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Monday, November 04, 2013

SF Gate: MLB may help A’s play in S.F. if no deal - sources

Bobby Murcer ain’t gonna like this one bit…oh, wait…and wait again.

Major League Baseball would help the Oakland A’s move across the bay and play at rival Giants’ AT&T Park in San Francisco if Coliseum officials don’t come to terms on a new short-term lease for the team, sources tell us.

The A’s two-year home stint at AT&T Park, which would start next season, would probably be the first step toward moving the team out of the Bay Area.

The league’s hardball warning was passed on to Coliseum officials at a closed-door meeting by Jon Streeter, the San Francisco attorney who is representing the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Authority in the stadium lease negotiations.

We’re told MLB is also demanding that the Coliseum give the A’s just a two-year lease extension - not the five- to eight-year deal the authority has been pushing.

The short-term lease would give the A’s more flexibility should the team’s owners swing a deal to move to San Jose - or beyond.

The sticking point in the Coliseum negotiations hasn’t been the length of the lease so much as the money from food and beverage concessions. Under their old lease, the A’s managed the concessions for all sporting events at the stadium, including for the Raiders, and they got a major share of the revenue - terms the Coliseum Authority wants to change in its favor.

The talks have dragged on for more than two years. Now, however, the Coliseum’s governing board - which includes two Oakland City Council members and two Alameda County supervisors - is definitely feeling the heat.

“Now we have to do this lease quickly because Major League Baseball has injected itself into the conversations,” said one board member, who like our other sources asked not to be named because of the sensitivity of the talks.

Repoz Posted: November 04, 2013 at 05:35 AM | 85 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: oakland, san francisco

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   1. RMc's desperate, often sordid world Posted: November 04, 2013 at 08:37 AM (#4593278)
Move 'em back to Philly!
   2. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: November 04, 2013 at 09:07 AM (#4593285)
KC can support 2 teams, right?

I always have a mistaken impression of what the Bay area looks like due to the N/S height of the bay. And back when I was a kid I thought SF was on the mainland for some reason.
   3. thok Posted: November 04, 2013 at 09:19 AM (#4593291)
So the A's could't play in San Jose for years since the Giants had territorial rights, but now they can play in the Giants' own stadium? Stay classy, MLB.
   4. John Northey Posted: November 04, 2013 at 09:32 AM (#4593295)
Eh, move them to Montreal. They'd be the only team there and it'd be interesting to watch although I doubt they'd make much more (if any more).
   5. TerpNats Posted: November 04, 2013 at 09:49 AM (#4593303)
The A's co-tenants, the Raiders, played their initial AFL home season of 1960 at Candlestick Park (and yes, that year they were named the Oakland Raiders).
   6. BochysFingers Posted: November 04, 2013 at 09:52 AM (#4593306)
Glenn Dickey proposed this idea some time back. I don't think it's the worst idea ever:

1) It gives the A's a decent place to play, with easy public transportation to a good neighborhood.
2) It gives the Giants an extra source of revenue.
3) It gives SOMA more business.
   7. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 04, 2013 at 09:54 AM (#4593308)
KC can support 2 teams, right?



We did support the Blues and Monarchs for several years, and most of the time, the Royals don't act like a MLB franchise, so yea, it would work.
   8. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: November 04, 2013 at 10:09 AM (#4593316)
KC would certainly be more convenient for me. But I'd be fine with the AT&T. It's a great place to watch a game. They'd probably draw better there than at the Coliseum. Montreal would be amusing but Olympic is about as bad as the Coliseum. Is Jarry still standing?

And back when I was a kid I thought SF was on the mainland for some reason.
It is on the mainland. You can drive to it from Los Angeles without crossing any bridges if you want.
   9. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: November 04, 2013 at 10:32 AM (#4593330)
This is pretty much the opposite of a credible threat. MLB might as well say that they'll hire a strike team of unicorn commandos to murder every man, woman, and child in Alameda County.
   10. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: November 04, 2013 at 11:06 AM (#4593362)
Is Jarry still standing?

Yes, but it's not a baseball stadium any longer.
   11. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: November 04, 2013 at 11:14 AM (#4593366)
That Jarry link in #10 is about as uplifting as hearing that the some of the survivors of Columbine wound up being killed in Aurora.

Uniprix Stadium (French: Stade Uniprix) is the main tennis court at the Canada Masters tournament in Montreal, Quebec. Built in 1996, the centre court stadium currently holds 11,700 spectators.[1] It was formerly known as Du Maurier Stadium, after the cigarettes brand. It had since been renamed after Uniprix, a major pharmacy chain in Quebec.

The twelve courts at this venue use the DecoTurf cushioned acrylic surface, the same surface as the U.S. Open Grand Slam event.

Its core seating area is a remnant of the former Major League Baseball stadium on the site, Jarry Park Stadium, the original home of the Montreal Expos.
   12. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: November 04, 2013 at 11:34 AM (#4593384)
I don't see a problem with a baseball team playing on a "cushioned acrylic surface". Sounds fun.
   13. esseff Posted: November 04, 2013 at 12:19 PM (#4593419)
Uniprix? Gotta be "pree" on that last syllable.
   14. zenbitz Posted: November 04, 2013 at 01:28 PM (#4593474)
I guess I wouldn't have to worry about which days the traffic in SOMA would be bad...
   15. Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat Posted: November 04, 2013 at 02:00 PM (#4593504)
After the 2002 season there was a rumor that the Expos would play in Fenway for the 2003 season en route to moving to wherever they were going to go. (As someone who worked a mile from the park, I desperately wanted it to be true. Alas...)

