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Wolff wants to keep the A's in Oakland

OAFC BBS - All Topics: Archive: Wolff wants to keep the A's in Oakland
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By oaktownmojo on Friday, January 14, 2005 - 09:38 am:

This article seems encouraging. He could be lying but I will take him at his word for now.

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=1966217

Los Angeles developer Lewis Wolff, who has an option to buy the Athletics, wants to get a baseball-only stadium in Oakland instead of moving the team to San Jose.


"He's totally focused on the Oakland situation and seeing that through," Sam Spear, a senior consultant for the A's, said Thursday.


Wolff, vice president for venue development for the Athletics, said he will make his decision whether to buy the team from Steve Schott and Ken Hofmann in the next three months.


Wolff, who was hired by the Oakland Athletics in 2003 to help find a new stadium, had an introductory meeting Wednesday with members of baseball's ownership committee in Scottsdale, Ariz., to brief them on his longterm vision for the A's.


Any sale agreement must be approved by at least three-quarters of the 30 major league teams, a process that usually takes 6 to 12 months.


Speculation that Wolff might try to move the A's to San Jose has met with opposition from San Francisco Giants owner Peter Magowan. The Giants have territorial rights to the San Jose area, and commissioner Bud Selig indicated Wednesday that owners are not likely to give ground.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By rayfossefan on Friday, January 14, 2005 - 11:29 am:

This was in yesterday's Chronicle. While all of you were comparing conspiracy theories, I was saying, didn't you read what Wolff said?! Amazing.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By rocket on Friday, January 14, 2005 - 11:46 am:

RFF,
Schott said basicly the same thing when he bought
the team, but when he was sued, it came out he
was actually working from the start to move the
team to SJ. That is why it is not amazing some fans are not accepting Wolff's statement at face value.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By diamond_lil on Friday, January 14, 2005 - 12:31 pm:

RFF,

Please try to realize some of us have been following this relocation issue from the very start. And even though wishfull thinking makes some of us tend to trust and look at things through rose colored glasses, it is important to remain suspicious of those who have lied and deceived so frequently in the past.

Here's just one little tidbit of information you may want to read about Wolff's past history on the issue at hand:

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/chronicle/archive/2003/11/14/SPGCA31U1P1.DTL

In 1985, Wolff was involved in an ill-fated plan to build a $130 million baseball stadium in San Jose in hopes of attracting the San Francisco Giants. In 1998, he suggested that the A's build a new ballpark in San Jose.

"If I was going to pursue a ballpark, I would certainly do it in San J0se, " he said at the time. "It's the difference between a big-league city and a non-big-league city. I wouldn't spend five minutes on any other city besides San Jose."

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By diamond_lil on Friday, January 14, 2005 - 12:49 pm:

"He's totally focused on the Oakland situation and seeing that through," Sam Spear, a senior consultant for the A's, said Thursday.

Sam Spear is another one very suspect, with a very biased agenda. He was hired by Schott as his personal PR guy and was also actively lobbying for the A's relocation to San Jose.

Sam Spear's quotes and statements have the validity of Schott's statements. Take that for what it's worth.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By oakfan on Friday, January 14, 2005 - 01:00 pm:

"He's totally focused on the Oakland situation and seeing that through," Sam Spear, a senior consultant for the A's, said Thursday.


That statement only says that the focus is try to make things work in Oakland (seeing that through). It is not a commitment to staying in Oakland.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By vinnieangelo on Friday, January 14, 2005 - 01:06 pm:

If I had just became part owner of a MLB team...One who HAD owners who the fan base was already pissed off with, I wouldnt start off by saying "the teams gona move".

Wolff is going to give the 'wine and dance' for the first few months....When he decideds to trade Zito in the 3rd week of the season, he will blame it on the former owner....He will probably screw us on a few other things (also blaming it on the old ownership).

Then, he will try to reclocate in a few years (Vegas.....Portland...) and still blame it on the old owners.

I am at a point in pro sports, where I do not believe what anyone says (owners....players...agents...media.....managers....the guy at the Budwieser booth)...


I believe when I see...There is nothing more in life that I want to see, then the A's stay in Oakland...But unless Walter Hass himself comes back to buy the team...I cant say I believe it will happen...

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By diamond_lil on Friday, January 14, 2005 - 01:28 pm:

And I know for a fact that Wolff has had several meetings with city officials and it was Wolff who communicated the intention of the team to "pitch in" $100 mil towards a ballpark etc...but there are many creative ways to contribute $100 mil...some of which not very helpful to funding...

they've kept these meetings very secretive, behind closed doors... and I as a fan, having the interest to know whether or not there is something being done between the city and the A's, have to rely on some of the mediots who make statements like Monte Poole (paraphrase) 'the A's offer of $100 mill has met with silence from the city officials'.

