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Can you say Las Vegas A’s?
Is possible move really about move?
Good morning, all! It’s Friiiddddaaaayyyyy!!!!!
In case you missed it, Major League Baseball gave the Oakland Athletics franchise permission on Tuesday to explore moving the team out of that city, if they cannot reach a deal to build a new stadium. Continuing to prolong the stadium process would be a negative for the franchise, according to MLB.
It has been nearing five years, since A’s ownership has pursued building a new ballpark, with the goal of constructing one in downtown Oakland, but it has been one stumbling block after another for the franchise.
Adding fuel to the fire is Las Vegas Raiders owner Mark Davis, who moved his NFL club from Oakland to Las Vegas last year.
I hate to say it’s expected, but it’s expected. It’s what we went through…the government up there, is just not capable of putting a deal together that’s win-win. And that’s all you ever look for is win-win.
-Raiders owner Mark Davis
Rumors abound, if the A’s move it will be to Las Vegas.
Now MLB is trying to accelerate the process, but I believe Commissioner Rob Manfred’s real goal is to bring about expansion. During an online symposium last week, Manfred, answering what appeared to be a throw-away question, stated if MLB expanded the entry fee for a new franchise would probably be around $2 billion. Manfred has always said, before baseball can expand, it needs to settle the stadium issues of the Athletics and the Tampa Bay Rays. If those two situations can be resolved, Manfred can put expansion on the front burner, where I believe it has been all along.
Think about it. MLB owners took a financial bath because of Covid-19. What better way to replenish the coffers than adding two more clubs for a total of $4 billion? That works out to more than $133 million per team. Adding two clubs would bring the total number of franchises to 32 and pave the way for Manfred two reorganize the two leagues and their unwieldy division alignment. He might even eliminate the American and National Leagues and bring about a total restructuring.
Throw in the fact the commissioner could bring the promise of more jobs to the table, when he starts what is expected to be contentious negotiations with the Players Association over a new working agreement and you have the real reason the commissioner wants to settle the stadium issue. There’s $4 billion sitting out there and baseball ownership and its commissioner want it. They need to recoup their losses.
Can you say Las Vegas A’s?
Mayne no longer the main man
He was a regular on ESPN’s SportsCenter since 1994, but on Monday, Kenny Mayne announced by way of his Twitter feed that he was a “salary cap casualty” and would be leaving ESPN.
Well, word is Mayne was offered a new deal that would have reduced his pay by 61 percent and his work time by 14 percent. Somehow those numbers don’t add up, do they?
Anyway, Mayne is not asking for anyone’s sympathy and he will probably find work elsewhere. He is just the latest casualty in a medium that continues to downsize and/or replace talent with younger talent at much lower salaries. Welcome to our new economy.
Minor League Baseball is back
After 621 days, I got to call my first professional baseball game on Tuesday night, along side the “Voice of the Hartford Yard Goats” and dear friend Jeff Dooley. It was a blast returning to the Yard Goats’ home, Dunkin’ Donuts Park and renewing so many friendships. You don’t realize how much you miss friends and the ballpark environment, until you go nearly two years without it. The city of Hartford took another step toward normal on May 11 and it felt great.
New York’s number is up
Jeremy Pollutro has authored another book about baseball and this one deals with the uniform numbers work by some of the most prominent New York baseball players on the Yankees, Giants, Dodgers and Mets. Over 100 of the greatest players are highlighted. Here is the link. Enjoy!
That is it for this week. Have a terrific weekend and as always, thank you for your support!