It's interesting that the same sort of rumor is being floated now. Not interesting in that I think it will happen, it just points to the possibility that the behind-the-scenes machinations in Oakland are borrowing from similar maneuverings regarding the Expos.
   16. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: November 04, 2013 at 02:05 PM (#4593506)
Uniprix? Gotta be "pree" on that last syllable.

Yes, indeed.
   17. Flynn Posted: November 04, 2013 at 02:08 PM (#4593509)
Seeing as Denis Coderre, Expos fan and the Chretien government's man on the scene during the Labatt Park days, just got elected mayor of Montreal, the turn to Expos chat in this thread seems appropriate.
   18. Eric Ferguson Posted: November 04, 2013 at 02:25 PM (#4593522)
Probably won't happen, but it would be interesting to see how playing in a different ballpark would affect A's attendance. Would they draw better because of the new park? Worse because it's essentially one step closer to moving away entirely?
   19. A triple short of the cycle Posted: November 04, 2013 at 02:50 PM (#4593555)
Matier and Ross are hack losers.
   20. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: November 04, 2013 at 03:25 PM (#4593609)
The problem with the "move the A's" thing is that there's nowhere to go. As a practical matter, the best available market is . . . the Bay Area. I mean, NY/NJ or the Inland Empire of CA could support another team, but that's never going to happen. Other than that, the options are . . . what? Portland? You're just creating another Kansas City / Milwaukee-type market, and the city ain't paying for a new stadium. Las Vegas? Far too small. Vancouver, Montreal? Yeah, right.

It would be interesting if they spent a couple of seasons at Phone Company, but as a stepping stone to moving the team out of the Bay Area? It just doesn't make any sense.
   21. deputydrew Posted: November 04, 2013 at 03:32 PM (#4593629)
What would this do to attendance for the Giants games? I assume there are a fair number of fans that simply want to go to the ballpark, rather than to see any particular player, team or matchup. That fan (or family) would likely choose to go to an A's game rather than a Giants game, as the tickets would undoubtedly be cheaper. I'd love to hear what an economist would say about that, and if it would make it harder for the Giants to charge higher prices for their tickets when the A's game the day before was 30% cheaper.
   22. Gamingboy Posted: November 04, 2013 at 03:40 PM (#4593642)
The problem with the "move the A's" thing is that there's nowhere to go. As a practical matter, the best available market is . . . the Bay Area. I mean, NY/NJ or the Inland Empire of CA could support another team, but that's never going to happen. Other than that, the options are . . . what? Portland? You're just creating another Kansas City / Milwaukee-type market, and the city ain't paying for a new stadium. Las Vegas? Far too small. Vancouver, Montreal? Yeah, right.


I think Maury Brown did something recently and basically said that, yeah, in essence, there's nowhere to go, and the places that they COULD go to either are already firmly in other teams' territory, lack major corporate bases, or have some other type of red flag (like the fact Montreal JUST LOST THEIR TEAM a decade ago and only now is even half-seriously being put forward as a possible candidate for getting one again).

   23. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: November 04, 2013 at 03:54 PM (#4593658)
Las Vegas? Far too small.


I've always thought that Las Vegas could absolutely support a team with their tourist base, IF they were allowed to run the team in a very Vegas-style way, with lots of glitz. They'd need a domed stadium to cope with the desert weather but I don't see why a properly focused owner with a suitable entrepreneurial bent couldn't fill the stands given Vegas's access to elite entertainment talent and its winking "anything goes" vibe that could manifest itself in a dozen ways, from ballgirls in hot pants and tank tops to a concourse tattoo shop selling team logos for $10. Make it fun, make it unlike anything else in the league, make it Las Vegas. People will show up.
   24. tshipman Posted: November 04, 2013 at 04:11 PM (#4593675)
I don't get how this threat would work. Are the Giants offering to host the A's? The Giants own their ballpark. Not sure how MLB would force them to open up for the A's.
   25. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: November 04, 2013 at 04:18 PM (#4593682)
Question: who were the last two teams to share a stadium? The Yankees and Mets in 1974-75? Were there others I can't remember after? How did that go? How were attendances affected? I'm curious.

Also:
-[FTA]: The Giants and A's have home games on the same dates ONLY nine times next season?

-If that move happened, the A's would probably be the only team that would share a stadium with another team twice in their history. (I might be missing some, however).
   26. Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat Posted: November 04, 2013 at 04:25 PM (#4593690)
I think Maury Brown did something recently and basically said that, yeah, in essence, there's nowhere to go, and the places that they COULD go to either are already firmly in other teams' territory, lack major corporate bases, or have some other type of red flag (like the fact Montreal JUST LOST THEIR TEAM a decade ago and only now is even half-seriously being put forward as a possible candidate for getting one again).

Right. The US metropolitan statistical area without MLB that has the highest gross metropolitan product is San Jose. If Oakland has to move, that's the one that makes sense.

