especially if there were an offer of a publicly financed stadium from St. Louis as an alternative).

        SAN ANTONIO
        Variables:
        – Needs a stadium plan with substantial public financing.
        – All Raider alternatives for a new stadium in CA probably need to be exhausted.

        Prognosis: Unlikely (especially since San Antonio seems to be doing nothing to put a stadium plan together).

        INGLEWOOD

        Variables:
        – Kroenke needs to decide he wants an equity partner (one he doesn’t need to finance the project and that would eat into his profits).
        – Alternatively, Davis needs to decide he’s willing to be a tenant (a situation that would be just as non-lucrative as being a tenant in Santa Clara).
        – NFL needs to decide it wants two teams in LA.

        Prognosis: Extremely unlikely.

        OAKLAND

        Variables:
        – Mark Davis needs to put together and fully finance a new stadium plan (something he has not even hinted at doing, all the while working hard on a plan for Carson).
        – Alternatively, Mark Davis needs to decide we would settle for a remodel, something he has not hinted he would consider.
        – Alternatively, Mark Davis needs to decide he’s ok rotting in the Coliseum indefinitely (a scenario both he and the NFL have said is completely unacceptable)

        Prognosis: Unlikely

        ST LOUIS
        Variables:
        – Rams need to move to LA (which frankly seems the most likely outcome to their situation).
        – St. Louis needs to finalize a stadium plan with substantial public funding (which they are well on their way to doing).
        – NFL needs to support (which several owners have publicly indicated it likely would)
        – Raiders California options would need to fall apart (which as noted above, seems reasonably likely to happen).

        Prognosis: At least as likely as any of the alternatives above.

      • “You’re missing the point. The point is that none of those cities “failed” as an NFL market even once.”
        I don’t think I’m missing the point you sited two cities that lost a franchise, my point was that St. Louis has lost two, and I don’t think the NFL is in a hurry to give a city a chance at number three.
        It’s cool, we pretty much agree.

      • @Lakeshore/Neil “I don’t think I’m missing the point you sited two cities that lost a franchise, my point was that St. Louis has lost two,”

        Respectfully, I think you are missing the point. You persist in equating “losing a team” with “failure.” Losing a team is not failure. It happens mainly because another city has made a better stadium offer (which typically results in the first city upping its offer, to the NFL’s delight).

        If St. Louis lost its team because of persistently bad attendance despite winning teams AND an unwillingness to throw public money at the NFL, the NFL would view that as a failure. That’s not the case in St. Louis, which has had good attendance for mostly wretched teams and has shown a willingness to build not one but two publicly financed stadia in a little over two decades. The NFL absolutely LOVES St. Louis – it’s pretty much what they wish every city would be.

        “and I don’t think the NFL is in a hurry to give a city a chance at number three.”

        Again, they absolutely are in a hurry to give St. Louis a chance at a third team playing in a new publicly financed stadium – several NFL owners have already publicly said so. And if you understand NFL economics, the point should already be obvious.

      • @ bartleby

        I’m not missing the point, if I was the one to make the point in the first place. I said I thought St. Louis losing two NFL franchise’s was a failure. (especially since they have had two chances)

        You sited Houston, Baltimore, Cleveland, and Seattle (NBA Franchise),all of those cities only lost one NFL franchise or in the case of Seattle a NBA franchise, with perhaps Cleveland being the only exception, you went on to explain why these cities losing a franchise wasn’t really a failure in your opinion.
        Well I happen to think losing two different NFL teams is a much bigger deal then losing one, which of course your examples primary provided.
        Like I said we pretty much agree, so it’s cool.

    • @bartleby: The Raiders have sold out all of their 2015 games so far, St. Louis has been drawing 25K per game in 2015. The Raiders are 99.9% more likely staying at the Coliseum, moving to Levi’s, or Carson than moving to St. Louis (which will soon lose its 2nd NFL team in 29 years) Besides, Davis has already commented several times that he has no interest in St. Louis.

      • @duffer The Raiders “sell outs” are the product of having tarped over a large number of seats and offering some of the cheapest tickets in the NFL (especially in the club sections). Plus, there were lots of empty seats at the Ravens game, suggesting these “sell outs” are more the product of the NFL’s new relaxed blackout rule and the Raiders new found willingness to buy out unsold seats as much as any new found market demand.

        Your statistic for the Rams is just flatly wrong and seems to be made up. (I sort of remember you making up a similar statistic about the Rams previously). The Rams have played exactly one home this year for which they drew just under 52,000, which is very comparable to the Raiders average attendance of 54,000 so far. http://espn.go.com/nfl/attendance When you consider Rams ownership has made it clear they have no interest in St. Louis even if they get a publicly funded stadium while Raiders ownership has paid lip service to the idea of staying in the home market, it’s not surprising Rams attendance is lower than it would otherwise be.

