Manfred Sees Little Hope For A New Oakland Stadium

Las Vegas has no stadium ready to host MLB games.

Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred, doing the dirty work for Oakland Athletics owner John Fisher, because that is how a sports commissioner makes his or her money, said he doesn’t see much hope that Fisher’s business can stay in Oakland much longer. On SiriusXM radio, Manfred explained, “I think the mayor in Oakland has made a huge effort to try to get it done in Oakland. It just doesn’t look like it’s going to happen.” Manfred has sounded the alarm about the Oakland stadium for a long, long time as he tried to apply pressure on Oakland politicians to approve Fisher’s plan to build a “stadium-village” on the Oakland waterfront and then have public money poured into infrastructure that would be needed for the “stadium-village” to become functionable.

Then Manfred praised Fisher for having a backup plan. “I think the A’s have proceeded prudently in terms of exploring the Las Vegas alternative, given the lack of pace in Oakland. I think they have to look for an alternative.” Oakland has been a Major League Baseball problem since 1967 when the American League gave Kansas City Athletics owner Charles O. Finley permission to move to Oakland and creating a two-team market with San Francisco. Before the San Francisco Giants ownership was able to get a ballpark built in the city, the team almost ended up in Toronto in 1976.  In 1980, A’s owner Finley agreed in principle to sell to Marvin Davis, who planned to move the Athletics to Denver. But Oakland and Alameda County blocked the deal. Various owners have tried to get a new Oakland or Fremont or San Jose Athletics stadium built and have failed. San Jose was a problem as the San Francisco Giants control the territory even though voters in the city said no to a Giants stadium. It’s just business.

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FILE – In this Aug. 16, 2020, file photo, lightning forks over the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge as a storm passes over Oakland, Calif.