Anyway, I made a list of every US metro without area without MLB that is in the top 50 in population, TV market, and gross metropolitan product. I listed them all by their overall rank and totaled together their ranks in all three categories, so the lower total score is better. I left out statistical areas that are really part of other MLB markets (basically San Jose and Riverside), and this obviously ignores Canada and Mexico. These are the results:

Total City        GMP    TV   Pop
65    Portland     20    22    23
75    Orlando      30    19    26
77    Sacramento   33    20    24
79    Charlotte    21    25    33
85    Indianapolis 25    26    34
95    Columbus     31    32    32
97    San Antonio  36    36    25
102   Nashville    35    29    38
104   Las Vegas    34    40    30
112   Austin       32    45    35
116   Hartford     41    30    45
121   Raleigh      49    24    48
125   Salt Lake C
42    33    50
131   Oklahoma Cty 46    41    44
135   Memphis      45    49    41
137   Louisville   47    48    42
138   Jacksonville 48    50    40
141   Birmingham   50    42    49 

None of these look like really good choices. Orlando has to be out because of Tampa and Miami. Portland couldn't support AAA baseball and wouldn't be likely to build a stadium. Charlotte just isn't all that big, and despite the GMP it's a financial center that hasn't really recovered from the banking crisis. So the Inland Empire? Indianapolis? Why would either of these work better than San Jose?
   27. Danny Posted: November 04, 2013 at 04:28 PM (#4593692)
The problem with the "move the A's" thing is that there's nowhere to go.

If only they had a deal in place to build a privately financed stadium in the 10th biggest city in the country.
   28. Traderdave Posted: November 04, 2013 at 04:34 PM (#4593696)
If the A's MUST move, then Sacramento is where they should go. For starters, it's already A's country. The Rivercats are the A's AAA team and in most years they lead AAA teams in attendance. I've read estimates that 10-15% of the A's gate is Sacramento-area fans. Considering that drive, it's a dedicated fanbase.

They'd be the #1 draw in Sac-town. If they move to SJ, they are still decidedly second fiddle.


While the Bay Area looks like a 2 team market if you consider raw population figures, when one considers the makeup of the population, it really isn't. A very large number of people here are transplants who maintain their hometown fan loyalty. Ask the Florida teams how that helps with attendance. Also, note that a large chunk of the Bay Area' population is made up of immigrants from places without a baseball culture. On top of that demographic wrinkle, it should be noted that the Bay Area has a great wealth of competeing entertainment & recreation options. Not to diss Sacramento, but...

Considering that the A's have stayed between the ditches in the Bay Area despite these challenges, it's fair to say they can continue to make a profit in Oakland and have no need to move. If they must move, though, Sacramento is their best option.

   29. Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat Posted: November 04, 2013 at 04:34 PM (#4593697)
I've always thought that Las Vegas could absolutely support a team with their tourist base, IF they were allowed to run the team in a very Vegas-style way, with lots of glitz.

In 2012 Vegas had something like 20 million visitors between April and September, more or less evenly spread out. If you hope to have 2 million tourists come to games, you probably need 1 of every 12 to 15 visitors to come to a game (assuming that some will go to more than one). Is this doable? You'd also have to keep in mind that Vegas would be the worst TV market in MLB, so they'd be very dependent on things like attendance to make money. They'd also be extremely vulnerable to any sort of large-scale economic issues -- it can cost a lot of money to go to a baseball game, but it would cost a lot more money to go to a baseball game as part of your Las Vegas vacation.
   30. OsunaSakata Posted: November 04, 2013 at 04:42 PM (#4593705)
The A's co-tenants, the Raiders, played their initial AFL home season of 1960 at Candlestick Park (and yes, that year they were named the Oakland Raiders).


According to ballparks.com, the Raiders were in Candlestick in 1961. They began in 1960 in Kezar Stadium, which is also in San Francisco, but has since been demolished and rebuilt with a smaller seating capacity.
   31. Steve Treder Posted: November 04, 2013 at 04:45 PM (#4593708)
I don't get how this threat would work. Are the Giants offering to host the A's? The Giants own their ballpark. Not sure how MLB would force them to open up for the A's.

Yeah, this thing sounds rather far-fetched to me. I suppose anything's possible, but sharing the Giants' ballpark would be suboptimal for both the A's and Giants.
   32. Traderdave Posted: November 04, 2013 at 04:46 PM (#4593711)
I don't get how this threat would work. Are the Giants offering to host the A's? The Giants own their ballpark. Not sure how MLB would force them to open up for the A's.

Yeah, this thing sounds rather far-fetched to me. I suppose anything's possible, but sharing the Giants' ballpark would be suboptimal for both the A's and Giants.


Yes, Oakland/Alameda County should call this bluff. It aint gonna happen.
   33. theboyqueen Posted: November 04, 2013 at 05:01 PM (#4593729)
I grew up in San Jose and live in Sacramento. The A's are already situated in a perfect place to draw fans from both places. It takes 80 minutes to get from Sac to Oakland. It takes 40 minutes to get from San Jose to Oakland. What they need to do is aggressively market the team in those areas. They may be starting to do this -- I live in Sacramento and this year was the first year I could hear all the A's games on the radio here (on the Kings station no less).

The best place for the A's to build a stadium is, you guessed it, Oakland. If the Raiders move they could just demolish Mt. Davis and upgrade what they have. Perhaps the Raiders should move to Sacramento; I bet well more than 10-15% of the Raider game attendees are from the central valley.