        The Rams sold out every single game they played in St. Louis from 1995 until an 0-8 start in 2007. The fan base continued to show up in respectable numbers after that despite witnessing the worst five-year stretch in the history of the NFL, a stretch in which the team won seven home games in five years. Overall, the Rams attendance history in St. Louis has been far more impressive than the Raiders attendance history in Oakland over the same time period. Oakland is just as close to losing an NFL team a second time as St. Louis is.

        Listen, I bleed Silver and Black. But looking at this objectively, from an economic standpoint having sole possession of the St. Louis market and a state of the art, publicly financed stadium is WAY better than playing second banana to the Niners in the Bay Area whether its as their tenant, in a remodeled Coli, or even in a new privately financed stadium (assuming that could be accomplished). In fact, all of the alternate scenarios you mention would be economically inferior to a new stadium in St. Louis. Whey handicapping these things, assuming wealthy decision makers will take the alternative that makes them the most money is usually a good way to go.

      • @bartleby: The Raiders’ chances of moving to St. Louis are 0% (that likely also applies to all other NFL teams considering relocating to another market) the St Louis Rams attendance appears over inflated (their so called 50,000 attendance is likely 25- 30K) If they are selling 50,000 tickets per game – many fans evidently are declining to use those tickets and avoid going to Rams games.

        Also, it appears that Davis (along with the Rams owner Kroenke) have had no discussions with St Louis officials about moving to a future stadium there. Davis, however, evidently has had several discussions with Carson, Inglewood, San Antonio, and obviously Oakland city officials about new stadiums proposals.

      • Honestly, after my recent visit to St. Louis… I doubt any team will be there if the Rams leave, though rumors of Jacksonville being a target could bear fruit. St. Louis is like Sacramento that thinks it’s San Francisco.

      • @ duffer “The Raiders’ chances of moving to St. Louis are 0% (that likely also applies to all other NFL teams considering relocating to another market)”

        Given the accuracy of the numbers you’ve provided with respect to verifiable, fact-based statistics, you’ll understand why I’ll take your speculative probability projections with a grain of salt.

        “the St Louis Rams attendance appears over inflated (their so called 50,000 attendance is likely 25- 30K)”

        A completely speculative statement.

        “If they are selling 50,000 tickets per game – many fans evidently are declining to use those tickets and avoid going to Rams games.”

        The same could be said about the Raiders, and pretty much any team that hits some hard times (including teams like the Niners and Giants). Certainly when ownership is actively trying to move and won’t even pretend there’s an interest in staying it doesn’t help.

        “Also, it appears that Davis (along with the Rams owner Kroenke) have had no discussions with St Louis officials about moving to a future stadium there.”

        Of course not, there’s an incumbent team there. Such discussions won’t take place until and unless the Rams leave town. At that point, if St. Louis is sitting there with $400 million in free tax money and a stadium plan all ready to go and the Raiders haven’t worked something else out, you can bet there will be such discussions.

        “Davis, however, evidently has had several discussions with Carson, Inglewood, San Antonio, and obviously Oakland city officials about new stadiums proposals.”

        None of which has resulted in any offers of public money, and none of which (with the possible exception of Carson) has taken any steps toward becoming a real thing.

      • @jeffreyaugust

        “Honestly, after my recent visit to St. Louis… I doubt any team will be there if the Rams leave, though rumors of Jacksonville being a target could bear fruit. St. Louis is like Sacramento that thinks it’s San Francisco.”

        Why would you say that? As discussed in detail in my comments above, STL has been a very good market for the NFL. Perhaps more importantly, it has demonstrated a willingness to bend over for the NFL repeatedly. Several NFL owners have basically said, if St. Louis plays ball again it will have an NFL team.

      • Worth noting, in addition to the mention Mount Davis is being tarped off now (fittingly ironic, is it not?), capacity attendance is artificially peaked at a bit over 55k. That’s good for the second-smallest capacity in the NFL, and that’s only until the Vikings have their new stadium built. Every other stadium has a capacity of at least 61.5k (that’s Soldier Field).

        Even if Mount Davis wasn’t tarped, the 64k the Coliseum can hold would be in the bottom 5 of all NFL stadiums.

        At this point, 54k people in the Coliseum may be good for the Raiders and more or less in line with their recent averages, but it’s not good for the NFL.

      • By the way, yes – the A’s have been doing the tarp and artificially lower capacity thing for far longer, but we already know what their attendance situation has been like over the years, and we know they want to build a ballpark with a smaller size.

        The Raiders? They should be able to do better than the low 60k mark if they’re supposedly as popular as some claim, and if they attract so many people who travel from out of town to see them play.

      • The Raiders are not going to St Louis. Get it out of your heads!

