With antitrust suit dismissed, what next for San Jose’s quest for the A’s?

U.S. District Judge Ronald Whyte made his ruling in San Jose’s antitrust suit against Major League Baseball over moving the Oakland A’s late on Friday, and it wasn’t a complete win for either side: Whyte dismissed the city’s antitrust charges, on the grounds that baseball’s longstanding Supreme Court-issued antitrust exemption trumps any challenges, but allowed another portion of the suit, accusing MLB of interfering with San Jose’s sale of a option on stadium land to A’s owner Lew Wolff.

San Jose attorney Phil Gregory called this a “big victory,” but it’s hard to ignore the fact that the antitrust piece is the hammer that MLB was deathly afraid of. As NBC Sports’ Craig Calcaterra (who’d previously pooh-poohed the San Jose suit as a load of p.r.) points out, the threat posed by the tortious interference claim is pretty limited:

The A’s paid San Jose $50,000 for the option. It expires soon. If they want to keep the option open for another year it’s another $25,000. If the A’s owners were to buy the land, they can do it for between $6 million and $7 million. Nothing in the option agreement, however, promises that the A’s will actually move. It doesn’t even promise that they’ll buy the land. Just that they have the option to do so.

Of course, since the antitrust exemption is in place, the A’s can’t just decide to move to San Jose. Therefore, unless they are the biggest idiots on the planet, they will not agree to commit to the $7 million land deal. Put differently, no A’s witness will get on a stand and say “yes, we totally want to give San Jose $7 million right now but MLB won’t let us!”  As such, the value of the contract that San Jose now has to prove MLB interfered with is $75,000. That’s it.

MLB can still be forced to go through the discovery phase, which could include embarrassing subpoenas about Bud Selig’s “blue ribbon commission” and its non-decision-making process, though as FanGraphs’ Wendy Thurm points out, the judge could still allow limits on that as well. But that’s a threat way less scary to MLB than the one of potentially having its antitrust exemption mucked with, and while San Jose could still appeal the rejection of the antitrust claim, that might have to wait until the tortious interference piece is resolved — and even then is a longshot to be approved.

The best-case scenario for San Jose’s A’s-coveting officials here, really, is that MLB decides that the gnat of a suit remaining is annoying enough that Bud Selig calls over to the San Francisco Giants executive offices and says, “Hey, can you at least put a price on what you want for the territorial rights to San Jose, so we can tell this judge we’re not being obstinate?” Though then if the Giants do so, there’s still a fair chance that A’s owner Lew Wolff decides he can’t or won’t pay it, at which point San Jose is suddenly looking at having to prove that MLB is harming them by interfering with a piddly-ass land sale option in order to prevent a franchise relocation that the team’s owner himself is choosing not to pursue. “You’re using your Supreme Court-affirmed rights to control franchise movement to make it too expensive for a team to move to our city” may be a decent argument in the court of public opinion, but unfortunately for San Jose A’s boosters, that court isn’t the one that has jurisdiction here.


32 comments on “With antitrust suit dismissed, what next for San Jose’s quest for the A’s?

  1. @Neil–couple points- Wendy Thurms analysis also indicated that it will be interesting to see how broad the judge is in terms of discovery. From her perspective the ruling screams for a settlement and if this is the case then the judge could give the CSJ plenty of latitude in discovery to make mlb uncomfortable enough to figure out a solution.

    Second- assuming the legal avenue’s fail the bottom line is still the same. Oakland cannot contribute to building a new ballpark and no owner is going to build one out of the goodness of their heart in the city of Oakland. Either mlb levels the 2 team playing field in the bay area or LW continues to get welfare from his partners and will remain in the Coli until he is forced out.

  2. I happen to be sympathetic towards the A’s, but if I am the Giants, the number would be nothing less than $50m a year for 20 years… Yes $1b (which I know I am not getting). Why? If I have a way to not only keep San Jose, but possibly see the A’s leave town and capture the casual A’s fan in Oakland itself, and since the only thing I might lose is some good will, why not try it? This is particularly true since the A’s need a place to play in 2014 (the lease being up), and since time is on my side, why not wait to see if the Raiders remain at the Coliseum? If that happens, soon enough, the A’s get will kicked out, and I can accomplish that long-term goal. If not, I can still keep them pinned down at the Coliseum until conditions get worse (and they will), or they “Cry Uncle” and leave.