I can't imagine the Giants would want the A's in their ballpark. The yuppie fans that fill that place wouldn't know the difference between the two teams. If the A's continue to be better than the Giants and their tickets are cheaper they may well outdraw them, as they did prior to that stadium being built.
   34. Danny Posted: November 04, 2013 at 05:14 PM (#4593736)
Remember when the Giants were going to play half their home games in Oakland in 1978?*

And then again in 1985?

*OK, I don't remember either, cause I hadn't been conceived yet.
   35. Steve Treder Posted: November 04, 2013 at 05:21 PM (#4593748)
The best place for the A's to build a stadium is, you guessed it, Oakland.

Absolutely correct.
   36. theboyqueen Posted: November 04, 2013 at 05:54 PM (#4593778)
Those articles are funny! First the A's are moving to Denver. Then the Giants are moving to Denver. This is the first time I had heard of either.
   37. Gamingboy Posted: November 04, 2013 at 05:58 PM (#4593782)
None of these look like really good choices. Orlando has to be out because of Tampa and Miami. Portland couldn't support AAA baseball and wouldn't be likely to build a stadium. Charlotte just isn't all that big, and despite the GMP it's a financial center that hasn't really recovered from the banking crisis. So the Inland Empire? Indianapolis? Why would either of these work better than San Jose?



Portland wasn't so much "couldn't support AA baseball" so much as "they ran out of political and monetary ability to build a new baseball stadium after the old stadium was heavily renovated to allow for an MLS franchise to the point where it wasn't usable as a baseball venue anymore".


Charlotte won't happen anytime soon, and they finally realized it when they authorized building a new stadium, one that wouldn't be easily enlarged for a MLB bid. In fact, apparently the only reason it took this long to get a new stadium built was because there was one guy who was running a quixotic quest for an MLB team and kept coming up with ways to block or slow down the process of approving and building a smaller stadium.

Orlando and Vegas have the same problem that Tampa Bay and Miami have- a huge amount of the people that live there aren't really "from" there (and thus they probably already have a loyalty, such as the many Yankee and Red Sox fans in Tampa), and there are so many other things to do that the team would be lost in the commotion except or those times when they are in the playoffs.

...And so on, and so forth.

So, really, other than San Jose, there isn't any place for them to move too, at least in the USA. I mean, some people say that maybe Montreal COULD get a new team some point a decade or two down the line, and of course you occasionally hear pie-in-the-sky stuff about San Juan or a place in Mexico, but... yeah.
   38. Karl from NY Posted: November 04, 2013 at 06:37 PM (#4593803)
If you hope to have 2 million tourists come to games, you probably need 1 of every 12 to 15 visitors to come to a game (assuming that some will go to more than one). Is this doable?

Yeah, that's the big argument against Vegas and I'm surprised it took that long to come up. Tourists wouldn't go to baseball in Vegas. You can go to baseball anywhere. Spend your Vegas time doing Vegas things.
   39. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: November 04, 2013 at 06:48 PM (#4593809)
There was a brief period when the guy who ran the AAA American Association, who I think was Branch Rickey III, tried to interest the media in his fantastical notions about becoming the third major league. This would have included Denver, Louisville, Indianapolis, New Orleans, Buffalo, Oklahoma City, and I don't know what else.
   40. Steve Treder Posted: November 04, 2013 at 07:03 PM (#4593821)
There was a brief period when the guy who ran the AAA American Association, who I think was Branch Rickey III, tried to interest the media in his fantastical notions about becoming the third major league. This would have included Denver, Louisville, Indianapolis, New Orleans, Buffalo, Oklahoma City, and I don't know what else.

I'm pretty sure you're thinking of the Continental League, which was championed not by Branch Rickey III, but by the genuine article. It was that threat that prompted renewed congressional rumblings about the anti-trust exemption, and then prompted MLB to finally expand in 1960-61.

I'm quite sure there was never a movement to make the American Association a third major league. There was a serious attempt by the Pacific Coast League to do that, resulting in the PCL's unique "Open" classification from 1952-57.
   41. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: November 04, 2013 at 07:06 PM (#4593825)
No, I think this was about 25 years ago. That's why it was "fantastical". Several of the potential expansion markets had AAA teams and also had major-league teams in other sports.
   42. Steve Treder Posted: November 04, 2013 at 07:18 PM (#4593835)
No, I think this was about 25 years ago. That's why it was "fantastical".

Ah! Indeed.
   43. esseff Posted: November 04, 2013 at 07:27 PM (#4593845)
I think the best place for an A's stadium would be Vallejo. No, really. Near 80/680/780/37 freeway access where you can pick up fans from Oakland through Sacramento (plus Concord and the rest of Contra Costa, Fairfield, and possibly Marin thrown in if they could widen the Sears Point Highway. Think Six Flags neighborhood. Would lose the South Bay, of course, but then I don't know that the A's ever had it.
   44. esseff Posted: November 04, 2013 at 07:35 PM (#4593851)
I'm pretty sure you're thinking of the Continental League, which was championed not by Branch Rickey III, but by the genuine article. It was that threat that prompted renewed congressional rumblings about the anti-trust exemption, and then prompted MLB to finally expand in 1960-61.



In a 1959 game show appearance, Rickey makes the Continental League sound like a done deal.
   45. theboyqueen Posted: November 04, 2013 at 08:00 PM (#4593859)
I think the best place for an A's stadium would be Vallejo.


For those who think East Oakland isn't gritty enough.

Seriously though what advantage would Vallejo have over Oakland? Losing the south bay to pick up potential fans in...Sebastopol? is not a trivial thing. Oakland may have a poor corporate base but it is at least in proximity to silicon valley. Vallejo is quite literally bankrupt.