    • Completely agree with bartleby on this. Davis’ primary requirement for a stadium is minimal work and funding on his part. St Louis likely fits this requirement better than any of the other options.

      While St Louis is a baseball town, because of revenue sharing the NFL can work in any city. Really how much more attractive is Oakland than St Louis? Both cities have already lost one franchise and are on the verge of losing a second.

      Also keep in mind that the Raiders need a home next year. I can’t see anyway the Raiders would agree to a long term lease at the Coliseum unless there is a clear path for the A’s to leave. That’s highly unlikely to happen in the next 6 months. The Raiders would probably agree to another year lease, but that’s a short term option. The Raiders need a temporary site ASAP and St Louis is probably the best one out there.

      I’m not saying that St Louis will happen because I agree it’s not Davis’ first choice but it’s got a lot more going for it than most of the other options.

  11. Just doing a little speculating, but it seems that what might happen, after all of this… is the A’s building a stadium on the Malibu lot with limited development near the stadium (something like the “ballpark village” in St. Louis or Xfintiy Live in Philadelphia) while the Raiders stay right where they are and bitch for several more years that no one will give them any money.

    It seems like the NFL would do just fine to have the Rams and Chargers in Inglewood and just wait to deal with the Raiders situation until they are forced to sell the team to make something happen.

    • @jeffrey-curious- based upon your speculation how would you envision LW paying for the $600M ballpark? Keep in mind there is a $1B arena about 12 miles away that will also be privately financed-

    • The same way he’d pay for it anywhere else. A combination of loans, equity (selling a portion of the team), naming rights and charter seat licenses. Possibly limited development between Coliseum BART and the new stadium that leaves most of the parking in tact (which is possible, look at the very first Coliseum City/Raiders only plan that had development along Hegenberger).

      It’s possible that they will need to leave parking for both fan accommodation AND as a revenue source to bond against.

      This would also require Oakland and Alameda County to do infrastructure work. Which is a whole other ball of wax that requires sussing out.

      We will see what the team plans in the near future. Until then, any speculation is not going to have a lot of details and it’s not really that pertinent to throw in “$1B arena” in the mix when there is a $1B football stadium less than 12 miles away from Diridon soaking up plenty of premium seat buyers in the South Bay (many of whom are still paying their seat license off).

      It’s going to be a challenge either way. It’s not nearly as insurmountable as a Raiders stadium is. It’s not nearly a slam dunk, either.

      • So you don’t believe commitment to continued revenue sharing is the golden ticket necessary to build in Oakland? I would want to see current statistics interns of corporate wealth for SF/OAK compared to Silicon Valley but I would still venture that the valley is much stronger still in this area and therefore more likely to support an unsubsidized ballpark-

      • I think the politicking within MLB is over and the A’s lost. Rev Share, SJ, etc. So it’s irrelevant. Perhaps the A’s can press the case that if MLB is going to define the entire market as 5 counties v. 2 for stadium purposes, they can’t then define the entire market as unified for Rev Share purposes. It’s either a shared market or it isn’t. But I don’t have any insight into that conversation, or even if it is a conversation.

        I’m also of the belief that Rev Sharing should be expanded, not contracted but clearly MLB is full of owners who don’t agree with that, so what does it matter what I think? The A’s should be eligible for Rev Share based on their revenues and the fact that they are an MLB team, regardless of what market they play in, just like the Brewers or the Mets, for that matter.

        I think that you are right, relative wealth in the South Bay is higher than it is in the East Bay (and probably SF too). But that doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty in the East Bay to make a new yard possible. It’s an argument I wish Oakland supporters would focus on rather than disparaging San Jose. The whole “SJ is soul less!” and “Oakland has as much wealth!” are both specious and losing arguments. Though, clearly, “MLB isn’t going to let the A’s move” is a winning one.

        Pride is irrespective of others. Pride in Oakland is not disparagement of SJ, as pride in SJ is not disparagement of Oakland. I take pride in the entire Bay Area. I’d love a regional solution where the A’s could put the stadium where ever they wished from Watsonville to Vacaville to Yountville to Guerneville to etc… But that’s not happening.

        Anyway, we will soon find out what is going to happen next. Hopefully it is a new A’s stadium breaking ground within the next 12-24 months in the Bay Area. If it is, it’s going to be in the Coliseum parking lot.

  12. PS- way to go Oakland landing Uber. That’s a game changer for Uptown and the culmination of some tremendous foresight by Jerry Brown.

  13. someobody better release some stadium drawings and plans pretty damn soon because this log jam of teams wanting stadiums with NOTHING happening is getting pretty damned tired right about now. Hurry up damnit.

    • Though, I’d add… we probably shouldn’t expect something for the A’s until the off season. T minus two weeks to full on bitching from me!!!!!!