  3. 1) Yeah, clearly the judge would love a settlement. But I really doubt this is going to be enough discomfort to push MLB into okaying a move unless it’s what they already want to do.

    2) Sure, but that’s not necessarily a bad short-term solution from MLB’s perspective. Getting the A’s off revenue-sharing would only mean moving some other team on, after all (that’s how the system works). And perpetuating the status quo, neither approving nor disapproving a move, means more chances to try to shake down either Oakland or some other city (East Bay or elsewhere) for stadium money. Weighed against the big-market teams’ fear of setting a precedent for incursions into their market, plus other AL teams not really wanting to see what Billy Beane could do with a bigger budget, I think you can see why nobody’s pushing really hard for this to be resolved anytime soon.

  4. Also, can someone point me to any evidence that the A’s could be “kicked out” of the Coliseum? I know this is what the Raiders are asking for, but it seems so monumentally dumb that I can’t imagine even Oakland officials would do it.

  5. Neil: There is no evidence and likely no chance the A’s could be “kicked out”. Wolff has already said he will be seeking a new lease AT the coliseum (something the city will almost certainly grant him, though I’d play harder ball than they are likely to do on that front), so I don’t see where this immediate pressure to magically wish a ballpark into being comes from (other than fans positively rabid at the notion that San Jose might get some team other than the Sharks/Quakes to cheer for, of course).

    There’s only one thing in the article I disagree with… Lew Wolff being “unable” to pay for a San Jose move. I don’t think Wolff intends to pay at all – even if MLB forces a number out of Baer.

    He’ll turn to his dutiful servants on San Jose council and say “Larry wants $450m. Do you want baseball in San Jose or not?”. This is professional sports, after all…

  6. John, 1: If the Raiders stay at the Coliseum site, there are two scenarios. A: The Raiders rent at Santa Rosa for several years until the New facility is built? B: They remain there while work is being completed. Neither scenario involves five years for the A’s (let alone 6-8 as recommended by Rebecca Kaplan). 2: The Raiders do not stay, and the A’s remain at the Coliseum, as conditions get worse, and worse, the Giants strategy of keeping them pinned down at the Coliseum for a Decade remains (which I do not see happening, but is always possible), or until they get to San Jose, get an upgraded (or new) facility in Oakland, or move out of the Bay Area. Three of those four scenarios work quite nicely for San Francisco.

  7. It’s good to look “what if” the Raiders’ get a new stadium options. If the Raiders’ new stadium is in the parking lot of the Coliseum, then it would seem the following would happen:

    1) The Raiders could remain in the Coliseum until their new 55,000+ seat stadium is ready.
    2) The A’s and Raiders’ lose parking spots
    3) Some entity has to pay for maintenance on two large stadiums, including new scoreboard demands every 10 years or so.
    4) The Coliseum and the new football stadium compete for non-football events
    5) The A’s stare at Mount Davis and wonder why it is there in a non-football stadium
    6) The A’s continue to have a home – even if it is a decaying home. “It’s Our Dump” becomes the team slogan in another 10 years. Basically the A’s go into Chargers-mode.
    7) Both teams manage their own stadiums.

    The Raiders’ build on top of the Coliseum:
    1) The Raiders’ have to find a place to play during construction – They could share Santa Clara *or* it seems Candlestick will be available (not the first time the Raiders’ took over an old stadium from another team) or even AT&T Park which hosts football games – although it would be tough to get 55k into AT&T Park.
    2) The A’s have to find some place to play. Even if the A’s get a second new stadium in Oakland, they still have to find a place to play for 3-4 years before a new ballpark could be built.
    3) Oakland loses a tenant.
    4) The new football stadium does not have competition in Oakland for non-football events.
    5) Same number of parking spots remain

    If the Raiders leave Oakland, then from an A’s standpoint
    1) They get the Coliseum to themselves and perhaps increase the amount of pressure they can put on Oakland officials since they might be the only game in town.
    2) More money is available for an A’s ballpark in Oakland if anyone is listening.
    3) Easiest situation for MLB to do nothing

    Really the only time MLB gets forced into doing something is if the Raiders get approval for a new stadium on top of the Coliseum. That forces decisions since the A’s have to have some place to play.