Oakland is the best location to pick up the east bay and Sacramento fans AND attract the rich folks in the south bay. I would argue, in fact, that it is a better location than San Francisco for all those reasons, as well as weather. They (meaning the A's) just need to build a nice stadium downtown or in Jack London Square and rethink their marketing strategy.
   46. A triple short of the cycle Posted: November 04, 2013 at 08:04 PM (#4593862)
I think the best place for an A's stadium would be Vallejo.

For the love of dog NO.

Edit: coke to theboyqueen
   47. boteman is not here 'til October Posted: November 04, 2013 at 08:23 PM (#4593871)
The best part about SaKROYmento is that it's 3073 miles to Ocean City.
   48. Walt Davis Posted: November 04, 2013 at 08:34 PM (#4593877)
Yeah, that's the big argument against Vegas and I'm surprised it took that long to come up. Tourists wouldn't go to baseball in Vegas. You can go to baseball anywhere. Spend your Vegas time doing Vegas things.

But you can't go to MLB anywhere, only in 26 metro areas (unless you want to count LA and Anaheim separately) and much of the country needs to travel from far away to get to those metro areas. What do Vegas tourists do during the day? Would people really rather plop down $80+ to see Wynonna Judd or Meatloaf than go to an MLB game? $66 for REO Speedwagon, $44 for somebody called Frankie Moreno, $60 for MO5AIC whoever they are? Merle Haggard is pulling $90 and Willie Nelson $110 which, praise Jesus, is a couple dollars more than Robin Thicke. If you hurry, you can catch Paul Williams this weekend!

People, especially women and non-gamblers, are getting up to all sorts of crap to fill their time in Vegas. You may have noticed that most of that entertainment is geared towards an older demographic, just like baseball. Not to mention I have no idea what the actual residents do for fun.

I mean I don't have a clue if it could actually work there but the resident population of Vegas is larger than the smallest MLB cities and (based on the earlier post) it's bringing in 20 million visitors during baseball season. Is that really a smaller market than Minneapolis or Pittsburgh? The Twins drew 2.5 million this year. Does it really have a worse future than Cleveland (only 1.6)?

To claim that places like Vegas, Indy (which I think might be the best choice), Sacramento and a few others can't support baseball is to also claim that some of Cleveland, KC, San Diego, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Tampa, Pittsburgh can't either -- which would mean that MLB is in massive trouble. This is especially true if we also claim that more teams in the massive markets of NY and LA and the large one-team markets of Boston and Philly couldn't possibly work either. MLB is hanging by a thread!

But pretty clearly baseball is not in trouble in terms of revenue and attendance. And clearly the people in KC and Milwaukee and somnambulist San Diego are willing to spend their money on baseball so why not Indy or Vegas or Charlotte or Portland?

I understand that it doesn't help the "problem" unless you can move the A's to somewhere they can make more money than they do now rather than just sending them to a small market where they will usually creep along at 1.5-2 million attendance. I agree that such a market doesn't clearly exist (outside of NY and LA). But that doesn't mean that MLB wouldn't work in these other markets just as well as it currently works in some MLB markets.
   49. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 04, 2013 at 08:48 PM (#4593880)
I've always thought that Las Vegas could absolutely support a team with their tourist base

Problem is that the tourist industry - meaning the casino hotels - isn't interested in encouraging the "tourists" to leave the casino. They aren't going to be buying suites or encouraging their guests to step away from the tables for 4 or 5 hours.
   50. asinwreck Posted: November 04, 2013 at 08:49 PM (#4593881)
If the A's move to a bankrupt city, Richmond has superior location over Vallejo. (Aside from the odd refinery explosion.)

Wolff should sell the team to Apple, with a new park built at One Infinite Loop in Cupertino.
   51. Steve Treder Posted: November 04, 2013 at 08:52 PM (#4593882)
What do Vegas tourists do during the day? Would people really rather plop down $80+ to see Wynonna Judd or Meatloaf than go to an MLB game? $66 for REO Speedwagon, $44 for somebody called Frankie Moreno, $60 for MO5AIC whoever they are? Merle Haggard is pulling $90 and Willie Nelson $110 which, praise Jesus, is a couple dollars more than Robin Thicke. If you hurry, you can catch Paul Williams this weekend!

If you're going to get people to go to a ballgame during the day in Las Vegas from May through September, it will have to be a domed and air-conditioned stadium, because it's 100 degrees. That has to be factored into the stadium construction/operations costs.

At night it will cool down to 85, though.
   52. Steve Treder Posted: November 04, 2013 at 08:57 PM (#4593884)
Wolff should sell the team to Apple, with a new park built at One Infinite Loop in Cupertino.

Apple's already building a spaceship at the corner of Wolfe and Homestead in Cupertino.
   53. BDC Posted: November 04, 2013 at 09:10 PM (#4593888)
I have no idea what the actual residents do for fun

Based on CSI, I'd say they spend all their time murdering each other.
   54. Steve Treder Posted: November 04, 2013 at 09:13 PM (#4593890)
Based on CSI, I'd say they spend all their time murdering each other.

But what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.
   55. boteman is not here 'til October Posted: November 04, 2013 at 09:17 PM (#4593892)
The Vegas Bandits has a nice ring to it.