      • Thought LW said he would wait for raiders to make a decision before moving forward? If that is still the case then it could be February before anything is released-

      • Lew Wolff has been working with 360/HOK on a site plan for about 8 months. Nothing like being proactive and kickstarting a vision that helps move the process along…

      • agree–but in that vision both he and MD agreed that there was no way that they would share the site. Raiders hanging out in the Coli and having the possibility of a remodel or striking a deal with Oakland at a future date to build on the site like you suggested impacts his vision. I dont see anything happening until Raiders future is decided. Moving forward and leaving the Raiders in play only gives up that more leverage.

      • We will see.

      • My take is that the 2-stadium deal was a non-starter only when Coliseum City was in play, since there simply wouldn’t have been enough room for all that development, plus 2 stadiums plus all the surface parking. Now that CC is gone, I don’t see why either owner would be adverse to having two stadiums as long as they have the parking with a little room for Wolff’s ballpark-related development. But, of course, I almost forgot who we’re dealing with!

      • sure- it’s a non-issue as long as there is public money to hel offset construction costs. There is no one who believes that the east bay/SF can absorb $2.6M of privately developed stadium/ballpark/arena costs without public funds. Amy Trask has noted this many times. Jeffrey’s point about the A’s trying to push forward to establish the vision and more importantly get shovels in the ground is right on mark- but hey- anyone who thinks that Raider fans are going to allow Schaaf to just push the Raiders aside will be in for a few surprises- especially if they play like they did last week- gonna be a fun winter but I will get that come next April we are no closer to breaking ground for a ballpark in Oakland than we are today.

    • @pjk If St. Louis doesn’t approve public financing this year it dramatically increases the chance the Rams will move to LA and force the Raiders to stay put, for now. But history shows markets that lose teams tend to experience remorse, and later approve public financing packages as good or better than the one they originally rejected.

      In other words, it may only delay the Raiders leaving Oakland. I’m not going to breathe easy until they’re locked into a long-term stadium deal somewhere in the State of CA.

      • Bartelby: If the NFL doesn’t approve the Rams move to Inglewood – Kroenke will very likely will pull what Al Davis did previously (in a very similiar situation as the Rams are now) and move the team to Inglewood anyways. Kroenke likely hasn’t started construction at the former Hollywood Park site only out of respect for the NFL process (Kroenke would appear very arrogant if he starting building the stadium even before the NFL approves the move)

        If the NFL were somehow to vote down the Rams to LA move, Kroenke will very likely begin building the $2 bil. Inglewood stadium and move the Rams there anyway. Kroenke evidently hasn’t returned any phone calls from St Louis officials about possibly staying there with a new tax-payer funded stadium – a new NFL stadium in St Louis will not at all likely prevent Kroenke from moving the Rams back to their former (real home) – LA.

      • I posted a long response to your question of me back up there but it disappeared. Anyway, there is a report the NFL commissioned on St. Louis. It was critical of the markets ability to fund PSLs required for a portion of the stadium costs because… St. Louis isn’t full of many people. Part of the study called out that 28% of current season ticket holders answered “Would you purchase PSL’s in the range fo $500-$40,000?” with “No.”

        It’s Sacramento from a market size perspective, and they have two other established sports teams that come first for premium seat dollars. It’s not as good of a market as you make it out to be, and the support for public funding of a new domed stadium is not nearly as high as people seem to think.

        Ultimately, we will see. But I expect that the Rams, Raiders, Chargers… etc. won’t be in St, Louis in two years or ever. St. Louis will probably be the stalking horse that gets Jacksonville to pony up big money for a new stadium, etc.

  14. Does anyone have a rendering of the stadium that the Coliseum showed to the NFL Expansion meeting in 1993? I remember it being on the Zhone Parcel and costing about the same as Mt. Davis did.

  15. @jeffreyaugust

    “Anyway, there is a report the NFL commissioned on St. Louis.”

    Do you have a link? I’d be interested to see it.

    “It was critical of the markets ability to fund PSLs required for a portion of the stadium costs because… St. Louis isn’t full of many people.”

    St. Louis is the 19th largest U.S. metropolitan statistical area, with 2.8 million people. It is larger than Baltimore and Denver and substantially larger than Charlotte, Pittsburgh, Sacramento (#27, 2.2 million people), and a number of other NFL cities.. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Metropolitan_Statistical_Areas

    St. Louis also has a sizable corporate base, especially for a city its size. Seven Fortune 500 companies are headquartered in St. Louis, two more in its immediate suburbs, one more about 90 minutes away. It also still has sizable remaining operations for major companies formerly headquartered in St. Louis, since acquired by other companies (McDonnell Douglas (now Boeing), Anheuser Busch (now InBev), TWA (now American Airlines).

    “Part of the study called out that 28% of current season ticket holders answered “Would you purchase PSL’s in the range fo $500-$40,000?” with “No.””

