25 October 2007

Chronicle Editorial

With all the hubbub from Ray Ratto's and Carl Steward's columns along with Carolyn Jones' writeup about the Commonwealth Club speech, it may have been easy to miss the Chronicle's editorial on both the 49ers and A's. In assessing the A's situation, the piece says this:
Wolff is only being realistic. While the A's have a colorful history and a vibrant fan base in Oakland, there is neither political will nor a plausible site for a new baseball stadium there. The lack of an uproar to Wolff's remarks should tell him everything he needs to know about the need to focus his energy in Fremont.
Well, there certainly was a mini uproar in the comments section of the Ratto and Jones pieces. Then again, the commenters there tend to rail against anything and everything. In any case, way to tell it like it is, Chron.


Anonymous said... an essfff paper wants to keep a better baseball team than their own nearby. They'll grease the runway again when Fremont fails to become reality

Marine Layer said...

Amazing, isn't it, that the Chronicle continues to send an excellent beat writer to cover the A's, huh?

Let me know where I can send the tin-foil hat.

Anonymous said...

Of course the Chronicle sends a beat writer to cover the A's. They're right across the bridge in Oakland. The Oakland A's are part of the everyday reality of their readership. They really have no choice. It doesn't mean that San Francisco interests wouldn't want to see the A's leave Oakland AND the Bay Area.

Wolff is slowly eliminating options in order for the franchise to one day disappear from the Bay Area. The Chronicle is happy to lend Wolff a hand in his effort to paint himself into a corner. He's already eliminated Oakland and San Jose from the equation. Fremont better do as Wolff says or the Bay Area will be without the A's. How's that for pressure? Fremont better rezone that land quickly or the World will never know where Fremont is and Oakland will be without a baseball team.

Marine Layer said...

They don't have to send a competent, experienced beat writer. If they wanted to marginalize the A's, they could send some fresh-from-college scrub. They could use wire sources. There are far more effective ways to marginalize the A's than writing an editorial.

The ball is in Wolff's court. Nothing happens until he delivers the dev application. Let's see, Fremont has the real leverage because they control the rezoning part and Wolff has to make concessions for them to approve.

And if Wolff's plan is to leave the Bay Area? He'd lose out on all of the Silicon Valley sponsors he's been luring the last several years. He'll have taken Cisco for a ride, leaving them pretty upset. By not making it work, he'll have left a lot of money on the table. He'll also have failed in the first opportunity for the next generation of stadium building, which won't sit well with the commish - who approved him because he was supposed to be a can-do guy.

Moreover, if the purpose is to eventually eliminate the team there are a couple of problems. First of all the current CBA's deadline to announce contraction passed over a year ago. Then there will be the rising price to buy out not one, but two teams (because you can't contract one). Possible price tag: $400-500 million apiece. We all know how much Selig and the owners want to dig into their pockets for that.

Hmmm, none of that fits into your bitter, obsessed worldview. So I must ask again: Where can I send the tin-foil hat?

Jeffrey said...

It's kind of funny... One day Ray Ratto, a noted chronicle columnist, is the smartest man on the planet because he is pointing out that the A's need to stay in Oakland.

The next day the chronicle is part of a conspiracy to help contract the A's or move them to Omaha.

Oh, and have you heard of the San Jose Sharks beat writer at the chronicle? His name is AP Wire. I don't think that means the chronicle would like to contract the Sharks, it does however support the question: where to send that tin foil hat?

Anonymous said...

Wow, another columnist comes out against the fremont plan due to traffic!

...goes on to call it "irresponsible." guess she's yet again another "ill-informed" person, eh???

Jeffrey said...

She is entitled to her opinion. If she thinks because people are buying more hybrid cars that means ti is irresponsible to build a baseball stadium not near BART more power to her.

I disagree. But you already knew that.

Marine Layer said...

Considering the Merc didn't have an article this week on the ballpark, yes. She's simply jumping on the ill-informed bandwagon.

These issues will be negotiated between the city and the team in council chambers, in conference rooms, not in the office of some columnist. If Fremont thought, as many detractors do, that the traffic and transportation issues were intractable, do you think they'd even be at the table right now? Didn't think so.

There will be a traffic and transportation study to review. When that's available everyone - including me - can critique it, rip it to shreds. Until then, the media is just filling space. And getting your eyeballs to look at it, which is what they've wanted all along.

Anonymous said...

"ill-informed" = anything different from my opinion

by marinelayer

Marine Layer said...

I've wrapped up the tin-foil hat in some nice cartoon gift wrap so that you can enjoy opening it, anon.

Anonymous said...

frustration is an oh-so-funny thing to watch.

Marine Layer said... sayeth the crazy conspiracy nut laughing by himself.

If you wait too long I might have to change to Christmas gift wrap.

Anonymous said...

what a pissing match this blog has become.

what a bore.

Jeffrey said...

For argument's sake... what information did Killion put in that particular article that showed any deep understanding of the specific transportation challenges for the site?

It seems the your opinion of "well informed" is anyone who spouts high level arguments and doesn't back them up, as long as they agree with you.

I mean, it's not like Marine Layer has a whole blog full of information on the topic or anything.

Jeffrey said...

I agree it is boring when people type one sentence replies and don't really back up any of their assertions.

This blog rocks. It's the comment section that bites. When a bunch of people who really aren't interested in anything but spouting an opinion and don't have the guts to attach their name to any comments it kind of makes it less likely to have real discussion.