  8. David:

    If the Raiders get “immediate” approval to do something (and even they aren’t saying exactly what) at the coliseum site, there would be an issue. But there has been no suggestion (other than from Davis – who is simply trying to use the non-existent expedience as a lever) that this is imminent.

    You may be right about the eight years Kaplan suggests, but I’m not so sure about the five. Wolff will work on a new lease with the coliseum 0 he has already said as much. Whether that is a 3-5yr extension while MLB and the city grind on him some more to actually come to the table and work on Oakland options (which he hasn’t exhausted, despite what some like to claim…), or while MLB and Wolff make arrangements for him to move elsewhere (and perhaps not within the region) I don’t know. But it is not in any way beyond the realm of possibility that the A’s could be playing 2016 LDS games at the coliseum. I’m sure Davis will be displeased to hear it, but the wrecking ball isn’t coming in the day after the A’s season ends in 2014.

    I agree with those who’ve said Oakland has done damage to the A’s by trying to help the Raiders. But the city is also aware that keeping the Raiders will cost a great deal more than keeping the A’s. The A’s play more games and attract about 3x the # of paying customers over the course of a year… all of which generates significant additional revenues for city coffers.

    To your first post, I would point out only that the A’s are not “pinned down” by the Giants in the coliseum. The city has promoted several sites (some of which MLB seem comfortable with as options) for a new ballpark. The city also has investors kicking around their basin development plans… it remains to be seen whether they are actually willing to spend what initial comments have suggested they will, and whether or not Quan’s curious ideas about who should call the shots when someone else is paying the bills will fly with these new folk. However, they do have some history with both development and sports franchises/facilities.

    The point is, Wolff has “in Oakland” options. Rather than explore those through actual negotiation, he has chosen to turn up his nose at any Oakland option. He has done this because he thinks he can get the franchise to another location without paying. If he has to pay to get to San Jose (or NY for that matter), will he still be interested?

    In effect, he’s using the present situation (which as I said is simply the illusion of having “no place to play”) to bully MLB the way some teams (the Raiduhs being just one) bully their host cities. I don’t think he’s going to be successful. It’s hard to bullshit the guys who wrote the book on that particular subject.

  9. @John Bladen:

    “It’s hard to bullshit the guys who wrote the book on that particular subject.”

    I like this point, but I want to be sure I understand it. Are you saying that it’ll be hard for the MLB to bullshit the NFL over the issue of ‘their’ team bullying its host city to get a better deal because the NFL is the uncontested master at this?

  10. John, while Wolff and the A’s can take 3-5 years at the Coliseum, there must be an end game, of a new Stadium. It could be in San Jose, Oakland or out of the Bay Area, but it cannot be waiting on the Election of Mayor Kaplan in 2018 for the hope of something better. If they cannot get that guarantee, moving now might be the way to go? Do I think that happens? No but the longer Selig, Quan and Kaplan play games ( like the Kaplan ” Proposal” ), the more that possibility becomes a reality. The Raiders are in a better position, because LA and Santa Rosa are real options, while waiting on a new Stadium either in Oakland, the suburbs, or LA. Quan could actually screw things up so the City loses the A’s, Raiders and Warriors.

  11. “there must be an end game, of a new Stadium”

    I don’t see that. Oakland may not be the best market in the world, but it’s still better than any of the other available ones. (Except maybe Montréal, and it has its own concrete donut issues.) If Oakland doesn’t provide money for a new stadium, and San Jose continues to be blocked, I think Wolff’s only real options are to stay put or to sell to someone else who will.