    The flip side of this is that presumably 72% of current season ticket holders answered “Yes.” I think I’d draw exactly the opposite conclusion from this statistic that you did.

    “It’s Sacramento from a market size perspective,”

    As noted above, its not. It’s more comparable to Denver, but with fewer sports teams to support.

    “…and they have two other established sports teams that come first for premium seat dollars.”

    “…It’s not as good of a market as you make it out to be,”

    Contrary to the made up statistics duffer keeps posting, St. Louis has had good attendance for the Rams in spite of losing teams, is bigger than about half the other NFL markets, has an above average corporate base, and in the past has shown a willingness to spend tax money to build stadia. I maintain it is an excellent NFL market.

    “…and the support for public funding of a new domed stadium is not nearly as high as people seem to think.”

    We shall see. If St. Louis does not commit public funds to a stadium, it will certainly affect my probability projections for the various possible outcomes. But again, this may only be a temporary delay, because in the past cities that lose teams have often had remorse and ponied up big time just a few years down the road.

    “St. Louis will probably be the stalking horse that gets Jacksonville to pony up big money for a new stadium, etc.”

    St. Louis might become a stalking horse for certain cities, but I doubt Jacksonville will be one of them. For one thing, I don’t think Jacksonville has the resources to play anymore than Oakland does. For another thing, if there ever was such a competition I think St. Louis would be the NFL’s preferred outcome, not Jacksonville.

    • I keep trying to post responses and they disappear when I hit submit.

      Turf Show Times has a copy of the study. Search google for “nfl st louis premium ticket study.” that’s how I originally found it.

      Also, St. Louis is a smaller media market than Sacramento (STL 21, Sac 20). There are more ways to look at market size than census data.

      • @jeffreyaugust “St. Louis is a smaller media market than Sacramento (STL 21, Sac 20)”

        So what? NFL TV revenue is shared. Given the NFL’s economic system, I’d say population, corporate base, and willingness to spend public money on stadia are all far more important for locating an NFL team. STL kills Sacramento in those categories (and many other solid NFL markets).

      • I completely disagree. And I am pretty sure you will be proven wrong by reality. St. Louis is an overrated market that will lose an NFL team, and not have another one.

      • @jeffreyaugust “I completely disagree.”

        You’re more than entitled to disagree, you just haven’t provided a coherent explanation of why you do. I’ve pointed out that media revenue is shared equally among NFL teams (which is the only reason a city like Jacksonville has a team in the first place). Why then do you feel it has any relevance to comparing Sacramento and St. Louis as locations for NFL teams? I’m genuinely curious.

        “And I am pretty sure you will be proven wrong by reality. St. Louis is an overrated market that will lose an NFL team, and not have another one.”

        This is just an ipse dixit statement. I’ve pointed out that the St. Louis MSA has more than adequate population (greater than 11 other NFL teams), a history of strong support for losing teams, a corporate base that would be the envy of several larger MSAs, and a history of throwing large sums of money at the NFL. You haven’t rebutted any of these points or provided a cogent explanation of why they are not relevant. Several NFL owners have come out and said that if St. Louis plays ball, it should have another team. What insight do you have that they don’t?

      • keep typing paragraphs about it, it’s getting really old. It’s not up to me to convince you of anything, two people can look at the same data and draw different conclusions.

        My point about media market is that what I said is true St. Louis and Sacramento are similar sized markets from a population perspective. That’s it.

        The ONLY thing St. Louis has going for it is potential public funding, without it… It’s not even a blip on the radar.

      • @jeffreyaugust

        “keep typing paragraphs about it, it’s getting really old.”

        See, I thought we were having a conversation, so was trying to provide – y’know – actual facts and logic in support of my opinions (something I consider a sign of respect for the person I’m dialoging with). But if I’m boring you so much, you can extricate yourself from the conversation by simply not responding.

        “It’s not up to me to convince you of anything,”

        Then either stop trying to do so or provide more support for your views than simply saying “you’re wrong.” I can get my fill of conclusory, confrontational statements elsewhere on the internet. (Your comment “I just visited St. Louis and I can tell it will never have another NFL team” sounded an awful lot like “I have a deep understanding of Russia because I can see it from my house”).

        “two people can look at the same data and draw different conclusions.”

        They certainly can. And based on your past postings, I had enough respect for your views that I was genuinely curious about why you are drawing different conclusions in this case. But if you don’t intend to try to explain and support your opinions coherently (as it appears you don’t), we probably are just wasting each other’s time.

        “My point about media market is that what I said is true St. Louis and Sacramento are similar sized markets from a population perspective. That’s it.”