The primary problem of alternative cities is whose ox will be gored the least. So Hizzonerforlife Bud will have to determine which team will gripe the least or is most easily coerced into accepting a change in team territories, as this is what I understood to be the biggest impediment to relocation or expansion.

I guess nobody is mentioning the C-word.
   56. asinwreck Posted: November 04, 2013 at 09:18 PM (#4593893)

Apple's already building a spaceship at the corner of Wolfe and Homestead in Cupertino.

It's as round as the Coliseum pre-Mount Davis. A perfect new home for the A's.
   57. thok Posted: November 04, 2013 at 09:56 PM (#4593903)
While it would never happen, New York City would probably support the A's as a third baseball team better than most other cities being considered would have a first team. You might even be able to move the A's to the suburbs in New Jersey and have them succeed.
   58. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: November 04, 2013 at 10:07 PM (#4593910)
It takes 80 minutes to get from Sac to Oakland. It takes 40 minutes to get from San Jose to Oakland.


Bwaa, haa, haa, haa. Maybe at 2:00am. I went to Berkeley and lived in SF for 4 years whilst sort of attending uni(and passing!)so I know Bay area traffic. Oh, and my folks now live in Auburn(40 minutes north of Sacramento) so I know Sacramento traffic also. No way, never can you make Sacramento to the bay area in 80 minutes in the middle of any working day unless you get the once a year perfect run.

However, yes, the A's if they move, should definitely go to Sacramento. Heck, you'd draw fans from Stockton, Modesto and probably as far as Fresno(I have relos in Fresno that drive to the bay area to watch both the Giants and A's)
   59. Squash Posted: November 04, 2013 at 10:15 PM (#4593916)
If you're going to get people to go to a ballgame during the day in Las Vegas from May through September, it will have to be a domed and air-conditioned stadium, because it's 100 degrees. That has to be factored into the stadium construction/operations costs.

Yeah you gotta think climate control in Vegas would be a major expense. 100 degrees is on the low end a lot of days in there. Clearly what they need is a fall-winter football team to maximize the football/gambling cohabitation and to add another home run Superbowl spot.
   60. Tom T Posted: November 04, 2013 at 10:44 PM (#4593925)
Indy (which I think might be the best choice)


If this basketball-crazy state (though I bet the Pacers wish that held for professional basketball) could support the then-Dolts (a valid Bermanism, if ever there was one) for a decade of miserable performance and didn't exhibit fanbase cratering during the Curtis Painter era (shudder!), it can probably support a MLB team better than might be expected. (Heck, there ain't THAT much to do between planting and harvesting, after all. Cow tipping is only entertaining so many nights in a row....)

Would Cincy be the team that balks the most at this? 2+ hours away would seem to make that less than wholly credible, so it may also be the least-problematic of the "near to existing teams" options.
   61. Traderdave Posted: November 04, 2013 at 10:49 PM (#4593927)
Cincy would scream bloody murder about a team in Indy. Cubs would be none too happy either, though obviously better able to absorb the loss.
   62. Tom T Posted: November 04, 2013 at 10:59 PM (#4593930)
Cincy would scream bloody murder about a team in Indy.


Okay, never quite clear from this side of Naptown --- lots of Reds fans come up out of Indy, but with Cubs fandom basically endemic to this part of the state (except for a few diehard Sox bugs), I don't get a sense of how much value Cincy places on Indy. If they'd go berserk, it probably isn't going to happen. Too bad...we'd go to Indy for games frequently, I suspect. While we only hit 1-3 Indians games per year, an MLB team would be a big draw to my boys. Chicago is impractical except for day games (assuming we don't already have activities) and Cincy is just far enough for it to basically necessitate making it a multi-day trip.

I do remember one of the Simon brothers pushing for the Arrows to be an MLB team in Indy. Timing (as I recall it) seems odd, however, as it was nowhere near the time that there was actual expansion in the works, and I don't recall Indy ever putting in a bid at the time of the Rockies/Marlins. (Old Hoosier Dome was NOT actually reconfigurable for baseball, as I recall?)
   63. theboyqueen Posted: November 04, 2013 at 11:28 PM (#4593939)
Bwaa, haa, haa, haa. Maybe at 2:00am. I went to Berkeley and lived in SF for 4 years whilst sort of attending uni(and passing!)so I know Bay area traffic. Oh, and my folks now live in Auburn(40 minutes north of Sacramento) so I know Sacramento traffic also. No way, never can you make Sacramento to the bay area in 80 minutes in the middle of any working day unless you get the once a year perfect run.


I do this all the time. There isn't really any traffic going west on 80 past Davis in the afternoons. It's 70 miles of freeway from Sacramento to Richmond BART. BART is 40 minutes to the stadium. All the traffic is between Berkeley and Oakland.

There is also RTE 160 which is a beautiful drive through the delta that follows the Sacramento River to Antioch. There is literally no traffic ever on this road unless you get stuck behind a tractor. You can then hop on the BART at pittsburg/bay point. This takes longer but is quite an amazing drive through old Chinese ghost towns and along creaky drawbridges.

