Manfred To Oakland Do The Right Thing

Get that money into John Fisher’s hands.

Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred has declared July 20th as the drop-dead date for Oakland to come up with hundreds of millions of dollars to make John Fisher happy. Why July 20th? That is when Oakland elected officials will decide if they want to help fund Fisher’s Oakland Athletics baseball stadium-village concept. Apparently, Fisher, the Athletics owner, wants this done pronto and is willing to hide behind the huffing and puffing Manfred. “John Fisher and Major League Baseball has done everything humanly possible to get a stadium built in Oakland,” Manfred told the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. “At the point in time that you come to the conclusion that it can’t get done, whether you like the market or not, you have to find someplace else to play because you need a facility. It’s that simple.” Actually, it is not that simple. Taxpayers’ dollars are involved but MLB doesn’t really care about taxpayers or fans. They just want taxpayers’ money and if Oakland says no, then there is Las Vegas. And moving to Las Vegas is not a bluff according to Manfred.

The ballpark has been a problem for decades for various A’s owners. In 1977-78 Charles Finley, who took his Kansas City A’s to Oakland in 1967 and signed a 20-year lease agreement, could not complete a sale to Marvin Davis who would have moved the team to Denver. More than two decades ago, another set of owners wanted a new stadium. Then Lew Wolff tried to move the team to Fremont, California and San Jose. Wolff also wanted to build a stadium-village on the Oakland Coliseum property.  In 2019, Manfred turned up the heat on Oakland officials saying that without a new stadium, A’s owners could move. The ballpark saga in Oakland continues or in Las Vegas and maybe in other cities.

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