However, I have some sources that I can trust and I know for a fact there have been meetings...as recent as this past week with serious (at least from the city's point of view) discussions for developing a viable plan for both parts for the ballpark.

It is the secrecy of the meetings that worries me because when I read "He's totally focused on the Oakland situation and seeing that through," Sam Spear, a senior consultant for the A's, said Thursday. I feel it leaves the door wide open for the same Sam Spear to say, Wold tried, offered to pitch in but the city never showed they really wanted to keep the team.

The OAFC has been present at many of the city and civic leader's meetings and we know for a fact there are plenty of corporate and political people ready to help make this project work. The missing link has always been the presence of the A's. And I never saw Monte Poole present at any of those meetings either...unfortunalely the representative of the Oakland Trib who was present has been recently been replaced. Bummer...

btw, political partisanship aside, I can also vouch for the fact that DLF has been very active, showing great positive, creative interest in making the ballpark project work.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By tekgraf on Friday, January 14, 2005 - 05:47 pm:

Thanks, Lil.

If anyone knows what truly is going on, it's you. I think Lew Wolff is sincere when he states he is still working with Oakland and that the SJ plan is not real. I also believe that MLB isn't going to move a team to an existing territory, such as the Giants. Nor is MLB going to LV. No, I believe Oakland is the only place for the A's and Wolff.

I've heard Rick Quan say that the parking lot deal is dead, but I remember Wolff talking about that plan just a few weeks ago. So, again, I know that you probably have all the poop.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By diamond_lil on Friday, January 14, 2005 - 06:32 pm:

I wish I could say I truly know what is going on.
Unfortunately I can't say that. They are keeping things very hush-hush...

But I do know there are many devoted people committed and diligently working to keeping the team in Oakland.

I don't know whether the parking lot location is dead or not..but I do know the powers to be are looking at other sites other than the parking lot...
remember that Oakland has a 19-mile waterfront, much of it is locked up by the Port of Oakland's shipping operations and Oakland International Airport but there are other options and sites to work with...

one positive thing I see for moving away from the coli parking lot is that it would also move away from the politics of the JPA which would be great...

but like I said,,,can't name names of sources but I'm really not really hiding any info...believe me.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By mroakland on Friday, January 14, 2005 - 08:45 pm:

Lil,

If the A's and city are still looking at various sites in Oakland I have a suggestion. How about ten acres of the most picturesque real estate owned by the City of Oakland. I'm talking about Children's Fairyland.

I Know it's just a fairytale. But think of the possibilities of a quaint ballpark set in a park like setting in a high density middle class neighborhood located about a 450 ft drive over water to the Kaiser Center. This would be the most scenic setting for a ballpark anywhere in the country. It would of course come with its own "splash hit" into Lake Merritt.

This is purely from a selfish baseball fan, and Oakland fan point of view.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By eyleenn on Friday, January 14, 2005 - 09:05 pm:

I don't live in Oakland and I've only been to Fairyland once a long time ago, but isn't that place pretty much sacred ground in Oakland? Seems sacrilegious to suggest replacing it with a ballpark.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By mroakland on Friday, January 14, 2005 - 09:22 pm:

You're right eyleenn. This would never fly. But from a purely selfish baseball fan point of view I can't think of a better place. Also we could always relocate Fairyland to another area of the park.

I mean could you picture the necklace of lights glimmering from Lake Merritt with Oakland's skyline in the background. Also a brand new Catholic Cathedral is going up right across the lake from Fairyland. This location would be like a cross between Wrigley Field in Chicago and Keezar Stadium in SF. Think about this impossible Fairytale.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By deajay on Friday, January 14, 2005 - 10:11 pm:

Lake Merritt. The very first place I can recall living, as a 2 yr old child ... apt. bldg. across from Lake Merritt. How fitting to have a ballpark in that area. Alas, it is likely a fairytale, indeed.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By diamond_lil on Saturday, January 15, 2005 - 09:53 am:

The thought of an urban ballpark was attractive because it would have given an opportunity for folks to come into Oakland to see all the many beautiful parts of that city which are totally hidden behind misconceptions and biased misinformation.

There is so much involved in finding a site for a ballpark, especially when cost effectiveness and mass transportation should be the most important factors to consider.

My feeling is that they have chosen two sites and are now in the process of working on the financing and funding of the project by weighing their options of both sites.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By mroakland on Saturday, January 15, 2005 - 10:54 am:

Absolutely, It has to be cost effective. That's why I don't think the parking lot site would be the best the city or the A's could do.

The city of Oakland and the Oakland A's need to think in a big way. They need to build a ballpark in a site and in a manner which will capture the attention and imagination of Bay Area residents.

The A's need to build a unique ballpark in an inspirational setting in order to assure success and maxmize returns to both the Oakland A's, and the City of Oakland. Both parties need to think out of the box and reach for the stars. No more nickle and diming. Oakland and the A's need to make a statement!

