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Major League Baseball continues to keep the Athletics in limbo

Dec 2, 2010, 10:06 AM EDT

Oakland Coliseum

We’re pushing two years since baseball said it was “studying” the issue of where the Athletics should play.  Could they find a way around the Giants’ territorial rights in San Jose? Is Oakland, in fact, a viable home for the A’s going forward?  We don’t know!  Because apparently doing some basic economic studies, looking at publicly-available data and having some tough meetings with the owners of the Giants is more complex than the Manhattan Project. Either that or baseball is just sitting on this, hoping the problem solves itself while the A’s fan base continues to become more disillusioned. And to shrink.

Baseball’s inaction is causing more concrete problems too. For example, San Jose had until this past Tuesday to put a stadium initiative on the spring ballot, but that deadline came and went because no one in San Jose wants to stake their political capital on a campaign that baseball could doom by inaction or by choosing Oakland.

At the same time, Oakland stepped up with an actual stadium proposal and a public hearing on the matter the other night that has reignited interest on the part of some Oakland fans. However, the step needed to make the ballpark an actual possibility — and environmental impact assessment — is likely to be put on hold. Why? Because Oakland officials wisely are loathe to spend millions on such a study if baseball is unwilling to commit to the A’s staying in town.

Mr. Selig: get on with it. Your continued inaction on the matter of the Athletics’ future is killing the team. If no deal can be cut with the Giants, pull the plug on Lew Wolff’s designs on San Jose. If Oakland is truly not a viable market for the A’s, say so and do what is necessary to forge a compromise on territorial rights.  You’re supposed to be the leader of this sport. Friggin’ lead for once, will ya?

  1. BC - Dec 2, 2010 at 10:21 AM

    We have a lot of open space, good highway access and plenty of parking next to the UConn football stadium. I’m just sayin’……

  2. tomemos - Dec 2, 2010 at 11:21 AM

    Of all of baseball’s various ditherings, I think this one is the most pathetic.

  3. Detroit Michael - Dec 2, 2010 at 11:26 AM

    The delay really does seem ridiculous. Here’s part one of a recent interview with Lew Wolff:

    • ramsbladdercup - Dec 2, 2010 at 11:45 AM

      Thanks for the link… Good info.

  4. ramsbladdercup - Dec 2, 2010 at 11:31 AM

    Thanks for keeping us up to date on this. I hope Bud is listening.

  5. churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Dec 2, 2010 at 11:46 AM

    You’re supposed to be the leader of this sport. Friggin’ lead for once, will ya?

    Dear Mr. Calcaterra –

    Your ideas intrigue me. I shall now put together a commission to determine the viability of doing this.


    Bud Selig

  6. jkcalhoun - Dec 2, 2010 at 11:46 AM

    Could move them back to Kansas City. David Glass can have the Astros; he goes to more games there than in KC anyway. That leaves the problem of what to do with the Royals. Any suggestions?

    • BC - Dec 2, 2010 at 2:22 PM

      We’ll take them in Hartford.

  7. The Baseball Idiot - Dec 2, 2010 at 11:59 AM

    Doesn’t New Orleans need a team?

  8. tomemos - Dec 2, 2010 at 12:26 PM

    Apparently if Qatar gets the World Cup in 2022, after the tournament it’ll disassemble the stadiums and send them to places that need them. So there’s your solution right there, assuming this mess isn’t settled by 2022, which is seeming likely right now.

  9. monkeyball - Dec 2, 2010 at 1:12 PM

    Letting the franchise wither on the vine makes sense if Bud is going to contract the A’s and the Rays.

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