        In my understanding, they are not similar sized markets from a population perspective because Sacramento’s TV market covers an enormous geographic area that is not realistically the target market for NFL season ticket holders while the St. Louis TV market is mostly concentrated in the immediate vicinity of St. Louis and its suburbs. Therefore, MSA seems a more meaningful metric. However, I am admittedly not an expert on TV markets and have not bothered to research this point because you have not made it obvious why it’s even relevant. I you have different information about this you want to share, I would certainly give it due consideration.

        “The ONLY thing St. Louis has going for it is potential public funding, without it… It’s not even a blip on the radar.”

        Because of the NFL’s economic system, NFL teams can get by in just about any mid-size or larger American city. So public funding for stadiums generally is the sine quo non for attracting and retaining an NFL team. (The fact Jacksonville has had a team and Los Angeles not for more than 20 years is persuasive evidence of this).

        But it’s certainly not the only thing St. Louis has going for it. Most objective, reasonable observers would agree that population size (STL is bigger than almost any other metro that doesn’t have a team beside Los Angeles), a history of strong support for the NFL despite miserable performance on the field and sizable corporate base (at least 10x Sacramento) are all important factors. (The corporate base part is one big reason St. Louis is likely to retain or regain an NFL team down the road while Sacramento will never have one). Your casual dismissal of these considerations hurts your credibility.

  16. @jeffreyaugust “…and they have two other established sports teams that come first for premium seat dollars.”

    I’ll give you the Cards; not so sure about the Blues.

  17. @duffer “Bartelby: If the NFL doesn’t approve the Rams move to Inglewood – Kroenke will very likely will pull what Al Davis did previously (in a very similiar situation as the Rams are now) and move the team to Inglewood anyways.”

    The effect of NFL approval on Kroenke’s decision making is a different issue than the effect of St. Louis’ approval of a stadium plan. While he hasn’t shown a lot of interest so far, there’s still the chance that if STL offers up a plan that’s rich enough Kroenke would decide to stay. I don’t particularly see why an NFL stadium is essential to his Inglewood project, so possibly he could take the money in STL and still make a bundle in LA.

    I doubt Kroenke would go ahead and start building in LA without the NFL’s approval. Because of the investment involved, it would be a much bigger gamble than Al was taking when he left for an existing building in LA. Whether or not Kroenke needs the NFL’s help for financing, he’s going to want its support to make his project a success. And if he didn’t have the NFL’s approval, it would presumably be because the NFL had approved a competing 2-team plan just down the road – making the whole venture far riskier.

    • The other thing about NFL approval is the Super Bowl. I’m sure Kroenke is going to want in on that, and going around the NFL might make that dicey — even considering how much the NFL wants to hold Super Bowls in Southern California.

    • The Rams and Raiders are the preferred teams with the Los Angeles fan base – the Chargers aren’t even close. Also, San Diego city officials have devised what appears to be a solid plan to keep the team there (without extra taxpayer dollars) The Chargers attendance is easily better than either the Raiders or Rams. It would be more difficult for the NFL to justify approving the Chargers move to Carson over the Ram’s Inglewood plan.

      • not so sure about that. the chargers have had non sell out problems for years just like raiders did.

      • @cisco007: San Diego’s attendance has not been great. Theirs and the Coliseum are relics though, St. Louis plays at a 22 yr old domed stadium. Some St Louis fans complain that it is a bland, ugly stadium. However plenty of other NFL teams have used, or are currently using uglier, more bland stadiums than the Rams do – and still draw much better attendance, – St Louis has clearly demonstrated that it can’t support the NFL.

        Also there is evidently much opposition from politicians over there that do not want to use public tax dollars to pay for another stadium again (given the Rams debacle – who could blame them) It appears doubtful that St Louis officials will be able to get public tax dollar support for another NFL stadium.

    • @duffer “San Diego’s attendance has not been great. Theirs and the Coliseum are relics though, St. Louis plays at a 22 yr old domed stadium. Some St Louis fans complain that it is a bland, ugly stadium.”

      And boy, is it ever.

      “However plenty of other NFL teams have used, or are currently using uglier, more bland stadiums than the Rams do – and still draw much better attendance,”

      Name them. I’ve been to games in 27 of the 30 current NFL stadia (remember, the New York teams share and Minnesota doesn’t really have one yet), and the only current ones I think are even arguably as bland and/or ugly are Atlanta, New Orleans, San Diego, Buffalo and Oakland (and I’d give San Diego, Buffalo and Oakland the edge for being outdoors and having real grass). And none of those cities has consistently supported losing teams significantly better than St. Louis.

      “– St Louis has clearly demonstrated that it can’t support the NFL.”

