31 October 2009

Owner vs. Pwner

The Merc's Tracy Seipel profiled the owners of the Bay Area's two MLB franchises, noting their differing personalities and careers. For the sake of brevity, I'll get down to nitty gritty:
Asked to characterize his negotiating style, he said, "I believe the best outcome is when everybody wins a little bit of something."
But some wonder whether Wolff, at 73, will have the endurance to find yet another location for the team if he can't move to San Jose.
"He's spent a lot of time and money in Fremont and time in Oakland" looking for a stadium site, noted one person who has worked with Wolff. "He's got to be thinking, 'How long do I have to wait for this?'"
Both Wolff and Neukom may know more in a few weeks when they attend an MLB owners' meeting in Chicago. League officials said it's unknown whether the territorial topic will be on the meeting's agenda.
But there is no rule against deal-making during breaks — or afterward. Both men say they're not lobbying their fellow owners.
It's been known for some time that Bill Neukom has made his name as an adversarial figure at times, while people who have met and dealt with Lew Wolff frequently mention how affable he is. Do those contrasting styles mean anything in the long run? Probably not. If there's an overarching principle that guides the owners and Bud Selig, it's "follow the money." Whatever the numbers say will dictate how this whole thing turns out.

Speaking of turning out, I've been told that the A's/Quakes are now members of the powerhouse Silicon Valley Leadership Group. Sure enough, they are. Then again, so are the San Jose Giants.

A new pro-move site has been launched called Pro Baseball for San Jose.

Finally, an update from Thursday's Good Neighbor Meeting. It was a healthy discussion of traffic, mostly pertaining to the ballpark use. Talk of specific numbers was impossible because of the botched traffic projections identified earlier. Many committee members were concerned about the City's arena parking permit program, which could be expanded once a ballpark was built. It isn't so much the on street protection, which was welcomed, it was the cost associated with obtaining a permit. They felt that affected residents shouldn't bear any of the cost to implement or maintain the program, which is fair. If anything, revenue from parking tickets should cover the entire cost. Some residents are able to get free permits at this time. The committee also accepted a "Framework for Implementation," a set of guidelines that govern how the committee arrives at a consensus on individual discussion topics and carries them forward to the City Council.


Tony D. said...

Hey, I thought the MLB Committee wasn't going to talk to SJ officials? NICE! By the way, no more threats or harsh rhetoric from Neukom...NICE! Your right R.M., in the end it will all be about THE DEAL $$$ and what's best for MLB.

FWIW, It makes sense for the Lil Giants to be members of the SVLG because, well, they actually play here. And their membership probably predates the Big Giants investment in them.


Mr Blackwell said...

Carl Guardano, head of the SVLG, often wears short pants to work and to SJ City Council hearings.
I believe that the SLVG pays him more than $400k/year.

Anonymous said...

Fallback for Lew if SJ doesn't happen for one reason or another? JLS. I think it would be a great investment if the exact location can be worked out.

Marine Layer said...

Guardino is an avid bike rider and enthusiast. He often goes to City events like the press conference several weeks ago on a bike. Can't fault him for wearing shorts for that.

Anonymous said...

Fallback for Wolff? Current coliseum ... renovated when Raiders leave ... much better for transportation and less dollars.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Wolff is definitely looking for more of the same at the industrial parking lot...

Jeffrey said...

The change in tone by Bill Neukom is pretty interesting. I remember him inferring a law suit on Greg Pappa's lame ass Chronicle Live back at the beginning of the season.

It is an interesting development.

I also had read that Lew Wolff was asked about "moving into the Giants backyard" at one point. If the Giants aren't lobbying, then what the heck?

Lastly, I wish there was an Oakland plan to review. It'd be cool to at least see the dream.

Anonymous said...

MLB will never, I repeat, never allow the A's to move from Oakland to San Jose. This is because the San Francisco Giants have territorial rights to Santa Clara County, which San Jose falls in. The can of worms such a move would open is enormous. Consider:

1) All the Silicon Valley corporations that support the Giants and fans of the Giants in San Jose would easily switch over to the A's. This will hurt the Giants financially way to much, and MLB doesn't want to see the Giants hurt.

2) It would open the door for other MLB teams to invade the territory's of other teams. For example, the Rays could then be free to leave Tampa Bay and build a stadium right across the street from the new Yankees Stadium. Or the Marlins could abandon their Miami plans and build a ballpark in LA or Chicago. Other MLB owners/teams don't want other teams invading their city's/territories. The negative scenarios for MLB are endless with an A's move to San Jose.

This is why the A's should never move to San Jose. The Giants should have the Bay Area all to themselves, while the A's should be moved to Sacramento, Las Vegas, San Antonio or Portland.

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Haha, looks like someone just found the blog...

Anonymous said...

ahhh--Neukom or Baer are anonymous bloggers on here---even anon 3:42 softened his stance as he wrote his comments--going from never...never at the beginning to "should not be allowed to" move into San Jose--

LeAndre said...

Anon: 3:42,

Believe me when I say...your preaching to the choir. So much in fact, that I don't think any of us will have the energy or the will to legitimately respond to your comment

Jeffrey said...

I will LeAndre...


Hogwash! You clearly don't know anything about Territorial Rights and how they are assigned.

Regardless of what you think, each market is defined by MLB and can be changed by MLB at anytime with a 3/4's majority of the owners vote. Changing one market, doesn't mean any other markets will likewise be affected.

You can read about the actual rules that define territorial rights at Maury Brown's biz of baseball site. There is a link on the front page.

Also, in this case, if the A's do move south (and stay within the same market they already occupy by pretty much all measures but MLB's) it will be as the result of a negotiated agreement prior to the move.

In those other two team markets you mention, the territories for both the AL and NL teams are identical. A case could be made that this two team market should be similarly defined. Considering the San Jose's corporate base isn't really all that big of a supporter of the Giants, that argument is pretty lame. You can go to Yahoo, Google or Bing and search for the recent Silicon Valley Leadership Group study conducted to validate corporate support information, or you can just go look at it right here.

And before you respond with a "you are a San Jose homer" retort, you should know I am not partial to where the A's play (I live in Pleasanton). I have said on this blog numerous times that staying in Oakland is fine by me, as long as it isn't in the Coliseum or it's parking lot.

The challenge for Oakland is that there is no plan, meanwhile San Jose could start building next in April if MLB changed the definition of the local market.

Anonymous said...

LeAndre--not sure what "choir" you are referring to---most on here seem to have reached the point that when ridiculous posts like anon 3:42 appear that they are ignored rather than debated-since they lack any factual support-

Anonymous said...

I agree with anon 3:42 as well ... so let's see now who's in the minority. based on a's attendance, it's not hard to see. a's have very few fans period.

Anonymous said...

This whole process is a deadly sin. Sloth.

LeAndre said...

Anon 9:04,

The previous Anon was making a case for T-Rights as if it was something new, not knowing that we are all aware of it to say the least...thats what I meant by "choir"

I'm not agreeing with him once so ever...If SJ doesnt go through, it won't be because of T-Rights, wait we all know that already...darn

You are a very noble man my friend