On Fridays and weekends you can definitely drive straight from Sacramento to the Oakland Coliseum in 80 minutes, unless its Sunday afternoon and everyone is coming back from Tahoe.
   64. theboyqueen Posted: November 04, 2013 at 11:32 PM (#4593940)
And what on earth would make Indianapolis a better place for a baseball team than either Oakland or Sacramento? Sacramento basically IS Indianapolis with bike lanes and better weather. I've always said (and I've lived here for awhile) that Sacramento is where the midwest begins. I think it ends somewhere around Framingham or Worcester.
   65. Roger McDowell spit on me! Posted: November 05, 2013 at 12:02 AM (#4593950)
There was some loose talk about the Raiders looking around in Concord recently. I'm a little surprised the A's haven't explored going that route if San Jose doesn't work - still have lots of freeway proximity (24 and 680) for Bay Area fans, it would have access from the South Bay and the Sacramento/central valley area, and be relatively close to BART if they can get the right site.
   66. Steve Treder Posted: November 05, 2013 at 12:07 AM (#4593954)
There was some loose talk about the Raiders looking around in Concord recently. I'm a little surprised the A's haven't explored going that route if San Jose doesn't work - still have lots of freeway proximity (24 and 680) for Bay Area fans, it would have access from the South Bay and the Sacramento/central valley area, and be relatively close to BART if they can get the right site.

And none of this, Vallejo or otherwise, would be as good as: Oakland.
   67. Roger McDowell spit on me! Posted: November 05, 2013 at 12:26 AM (#4593959)
I agree 99.9%. The .1% is because I started working in Concord about a month ago - easy getaway to a game!
   68. theboyqueen Posted: November 05, 2013 at 12:29 AM (#4593962)
The Raiders moving ANYWHERE would be a boon to both Oakland and the A's (I say this as a Raider fan). I would be all for the Raiders moving to Vallejo or Stockton or Bakersfield or Honolulu or whatever.

On a related note; moving the Warriors to SF (as seems to be their plan) is stupid. They already own the bay area market and have an incredible fanbase. What is to be gained by moving?
   69. Squash Posted: November 05, 2013 at 02:00 AM (#4593977)
They already own the bay area market and have an incredible fanbase. What is to be gained by moving?

Corporate dollars. Which is the same reason the A's want to move to San Jose.
   70. SoSH U at work Posted: November 05, 2013 at 02:00 AM (#4593978)
If this basketball-crazy state (though I bet the Pacers wish that held for professional basketball) could support the then-Dolts (a valid Bermanism, if ever there was one) for a decade of miserable performance and didn't exhibit fanbase cratering during the Curtis Painter era (shudder!), it can probably support a MLB team better than might be expected. (Heck, there ain't THAT much to do between planting and harvesting, after all. Cow tipping is only entertaining so many nights in a row....)


I think Indy would do a terrible job of supporting an MLB franchise. The fans in every corner of the state have long-standing, pre-existing loyalties to MLB's oldest franchises. You've got Chicago X2 in the Northwest (the White Sox are the team of choice in the Region, the Cubs are the favored club beyond there), Detroit in the NE, St. Louis in the SW and Cincinnati in the Central/East).

The Reds used to do a much better job of marketing into Central Indiana than they do now (watched Pete beat Cobb on local TV as a college freshman in 1985). But yeah, they'd still raise holy hell about an Indy team.

On the other hand, Victory Field is a fantastic ballpark. Whether its possible/how much it would cost to upgrade it to an MLB facility, I don't know.

   71. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: November 05, 2013 at 02:38 AM (#4593990)
The problem with the "move the A's" thing is that there's nowhere to go. As a practical matter, the best available market is . . . the Bay Area. I mean, NY/NJ or the Inland Empire of CA could support another team, but that's never going to happen.

I disagree that more teams in NY and LA are "never going to happen". They probably won't happen soon, but "never" is a very long time. If for example the Rays moved to Brooklyn:

1) 1 fewer team getting revenue sharing
2) Less need for Yankees to pay Luxury Tax since Bud has 1 fewer problem that requires a slush fund
3) National TV contract becomes more valuable
4) Yankees and Mets have a slightly less giant advantage over everybody else making it attractive for 28 teams
5) Anti-trust exemption might live longer because the damage from the exemption that says NYC residents are under-served and exploited by the duopoly is mitigated
6) NY becomes a viable threat to hold over other cities in negotiations

It might take 30 years or something but I'd be very surprised if it "never" happens
   72. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: November 05, 2013 at 10:43 AM (#4594051)
I've always thought that Las Vegas could absolutely support a team with their tourist base

Problem is that the tourist industry - meaning the casino hotels - isn't interested in encouraging the "tourists" to leave the casino. They aren't going to be buying suites or encouraging their guests to step away from the tables for 4 or 5 hours.


Well as I mentioned you couldn't run a Vegas team the same way you'd run a team anywhere else - it would have to be a VEGAS team. It would have to bring that Vegas experience into a ballpark, and that would require an ownership won't just sit on their hands and cry "woe is me, send me the free cash" when the standard model doesn't work. You don't compete with the casinos, you partner with them. The days of Mickey Mantle and Willie Mays being punished by the league for associating with a casino are long gone. Players are so well-compensated that the idea of them throwing a game for a bookie or some goons is neigh-unthinkable.

One of the many pernicious effects of Bud's shameful "revenue stealing" boondoggle is that it doesn't incentivise the poormouth owners to do anything but cry and hold out their tin cups for handouts, when they should be encouraged to innovate and expand their market. Las Vegas has made billions off getting suckers to drop money on crap - you don't think something as awesome as baseball could be successfully marketed there?
   73. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: November 05, 2013 at 10:59 AM (#4594071)
Players are so well-compensated that the idea of them throwing a game for a bookie or some goons is neigh-unthinkable.