    Which isn’t the worst thing for Wolff, really, since he’s making money right now. (Yes, thanks to revenue sharing, but that money’s green like any other.) You can argue about whether it’s the scenario that’s best for baseball, but it’s certainly a plausible scenario — as it should be, since we’ve been living in it for several years now.

  12. The real problem for the A’s moving outside of the Bay Area is that no other city seems to be even hinting that they want an MLB team. Sure Las Vegas had lots of words a few years ago but that disappeared and MLB would never (permanently) put a MLB team in LV. Montreal has a former player who claims he could put a group together but they would still have the same ownership problem that doomed the Expos. Northern Virginia disappeared when DC got the Nats.

    As we heard about year or so ago, Sacramento made a few hints but they are busy with the NBA right now. San Antonio is blocked by both the Rangers and the Astros.

    So, short of going to Hawaii or London, I’m not sure there is a market calling for the A’s. It was much easier when AL teams could “invade” NL teams’ territories without any problems.

    Which brings up a question I’ll have to research. Did the Yankees get any compensation when the Mets were formed and moved into NY? Did the Dodgers get anything when the Angels started playing in Wrigley (LA version, of course)?

  13. ” 1960
    The NL owners voted to expand to New York and Houston for 1962. The AL owners then voted to transfer the Senators to Minnesota, replace them with a new Senators expansion club in Washington, and put a second expansion franchise in Los Angeles for 1961.

    “But when the Dodgers objected to the invasion of their territory, they and the AL owners returned to the earlier proposal of two nine-team leagues with Interleague Play. The rest of the NL rejected the plan and the Dodgers received $550,000 for indemnification. The Angels joined the AL as an expansion team and the Interleague Play idea was tabled.”

    http://mlb.mlb.com/news/print.jsp?ymd=20060514&content_id=1453643&vkey=news_mlb&c_id=mlb&fext=.jsp

  14. A quick Googling doesn’t turn up anything about the Mets paying the Yankees, but given that the creation of the Mets was an emergency measure to ward off the creation of a third major league, and the Yankees had shared NYC with two NL teams until a few years previously, my guess is they may have figured whatever, an expansion team in Queens wasn’t going to be much of a threat to their profits.

  15. Very interesting. Thank you. And, of course, the Dodgers also got rent for a few seasons for the Angels in Dodger Stadium (or Chavez Ravine as the Angels referred to it).

  16. Carl:

    Sorry for not being clear on that particular point. What I intended to say was that Lew Wolff is trying to bully MLB the way MLB (and other leagues) bully their host cities – by suggesting he will have “nowhere” to play. At present, that is not the case. And I don’t think his fraternity brother in the commissioners office will care for that approach (because MLB has been so good at doing this to others).

    But your version (the NFL getting mad at someone horning in on what they think of as their action) is certainly plausible too…

  17. David: I’m not going to argue that Quan couldn’t screw it up that badly, because it is possible (when they announced the new financial backers/investors for their development, she actually said “these guys have the money to build the things we want the way we want”… Oy.)

    However, do you really think that playing in LA or at the 9ers new stadium (which I’m assuming is the other option you suggested) are viable options for the Raiders?

    I just don’t see the NFL approving a move back to LA to play in either of the venues available (it’s a step back, and they pretty clearly think they can get $1.5bn for an expansion franchise there if they are patient). In addition, as I understand it, USC now has considerably more control over what “else” goes on at the Coliseum than was the case when the Raiders played there. If the move involves the AEG stadium plan, Davis would have to be willing to part with at least 40% of his team (and probably more, Mr. Anschutz is a fan of partnerships, but it seems only when his group controls the majority of the shares) to get there. I don’t think that is likely.

    As for sharing with the 49ers, it is possible. I just don’t see it as a long term measure. I could see them playing there for 2yrs while their facility is being built (wherever it will be), for example. But moving their absent a stadium agreement seems like risking that being the permanent home to me… once you’ve moved, it is difficult for me to see Oakland opening the coffers to get the team back.