Anonymous said...

Jeffrey, do you understand why the Sharks beat writer is "AP Wire?" It's because the San Jose Sharks are not part of the everyday reality of most Bay Area residents. The Fremont A's will be the next in line for an "AP Wire" beat writer from the Chronicle.

Unfortunately, the A's will become a South Bay franchise, and South Bay sports teams don't seem to resonate much with most Bay Area residents. The Earthquakes have failed many times. San Jose State draws very small crowds even when having winning seasons. Despite all the hoopla about the possibilities in the South Bay, the area has not proven itself as a hot bed for sports enthusiasts.

BTW, what's the tin hat for?

Anonymous said...

Marinelayer, the ball is in Fremont's court now. If Fremont fails to secure a deal with Wolff, Fremont will be responsible for the departure of the A's from the Bay Area. This is Fremont's baby now. You folks will no longer be able to pin the departure of the A's on everything Oakland.

Marine Layer said...

Way to spin the situation, anon! You should work for the Bush administration and their revolving door of spokespeople.

Once again, you're completely wrong. Wolff has to submit the app, then the clock starts ticking. It will be Wolff's willingness to make concessions and abide with regulations that will make or break the deal, not Fremont.

Ignore all the reasons why the team won't leave the Bay Area all you want. They're still true.

Ni Un Paso Atras said...

Not that I'm a big fan of the current occupant of the White House, but one must be careful of not falling into a version of reductio ad Hitlerum (or in this case argumentum ad Bushirum) when baiting your opponents. We may agree to disagree on whether Oakland or Fremont is better for the A's, long term, but I hope we can do so while maintaining a sense of composure about it.

So along that line, I would like to say that I prefer that they find a way to stay in Oakland. When they went to Oakland, they help to recapture some of the prestige that they had when they were the Philadelphia A's (those great teams that had Jimmie Foxx and Al Simmons who could have won the 1927 World Series if not for a team named the Yankees. Ironically, they become the de-facto "farm team" for the Yanks when they were in KC). Oakland is where they became known for fielding competitive and even winning teams without a budget like the Northeast clubs. Oakland does have a certain prestige including with me, a non-California resident.

It would be a shame if they can't work it out in Oakland, long term. However, if push comes to shove, you have to do what's best for most.

Marine Layer said...

Thanks for the note. Once in a while I will get carried away. I find myself getting baited more easily than in the past. Must be restlessness.

One thing I'm really interested in is the museum that was in the original announcement. Since then I haven't heard a thing about it, and I would be extremely disappointed if it weren't included in the plan. A baseball museum requires the blessings of MLB and the BHoF, so there's a political/economic bent there.

Jeffrey said...

Let's see... San Jose State plays in a mid major conference while there are two schools playing football in a major conference, within the same region. One of those, which gets covered galore, is in Santa Clara County (Stanford). Is Santa Clara County not in the South Bay? Is Stanford not covered a great deal by the local media despite sucking horribly?

Second, the NHL is undisputedly the 4th most popular sport in the country (5th if you count NASCAR) and has little interest from the Bay Area public in general. If they were in San Francisco, they would still get the same lack of coverage because they don't sell that many papers.

MLS is not even on the radar. I find it humorous that you equate the lack of interest in the MLS in the Bay Area to the team playing in the Soy

Undoubtedly, the A's and Giants, Warriors, Raiders and 49ers all would get the same amount of coverage and attention they get now if they played in the South Bay.

The problem with the arguments on this site right now are that people, who post anonymously, keep posting very simple arguments to explain complex situations.

Anonymous said...

Stanford is more Peninsula than "South Bay."

Also, if the San Francisco Forty Niners were instead the "San Jose Forty Niners" you better believe that the media coverage would not be what it is. Why do you think the Forty Niners want to keep San Francisco in their name? The Oakland Raiders would also lose some prestige and stature if they were to change their name to San Jose Raiders.

I like San Jose, they've invested a lot of money in cleaning up downtown. Unfortunately, that hasn't translated into much vibrancy after work hours. For some reason, San Jose doesn't have the stature of a city of a million residents. Oakland with 400,000 residents surpasses San Jose in stature in many ways.

Jeffrey said...

So what is the measurement you used to place the value of stature?

Anonymous said...

A waterfront, interesting architecture, historic preservation, walkable and sustainable neighborhoods, great restaurants, interesting topography, a vibrant arts scene, flourishing ethnic neighborhoods, a flourishing arts community, great public transportation, good climate, and a waterfront orientation. All these attributes would provide the stature which in turn would make the city well known Nationally.

Also, if I may add, it's virtually impossible for a land locked city to be considered among the great cities of the United States. There needs to be some sort of waterfront setting. Either, ocean, bay, estuary, lake, or river. Without this relationship to the water a city can not be considered great. All the great cities of the United States have some sort of waterfront orientation.

The attributes listed above are some of the reasons why, in my opinion, the city of Oakland has greater stature than the city of San Jose despite having only about 400,000 residents compared to nearly a million for San Jose.

Jeffrey said...

So in other words... it's just your opinion.

Anonymous said...

It's my opinion based on my travels to every major city in the United States. What is your opinion?

Do you consider San Jose to be one of the great cities in the United States? Also, does the stature of a city or region reflect on its pro franchises?In other words would the A's be affected in a negative way by relocating from Oakland and distancing themselves from any identity to the city?

Jeffrey said...

My opinion is that you are full of yourself.