Somewhere out there A’s owner Lew Wolff is probably howling in despair and furiously pulling his hair out.
All the man wants to do is move the ballclub to San Jose but Major League Baseball, the Giants and the city of Oakland keep getting in the way.
What’s a rich old man obsessed with a new stadium in the South Bay to do?
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t have a major problem with the guy but he’s consistently mishandled the public relations side of his ballpark quest and alienated fans.
Want to take bets that he’s going to bitterly dismiss this new, potentially promising development in Oakland? How long before he throws his hands up in the air and petulantly puts the team up for sale if he’s forced to keep the A’s in the East Bay?
If that happened would it be a bad thing? Maybe not. Any chance that filthy rich Larry Ellison wants a consolation prize after losing out in his bid to buy the Golden State Warriors?
It has to be wildly frustrating to be in Wolff’s shoes, eagerly hoping you may finally be getting close to having a favorable decision made by Major League Baseball on San Jose only to have Oakland’s mayor-elect Jean Quan mess things up.
I’d love to see the team stay in Oakland and if the city’s politicians are finally ready to step up to the plate to try and make that happen I’m all for it. It’s about time.
But does Quan have the clout to make a ballpark happen? I have my doubts and I suspect Oakland has better things to do with its time and money than pursue a baseball stadium.
Do I get the feeling that a new ballpark in Oakland is going to materialize and that it will turn the team’s fortunes around? As much as I want to say yes I can’t honestly say that I buy into the idea that Oakland is going to work out for the A’s over the long haul.
Maybe a new ballpark in Jack London Square will always draw in loads of corporate money and season ticket holders. Maybe there will be sellouts from opening day through the last home game of the season and the A’s will finally be able to afford to keep their homegrown stars.
It could happen and I hope it pans out. I think this offseason and the next couple of years will have a lot to do with whether the A’s will be able to fill a new stadium in the East Bay with passionate die-hard season ticket holders and the casual bandwagon fans you need to keep the cash rolling in.
But for some reason I don’t think the money is there to make that a reality for more than the first few years of the new ballpark when it will be a trendy place for people to check out. I don’t have any hard facts to base that on, just a Kuato-like gut feeling that San Jose and the South Bay now has more going for it to sustain a Major League Baseball team for generations if Wolff ever gets the green light to move the A’s.
If Major League Baseball tells Wolff that relocating to San Jose will never happen and he has to play ball with Oakland I really hope it works out. There’s nothing I would enjoy more than going to the team’s first Opening Day in a new ballpark in Jack London Square to see the A’s start a new chapter in their long, proud history.
Like a lot of A’s fans I’m tired of the seemingly never-ending waiting game to learn the team’s fate. The sooner baseball commissioner Bud Selig gets off his indecisive butt and makes a call on the A’s the better off everyone will be.