  18. Neil: As I recall, NY was promised a new national league team more or less as the others left town… It may be that MLB made it clear to the Yankees (and to the rest of baseball, more to the point) that their territory would not expand to include Long Island when the Dodgers left. They were getting “all” of Manhattan to themselves courtesy of the Giants after all.

    Just going from memory, but I can’t recall ever reading anything about the Mets paying indemnification to the Yankees. I know the owners paid an expansion fee… but as far as I know that was split among all teams, not handed over to the Yankees.

  19. Neil, I know you believe in fairness, so how fair would it be for 2020 to come, and the A’s and the Raiders to be sitting in the Coliseum ( as is), when every other Professional Sports team ( except the Tampa Bay Rays), have a new or upgraded facility? The idea of the Rams and ( in particular) the Division Rival Chargers sitting in Farmers Field ( or somewhere in LA), making boat loads of money ( not to mention the 49ers doing the same in Santa Rosa)) has to be a real fear of Mark Davis, and one he will not allow to happen. The A’s situation is far worse, but it too cannot allow to remain as is, until engineers decide the Coliseum is structurally unsafe, and they have no where to play. Which coupled with the end of the lease, and the need to make the 2014 NFL Schedule ( will Santa Rosa be needed for one team or two?) is why something will come to a conclusion ( at least with the Raiders), before Christmas.

  20. If the A’s and Raiders owners think it’s unfair to play in the Coliseum, they are more than welcome to build new stadiums.

    If the A’s and Raiders owners think it would cost more money than it’s worth to build new stadium with their own money, I don’t exactly see how that’s Oakland’s problem. “All the other kids are doing it” isn’t really good public policy.

    And “structurally unsafe”? Where did *that* come from? The Transamerica Tower is almost as old — are we going to worry about that falling down next?

  21. “…when every other Professional Sports team ( except the Tampa Bay Rays), have a new or upgraded facility?”

    First of all, David, fairness doesn’t enter into the discussion in business. If you don’t believe me, visit a dealership and ask them to give you a new Cadillac because ‘all your friends’ have one. It doesn’t work.

    Secondly, it is untrue to suggest that “every” other professional sports team has a new or renovated stadium.

    Even if we confine the discussion to the NFL alone (which has, I think you’ll agree, more than it’s share of new and heavily renovated stadia), there are no less than 8 NFL teams playing in stadia built or renovated before the Coliseum was renovated in 1996, and another 7 that were either built or heavily renovated within 5 years of the Raiders last renovation (not including the 49ers, who are moving next year). And yes, after reviewing all the stadium data I was surprised to learn it was that many. If you’d asked me before I did this when “team X” had a new stadium, I would invariably have said “four or five years ago”. But it’s just not true…

    So no, the Raiders won’t be “the only” ones.

    But having the general public (and Oakland authorities) believe that despite evidence to the contrary is very valuable to Mr. Davis.

  22. Also, if the MLB and NFL are concerned about teams having a level playing field, there’s a simple solution: Give the teams with less revenue a bigger share of the league pie. Which is precisely what both leagues do via revenue sharing.

  23. … and to save skeptics the trouble of asking (and waiting)….

    1996 or before

    Buffalo………..1973
    Miami………….1987
    Jacksonville…1995
    San Diego……1967
    Minnesota……1982
    Atlanta…………1992
    Carolina……….1996
    St. Louis………1995

    1996-2001
    Washington…..1997
    Baltimore………1998
    Cincinnati……..2000
    Cleveland……..1999
    Pittsburgh……. 2001
    Tennessee…… 1999
    Tampa Bay……1998

  24. Well i think there is framework agreement in place for the A’s to “explore” other areas (including SJ). I think the prohibiting factor causing delays is the CBA, more specifically LW/JF’s hesitancy is to lose baseball welfare AND pay the Gnats. Yes, I think there is a monetary amount that will be paid, and there is probably a backdoor agreement of the amount that is essentially subsidized by MLB by virtue of them staying in Oakland. I don’t think the A’s want it to be known publicly because they are essentially using Oakland to get the welfare checks, and the Giants don’t want their fanbase to know that extra money is coming in, since they would want them to spend it (look at Baer’s latest mails to STHs). In the end, this compromise would have all parties win: Oakland get’s the A’s a bit longer, Giants get their money, A’s get San Jose, and San Jose gets an MLB team.