For chrissake, enough with the A-Rod jokes.
   74. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 05, 2013 at 11:02 AM (#4594075)
The big problem with Vegas is there is absolutely nothing around Vegas. Their RSN would pay bupkis to send the feed to Reno and Carson City.

A new team would require a new market that can bring a new region. That would be somewhere like Charlotte or Portland. Maybe Nashville. Maybe Salt Lake or Vegas in a few decades if those areas fill in more.
   75. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: November 05, 2013 at 11:12 AM (#4594081)
The famous Salt Lake / Vegas market. The cities have so much in common!

Put the team equidistant between the cities. Which is apparently in an uninhabited area between the Wah Wah Mountains and the North Wah Wah Mountains, along State Route 21.
   76. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: November 05, 2013 at 11:21 AM (#4594092)
The big problem with Vegas is there is absolutely nothing around Vegas. Their RSN would pay bupkis to send the feed to Reno and Carson City.


You market the team as America's Team - a destination for fans of all sports and anyone who loves entertainment in all its stripes. Get rid of the staid, old-timey broadcasters and bring in an entertainer, someone who could give people something to discuss the next day regardless of the outcome on the field. I used to watch old Cubs games in the 80s and I still remember things Harry said but the only on-field action I still recall is Steve Trout throwing loopy curve after loopy curve into the dirt. Have an adult-only section with busty cocktail waitresses bringing drinks and the hot dog guy in a Speedo. Make it FUN. Make it unique. Make it baseball Vegas-style.

Again, baseball needs new thinking if they want to develop new markets. You can't try and sell canned vanilla pudding everywhere.

   77. Traderdave Posted: November 05, 2013 at 12:18 PM (#4594136)
Have an adult-only section with busty cocktail waitresses bringing drinks and the hot dog guy in a Speedo. Make it FUN. Make it unique. Make it baseball Vegas-style.



That would be fun. Once.


   78. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: November 05, 2013 at 12:22 PM (#4594139)
Well you're trying to pull in tourists, it ain't like people saw "Siegfried and Roy" 2 or 3 night a week.
   79. boteman is not here 'til October Posted: November 05, 2013 at 12:32 PM (#4594147)
You want Vegas-style?

Every time EITHER team scores a run, we remove a piece--off a live model up on the DiamondVision screen.
   80. Chone Mueller Posted: November 05, 2013 at 02:37 PM (#4594269)
The A's co-tenants, the Raiders, played their initial AFL home season of 1960 at Candlestick Park (and yes, that year they were named the Oakland Raiders).


According to ballparks.com, the Raiders were in Candlestick in 1961. They began in 1960 in Kezar Stadium, which is also in San Francisco, but has since been demolished and rebuilt with a smaller seating capacity.


The Raiders started 1960 at Kezar Stadium but moved to Candlestick Park for the final three home games of their first season. They played the entire 1961 season at Candlestick Park. Frank Youell Field (at the present site of Laney College in Oakland) was cobbled together as a temporary home for the team while the Coliseum was planned and built. The Raiders played at Youell Field from 1962-1965.
   81. Damon Rutherford Posted: November 05, 2013 at 06:37 PM (#4594576)
I think Indy would do a terrible job of supporting an MLB franchise.

I agree it would be disappointing the first X (> 10 most likely) years. But with each new generation, the children would likely lean toward the home team instead of their parents' teams.

Also, it would help to have a super-duper star or two eventually emerge to "legitimize" the franchise, similar to what Manning (and Harrison, Wayne, etc.) did to the Colts.

But given the growth of the suburbs, I think Indianapolis could succeed long-term with a MLB franchise, despite the complaints from the Cards, Cubs, White Sox, Tigers, and Reds! Why should their little "Crossroads of America" brother get to play with the older siblings?

If MLB expands in the future, and Indianapolis somehow lands a new team, I would hope they would be placed in the same division as the Cubs, Cards, Pirates, Brewers, and Reds. That would be great for all the teams given their proximity. The Astros were too far away for reasonable road trips.

Victory Field's location is reasonable, if not almost ideal. The lack of public transportation from the suburbs to downtown would be a nuisance. I would wager the city could turn Victory Field into a MLB-ready ballpark, at least for the first X years when they'd be struggling for attendance any way. It's a sweet *TV* deal the team would need to survive. I'd finally pay for cable/satellite if I could watch 75+ Indianapolis Clowns games.
   82. Jim Wisinski Posted: November 05, 2013 at 07:05 PM (#4594601)
I do this all the time. There isn't really any traffic going west on 80 past Davis in the afternoons. It's 70 miles of freeway from Sacramento to Richmond BART. BART is 40 minutes to the stadium. All the traffic is between Berkeley and Oakland.


Either I'm misunderstanding or this doesn't make any sense. 70 miles of freeway + 40 minutes on BART = an 80 minute drive?
   83. dr. scott Posted: November 05, 2013 at 07:13 PM (#4594607)
to efficiently commute in the bay area requires bending space time...
   84. theboyqueen Posted: November 05, 2013 at 07:15 PM (#4594611)
Jim Wisinski -- Read the entire post.
   85. tfbg9 Posted: November 05, 2013 at 08:37 PM (#4594654)
A "Vegas" style MLB team is a silly idea. But if they try it, they have to play on a field of green felt.

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