Baseball’s Oakland Task Force meets with the mayor

Usually in extortion cases, the party doing the extorting doesn’t meet with the victim until after all of the damning information is assembled. They must do it differently in California:

A committee formed by the commissioner of Major League Baseball to study the Oakland A’s stadium dilemma met for the first time with Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums and other city officials Tuesday morning.

“It was an excellent meeting,” Dellums said afterward. “We’ve begun an excellent dialogue. We’ve agreed to meet on a regular basis and our hope is that we will come to some fruition at some point down the line. … Obviously, on our side, we want to keep the Oakland A’s.”

Does anyone have any faith whatsoever that the marching orders of that committee aren’t to come up with a document which paints baseball in Oakland as an essentially doomed enterprise? If I were Dellums I’d tell them to pound salt. At the very least I’d jack the rents up to the stratosphere when the A’s lease on Oakland Coliseum expires in 2010. They gotta play somewhere, so no sense in not making a few extra bucks off the team that’s been openly disrespecting you for some time now and no doubt intends to bolt at the first opportunity.

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  1. dtro said...

    Not apropos of this post, but the prior one, but I figured this one could use a comment.

    As a Mets fan all I can say is that watching my boys play the Marlins, especially in that empty football stadium in the rain, always puts me in a foul mood too.

  2. Pete Toms said...

    Craig, I am much less convinced that San Jose is a slam dunk.  The key is the Raiders.  If the Raiders and 49ers move to Santa Clara I think there is a possibility that the Coliseum can can be converted in to a “baseball only” facility a la the stadium in Anaheim.  I’ve read that this may be on HOK’s radar…

    2 advantages for this plan.  Cheaper – by quite a bit I think – than building from scratch.  Significant because this is a tough, tough time to get financing and Woolf will certainly have to put up some of the money himself.  Second, doesn’t the Coliseum have excellent highway and BART access?

  3. APBA Guy said...

    Pete-yes on the transportation and costs. Good freeway access, Bart is a short walk away. Both are issues almost everywhere else in the South Bay, and will add considerably to the cost of a new stadium.

    Problem is, the Santa Clara moves are still not solid. SF Mayor Newsom, in between campaign stops (for governor) coninues to meet with the Yorks to get them and the 49’ers to stay within or much closer to SF. Al Davis is extremely difficult to deal with, so progress there is very slow.

    If KC is any indication, the cost of a remodel is about 40% of a new stadium, and can be completed much more quickly. The A’s have a huge stadium lot which could easily accommodate construction vehicles and still provide sufficient space for game day traffic.

    But as long as the Raiders are there, this is a non-starter.

  4. Craig Calcaterra said...

    It’s also worth noting that Wolff (to my knowledge anyway) has shown zero interest in such a plan, and I don’t think he’s ever mentioned it as something he’d want to do.  I’m not sure why the city should bit against itself in plans to do a makeover if the Colliseum if there isn’t any buy-in from Wolff. 

    Ultimately, Wolff is a real estate guy and probably wants real estate to be a big part of whatever ends up going down as opposed to merely a nice ballpark. I can’t feature real estate being a component of any plan at the current site, even though I think an Angels-style rehab would represent the best baseball option by far.

  5. Ryan said...

    Dellums hasn’t the spine to tell anyone anything.

    San Jose may be a tough fight for Wolf, as the SF Giants legal position is actually fairly strong.

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