  25. Has anybody read Robert Gammons column. I’ll tell u what i think….MLB, Selig, etc have been hearing the Wolff-should-sell and there’s-plenty-of-sites-in-Oakland sermons from East Bay and Frisco writers for years but have been unmoved by any of it. MLB has neither directed Wolff to build in Oakland or sell to someone who will. Because MLB has looked at, and concurred with, Wolff’s findings that options have been exhausted in the A’s current territory. We all know Selig would love it if an Oakland solution suddenly appeared. But it never has and is unlikely to do so, absent a huge pile of public funds from Oakland that is not coming

  26. I am pro-Oakland, I am Pro- San Joes, I am Pro-Fremont, at this point it does not matter, ML has been over every conceivable piece of financial data that’s out there, San Jose it a great place for the A’s do we really have to go over all the reasons . Please all this leads to be an Oakland vs. San Jose debate. Let me say this, as one of the most pro-Oakland folks, that regularly comment here San Jose is the best solution, for the A’s, that does not mean Oakland can’t work, and lord knows it would take a lot for that to happen, but I just get so tired, when we are reduced the SJ vs. Oakland argument it’s so old.Hopefully this will eventually mean good news for the raiders, at Coliseum City. For anyone to suggest that’s its good news for the A’s, or even potential of good news for the A’s (in Oakland), is either not thinking clearly, or vary misinformed, at this point it may not even be good news for the raiders (given Mark Davis stated desire on a lease extension), at Coliseum City. The only truly good news, is that Oakland is actually doing something (with the potential of significance), and that may me too little too late.Jeffrey made the point (I think it was the last post), that we tend to overreact, when any little amount of news is released, I could not agree with him more, and as I said earlier, up to this point San Jose has been restricted from making any news, thanks to the Giants/MLB, and Oakland/ Alameda county can’t seem to get there head out of their A– long enough to make any…

  27. It isn’t SJ v Oakland, Berry. IF MLB decides to move the A’s, they will look at all options (and will probably be heavily biased toward sites where another club doesn’t have territorial rights that would need to be addressed).

    You telling us what you think has no bearing on MLB’s rules or policies. I appreciate that you believe San Jose is “the only” answer, however that is not the case. The A’s moving to San Jose is just one of many possible outcomes, and for my money is some way down the list of likely outcomes (because of the Giants territorial claim – that Wolff seems very much unwilling to address).

  28. The only “settlement” Wolf-ie wants is $0.
    No guarantee that SJ “levels” the field, then what?
    A’z ain’t goin’ nowhere that will be better than SJ and
    the Coli needs the 81 home openings more than the A’z do.
    Would not be surprising if Lew-Lew sticks SJ taxpayers for invasion fee.
    The A’z are a gnat on the Gi-ants rump, without much effort Larry B. & co. will control the market for the foreseeable future leaving the conspiracy theorists to spin their wheels in the Mausoleum bleachers.
    Raiderz new place in the parking lot? Where do the new parking spaces magically appear from? Not a problem for the A’z but Raiderz do draw close to full capacity.
    The Shea/Citi situation is a prime example of mallpark displacement causes problems – at least for those who don’t pony-up for parking months in advance.
    Where would the Raiderz go, LA? No way, NFL wants that for expansion to soak some sucker into entry fees that would be greater than transfer $’s.
    If there were any viable options in Oak after all the years action would have commenced long ago, a similar city – Newark NJ built a ballpark that draws flies and an arena which the anchor tenant refuses to pay rent owed. There are parallels, a struggling city near a prosperous one.
    No wonder that the A’z, Warriors and possibly Raiderz want out, they read the papers.
    Of course Wolf-ie isn’t interested in Oak, greater chance that the per customer $’s in SJ will dwarf any effort in Oak – old place or new.
    None of the MLB national TV partners have any interest in a franchise move outside of US markets – especially #5 & #14 – since they don’t have outlets that can be rated in Montreal. MLB barely tolerates Toronto now and Rogers isn’t interested in having their monopoly across Canada being horned-in on.
    NFL doesn’t get “mad” the get even and more.
    “Fairness” as it is being thrown out here isn’t in the vocabulary of NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL – good explanation Neil.
    A’z continue to be haunted by Charlie’s specter, the franchise of the damned.