      Again, simply not true. The Rams sold out every game in St. Louis from 1995 to 2007, despite only four winning teams during that period (and indeed during their entire history in St. Louis) and an excruciating 3-13 record in 2007. They averaged almost 58,000 from 2007 through 2011 while enduring the worst five year won-loss record in NFL history (posting records of 3-13, 2-14, 1-15, 7-9 and 2-14 for an average of 3 wins per year). Their lowest annual attendance in their entire history in St. Louis (just under 53,000 in 2010) would be a near-capacity crowd at O.co in its current configuration. http://espn.go.com/nfl/attendance/_/year/2014
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_St._Louis_Rams_seasons

      Look, when a team has a losing streak that bad for that long, it’s going to impact their attendance figures. This is true in pretty much every city, in every sport. The Raiders DREAM of having attendance like the Rams have had in St. Louis.

      “Also there is evidently much opposition from politicians over there that do not want to use public tax dollars to pay for another stadium again (given the Rams debacle – who could blame them) It appears doubtful that St Louis officials will be able to get public tax dollar support for another NFL stadium.”

      There is some opposition, as there always is. We’ll see how it shakes out. Unless St. Louis ponies up for a new stadium, it probably won’t keep the Rams or attract a new NFL team. But that’s true of almost every market. It has nothing to do with St. Louis’ supposed inability to support an NFL franchise.

      • People forget that attendance issues usually have a direct correlation to poor performace by a team. When a team is entertaining and does well….sellouts occur. When a team is bad for quite sometime. Sellouts are hard to come by on a consistent basis that is.

      • But, in the NFL study on St, Louis, this is specifically called out as an issue.

  18. …so are we going to get something like this released after the season for a possible a’s baseball park concept at the coliseum site?

    • No. we will get one for the Raiders!

      • a’s brass already has experience having released three different renderings for three different locations.

        coliseum north

        cisco field in fremont

        cisco field in sj

        guessing they already have pics of whatever plan they may have for the coliseum area if that’s eventually where they have to build.

      • That ship has sailed. No Raiders stadium unless the NFL and the Raiders want to pay for the whole thing…

      • Yeah, the Raiders will finally make there very first proposal for a stadium at the Coliseum because you want them to. I am not holding my breath.

  19. Please forgive my ignorance here, but has there ever been an initiative in the city of Oakland asking local residents if they were willing to pay a tax increase or to approve the sale of city bonds to help build a new football stadium? If so, when was it/were they and what was/were the result(s)?

  20. “Gentrification” is just part of the process to revitilizing certain parts of a city. if no ballparks are built on the existing Coli Site than a mall should go up with an IMAX movie theater and restaurants, bars, lounges.

  21. If all else fails….remodel and renovate the existing Coliseum for the Raiders.

  22. By all rights….SCOTUS should take the case. Baseballs ATE is archaic and really does need to be abolished.

  23. If Supreme Court doesn’t take the case, perhaps San Jose needs to move quickly to auction off the ballpark property to the highest bidder, for whatever purpose the bidder desires. MLB has treated San Jose very shabbily and perhaps it might be good to teach MLB a lesson and remove San Jose as a ballpark option altogether. Give all the leverage to Oakland in ballpark talks (ie, MLB will either have to continue permanent revenue-sharing to get a new Oakland ballpark or think about moving the team. But nobody seems to have any other markets available that could take a team anytime soon.) If MLB doesn’t want to be in the nation’s 10th-largest city and an ideal one for MLB, then maybe it’s time for San Jose to stop trying to, so to speak, get a hot date with MLB and forget about it. You can lead a horse to water…

    • So true. MLB needs San Jose way more than San Jose needs MLB. SCCO already has NFL, NHL, and MLS. MLB, in it’s stupidity and arrogance, seriously missed the boat. They’re leaving tons of money on the table, but their precious gints are a money maker, so they can’t see the forest through the trees.

  24. It’s my belief that a large contingent of “The Lodge” wants the A’s to just go away. Many of them hate Billy Beane, because he continually shows them up with his “make the most of what little you have” success, and the owners that pay into revenue sharing hate it, and many of them think the BA is a one team market. Sad but true.

    But alas, they’re all too cheap to pay off the franchise fee to Wolff/Fisher if the A’s are folded, and they’re too afraid of the ensuing lawsuit from the Player’s union. In lieu of what they desire, their preference is to make the A’s continue to flounder in the Coli, forcing them to be a feeder team, and making the Giants a continued financial juggernaut.

    And if they really wanted the A’s to get a new stadium in Oakland (keeping the T-rights in tact), the worse thing to do was to keep San Jose out of the discussion, because it removed all leverage the A’s could have in negotiating with Oakland.

    Just think about it. If the Lodge was truly interested in allowing the A’s to flourish and get a new ballpark, it would have happened by now. Everything that Selig, and now Manfred, has done has been nothing but lip service and going through the motions, to try to make it look like they want to the A’s to get a new ballpark. The BRC was a farce that did absolutely nothing, and Selig could always just say “It’s complicated”. Anytime someone says “It’s complicated”, it’s not, and they’re hiding something really bad.

    I hate to say it, but this is what I have to believe until MLB “shows us the money”.

