20 September 2005

News roundup

Some bits of news from here and there....

... but first, I've had this asked of me frequently the last couple of weeks, so I should answer it: I haven't heard anything new regarding stadium plans. In fact, I doubt we'll hear anything significant for the rest of the regular season, and throughout the playoffs for that matter. November is when the business operations side of the team takes precedence over the baseball side, so we should hear more then. After that, the hot stove league starts going, then the winter meetings, free agent signings and trades, and before you know it, April 1 will be upon us.

Two items from the same Matier and Ross column last Saturday:
  • Ex-KNBR program director Bob Agnew has resurfaced to helm Clear Channel AM stations KNEW-910 (right-wingers) and KQKE-960 (left-wingers). Though both are talk stations, both also have sports programming, and it wouldn't be surprising to see the A's on one (or even both) stations next season. Now, if you told me in April that Agnew would be fired and would end up with a competing station with the possibility to broadcast A's games, I know what I would've said.
  • Ron Dellums is expected to announce whether he'll run for the Oakland mayoral position by October 1. The IDLF camp is keeping close tabs on Dellums, who is probably the council president's only significant opposition right now.
From Reuters: Contrary to my previous update on Susquehanna, buyers for the different media properties (radio/cable) may be chosen by the end of the week.

San Diego and Washington are both mulling over ballpark village projects. San Diego is deciding on tall housing towers, which have their opponents in the project's nearby neighbor, the Port of San Diego. Washington is still in the conceptual phase, as there's still disagreement on everything from the orientation of the field to the facade to the height of buildings near the ballpark. Yet the District is contractually obligated to have it open by the beginning of the 2008 season, which is only 29+ months away. Tick tick tick...

That brings us back to the Oakland ballpark situation. If there's going to be any hope of having a ballpark open by the start of the 2009 season, Oakland officials are going to have to make serious progress on the land acquisition and rezoning effort. It's going to be much more difficult in Oakland because of the sheer size of the land to be acquired - 100 acres as opposed to only 20 for the DC project and 7 for the remaining San Diego ballpark village land, which has already been acquired but is going through final approval.

Chip Johnson's column on the Hegenberger Wal-Mart notes that something is being planned for the HomeBase (Coliseum South) location. I'm trying to find out more about this.

Attendance last night was an abysmal 15,262, and don't think that Wolff, who was in the audience last night, didn't notice. To reach last season's attendance total, the A's will have to average over 34,000 per game for the rest of the homestand. I'm doing my part by going tonight and I'm bringing coworkers tomorrow for an "offsite team building session." People, let's get out there!


Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Not that this would solve anything, but has anyone ever commissioned a survey or poll to ask why more people don't go to A's games? For sure, we lack a strong season ticket base to "pump up" our numbers, but the fact is despite our recent success, we've kind of leveled off at about 2.2 mil, when I know that during the Haas regime we surpassed that several times.

The biggest tangible difference between then and now is that we made three straight trips to the World Series between 88 and 90, which coincides with the high attendance period.

It can't be said enough that the Bay Area fans are spolied. Between all the A's World Series appearances, the 49'ers past glories, and the occaisional times that the Raiders and Giants get to the "big stage", we've come to expect a winner; and not just a division title.

The Giants at SBC were lucky enough to hit the timing of Barry Bonds, Pac Bell opening, and the dot-com boom all at once. But like the dot-coms, I think they're due for a "market correction" very soon. which point we're gonna hear the old argument about the Bay Area being unable to support two teams again.