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By eyleenn on Saturday, January 15, 2005 - 12:08 pm:

There's no question that access is not a problem at the Coli site, but I could see casual fans shrugging their shoulders and saying "So what? Another stadium in the same place."

Whereas a downtown park would indeed be an attraction all over the Bay Area.

"No more nickel and diming." Show some vision and creativity, dammit.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By mroakland on Saturday, January 15, 2005 - 01:24 pm:

I love it eyleenn. There's nothing like a little righteous indignation on the part of long suffering Oakland A's fans. And why shoudn't we be indignant and demand something special for one of the greatest franchises in the history of MLB.

It's time Mr. Wolf step up to the plate and do something for this franchise and the wonderful city of Oakland. Stop panhandling the city. After all, Mr. Wolf is a multi millionaire and a long time developer.

Mr Wolf has the opportunity and the ability to make a historical contribution to the community by incorporating the wonderful and unique assets which the City of Oakland offers into a ballpark which will become part of the legacy and lore of the Oakland A's.

Build Athletics Field and cement your trust and commitment in the community and watch this community embrace you and your team as our own.

Panhandling, extortion, corporate wellfare, and deception won't work. Do the right thing. If you feel the current venue is not good enough, then build something that you and the community can be proud of. Create a sense of ownership for all loyal A's fans. Let us rest and enjoy our team in the confort and security of knowing that they are indeed ours. Anyhting less and you will not succeed.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By deajay on Saturday, January 15, 2005 - 02:38 pm:

I couldn't agree more. The coli parking lot is simply a consideration if that is the ONLY consideration. But the smart move would be to put the park where both merchants and fans can take pride, as well as the city. This franchise has been nickel and dimed enough, it's time to step up to the plate and not only build a new stadium but one which makes a statement. Creative financing with the cooperation of ownership can make this happen.

Furthermore, given the personnel of the two franchises (Giants & A's) ... the West Bay geriatric ward doesn't have a longterm window on the future; the A's do. A new park, a franchise seemingly full of young viable prospects and within 5 years ... if not sooner ... the A's will be outdrawing the Giants again ... easily.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By jeffreyb on Saturday, January 15, 2005 - 04:23 pm:

Ratto sez it all in one sentence on ESPN.com today:

"..., the A's are about to be sold to Lewis Wolff, and it is easier to move a business with low overhead than one with a high one."


http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/columns/story?columnist=ratto_ray&id=1966083

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By diamond_lil on Saturday, January 15, 2005 - 05:45 pm:

I read that too, but I thought what he meant was to move from one ownership to another and not physically move team. Maybe I misinterpreted ratboy which woudn't be anything new nor the first time.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By deajay on Saturday, January 15, 2005 - 10:03 pm:

Was that the Sabean/Beane column? That was one of the most pathetic columns I've ever read; it said absolutely nothing. I kept waiting for him to make some points. He never did. It was clearly one of those, "I've got to write a column to meet the deadline", so he threw a bunch of words together. And he thinks he has more inside info/knowledge on trades than the GMs in the game? It was really a pathetic effort which would been better off if he'd left it blank. Oops, come to think of it ... he did. :(

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By diamond_lil on Sunday, January 16, 2005 - 09:21 am:

I know some don't agree, but I still believe the Hudson/Mulder trade was a salary dump and if it wasn't, the A's did not replace them for the value they warranted.

All this theorizing of how the A's were going to lose them...or Hudson would not re-sign... or
Mulder and Hudson are damaged goods...
or now the A's future is so much brighter...

are just as much rationalization or wishfull thinking as the theory the trade was a salary dump to make the team more palatable for a sale.

So Ratto's column is just another opinion by a writer. No big deal.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By 5thtimethecharm on Wednesday, January 26, 2005 - 11:35 am:

It all depends on whether Mulder's meltdown last year and Huddy's oblique injury are signs of terminal decline, or whether, regardless of what happens, Billy and David believed Mulder and Hudson would tank.

I'm still baffled by Mulder's kerosene-on-bonfire performance at the tail end of last year. Time will tell.

BTW, I looked up the data on Haren's ML debut, 6/10/04: 3 2/3 IP, 10 H, 3 BB, 10 ER. Ouch!

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By rayfossefan on Wednesday, January 26, 2005 - 01:32 pm:

Don't you remember when Mulder first came up, and tanked up 10 runs to the Rangers in Arlington?

Piitchers are often shaky on their ML debut's... except Hudson, because that guy is nails...

and even if Huddy is "damaged" he has the heart and soul to fight through anything pretty much (except that injury in the 2003 playoffs!)

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of pageLink to this message   By 5thtimethecharm on Wednesday, January 26, 2005 - 10:31 pm:

I totally agree about rookie pitcher debuts, RFF. That's why I think it's a mistake that so many of us have written off Jairo Garcia.

I just thought that 10 runs in less than 4 innings was one helluva Baptism By Fire.


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