    And until MLB does something actually substantive that moves things forward for the A’s to get a new ballpark and allows them to compete on equal footing, MLB is a non-existent entity to me.

    What MLB has done to the A’s is nothing short of despicable, and unprecedented throughout any league throughout the world.

    I love the A’s, and will follow them here and there, but luckily there is some much more in the sports world. 🙂 I’m a huge soccer guy, I have Republic FC here in Sac, EPL and the Bundesliga and MLS and the Champions league all TV. I have the Sac Kings, 49ers, and on and on. MLB is stupid in alienating a fanbase of a great and historic franchise. There is lots of competition out there.

    Sorry for the negativity, but FUCK MLB.

    • How true, the way MLB is favoring the stupid Giants franchise over the A’s is disgusting. Also there are alternatives to MLB (I personally prefer watching the WTA tennis babes playing than Buster Posey adjusting his jockstrap anytime)

      • Since you mention Tennis – that’s a good alternative. And that reminds me of another alternative.

        For me, baseball is a slow, yet very fascinating high strategy, high skill game that involves “the art of hitting” or “the art of hitting”, etc.

        And since I’m watching much less baseball due to the complete idiocy of MLB screwing the A’s, I’ve been watching more golf (and recently playing it more). It has the same “zen-like” high skill, high strategy, “art-of” qualities that baseball, only without a dimwit “Lodge” to screw everything up. Plus we have guys like Speith, McIlroy, Day, and Fowler to follow these days (who needs Tiger?).

        So, once again, FUCK MLB. 🙂

        Sorry, it feels good to say that! 😀

    • I fear that everything Jeff-athletic said may be 100% accurate.

      • Likely not a majority of MLB owners side with the Giants, however evidently the Giants have gathered enough support to block the move. MLB, even Selig, blames the Giants only though – no other MLB owners have publicly supported the Giants.

  25. Yep, there’s a strong enough contingent in the Lodge siding with the Gints.
    However, I don’t think Selig ever cared one way or the other. He just wanted his frat buddy Wolff to be a compliant caretaker, who could make some personal money in the long run on increased franchise value. This, since the Lodge couldn’t just fold the A’s (too expensive), or move them out of BA (no better alternatives available).

    • @jeff-athletic: one would think that moving the A’s further from SF would serve both franchises (and MLB’s) interests. The goofy Giants organization, and MLB, evidently don’t believe that though, a new A’s stadium in Oakland will do more damage to the Giants fanbase than if the A’s move to SJ – go figure.

  26. I say SCOTUS has to take the case, they cannot let the NFL, NHL, and NBA play on uneven playing field when compared to MLB.

    What makes MLB so special? Nothing, the ATE was granted in 1922, the other leagues have failed time and time again with SCOTUS to get one granted.

    American Needle lost on every level to the NFL much like San Jose just did. The NFL got greedy and went to SCOTUS going for a de facto ATE. What happened? They got slaughtered in a big way, not one justice sided with the NFL despite every lower judge doing the opposite. What does that say?

    If SCOTUS rejects San Jose then they are saying MLB is above the other leagues and that justice is not blind but in fact arbitrary and that the ATE given in 1922 holds because baseball is still a “game” when we all know it is a 100% a business.

    The lower courts let this go because but let SJ appeal higher and higher because they knew on some level SJ has a case but SCOTUS has to judge it.

    As for the NFL and LA,

    Not one team has the votes for a move. The NFL does not want the Chargers/Raiders to share, although they want the Chargers in LA because of proximity.

    But then they feel St. Louis is stepping up their game with public money. Even though the Rams have by far a better proposal, site, and development ready to go.

    The rich, old owners have a long way to go before anyone sees LA.

    All three teams will be staying put for 2016

    • The Rams are the likely candidate for 2016, St Louis evidently won’t be able to publicly fund a new NFL stadium (they shouldn’t anyhow, their publicly financed 22 year old Edward Jones dome stadium has been a complete flop). Kroenke has the funds to build a $2 bil. stadium in Inglewood (why the NFL would object to that would be bizzare) The Rams have been drawing terribly in St Louis. Besides the Rams for all practical purposes, historically have an LA team (they originally formed as the Cleveland Rams and played there for two years before moving to LA in the ’40s) and have a long history in Los Angeles for 50 years since then.

      It would interesting to see the content of that letter MLB sent to the SCOTUS in July of 2015, urging the SC to reject overturning the MLB ATE. How MLB could anyway justify that obsolete legislation would be impossible – it is a completly obsolete, silly law that should be overturned It was originally formed because the SC at that time, believed that MLB was not a business (not an an intrastate business) and therefore should be subject to business anti-trust laws. Considering that even Manfred recently commented that “MLB is a growth business” really makes justifying the MLB ATE under any circumstances a farce.

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