  29. San Jose is the only way for the A’s to remain the Bay Area. Have you seen what the Oakland city council has come up with over the years?

    In 2001 HOK did a study of all possible sites in the East Bay. Howard Terminal was deemed the least feasible in 2001 and the city now says it is feasible? What has changed? Nothing….The site is contaminated, there is no parking, there are railroads that go in and out of there and there is no freeway infrastructure to support all the cars coming in and out. But yet the City of Oakland says it is good to go? No BART access either….

    The Coliseum site was considered a no go back then and was not included in the study….for obvious reasons.

    Even before the city said HT was the best site, they promoted Victory Court which had 16 businesses on it not willing to sell…..The City started an EIR but stopped midway when they decided kicking out 16 owners with Eminent Domain and re-doing the site was too much $$…..What morons!

    HT and Victory Court are 200M each just to say “hello”. …Forget ballpark costs itself

    The other sites explored in the HOK study are all gone. Wolff went after Fremont and spent 24M (16M non-recoverable) for the land. He just recently is selling it but at a loss after the downturn in the market.

    Why would anyone in their right mind spend all that money just to “fake it”?? Wolff was dead serious and he even tried another site in Fremont before that failed because of NIMBY’s who massive pockets.

    MLB put out a committee just to make sure Wolff was not “faking it” and in 5 years come January they have zero to report….If Wolff missed something it would have been brought to his attention as Selig is too cowardly take on the Giants.

    Selig ,if he could would rather ask the other owners for a loan to get something up in Oakland but that would be unprecedented….Rather than do the right thing and overrule the Giants and let the A’s into San Jose where they should have been 10 years ago.

    It is over for the A’s in Oakland, Selig has been praying for a Oakland miracle for years and he is not getting it. He instead is getting a lawsuit from SJ that is far from over and will make him and his fellow owners look terrible once it goes to trial.

    If anyone thinks the East Bay is still viable they are in a “dreamworld” and in “denial”. MLB’s 5 years of silence from their BRC tells you that.

  30. *Why would anyone in their right mind spend all that money just to “fake it”?? Wolff was dead serious and he even tried another site in Fremont before that failed because of NIMBY’s who have massive pockets.

  31. With the proposed Coliseum City development group now formally recognized and funded by the Oakland city council, does that change the A’s situation (see newballpark.org for story)? I have to believe that the A’s aren’t going to sign anything until they see if a massive football stadium is about to be built next door or on top of them. It still would probably take 2 years before any groundbreaking, unless someone already has the plans available.

    But one thing that comes to mind is whether a Coliseum City developer really wants the old O.co Coliseum next door to their shiny new football stadium and development? It’s potentially competition (unless it ends up like the Astrodome – unused) and the A’s take up 81+ event days out of the year if they can’t have events at the same time. As long as the A’s remain it also impacts the ability for the Raiders to schedule games due to shared parking.

    So, I have to wonder what effect the ramped-up Coliseum City project will have on the A’s? Of course, the odds are still best that Coliseum City will go nowhere and the developer will quietly disappear after conducting a study and finding no way to make a profit in this century.

  32. Coliseum City hasn’t been funded by anybody. Right now it’s just a bunch of city officials and developers agreeing to look into the possibility of a proposal for a something. Which is way further ahead than it was a few months ago, but I’m still not going to take it seriously until I see somebody opening their wallet.

    At some point soon, though, I agree that they are going to have to decide whether to include stadiums for the Raiders, A’s, or what. Even if you’re just planning vaportecture, the rendering guys have to know what to render.

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