College roomate is in town from Europe this weekend. This time of year is super busy for me personally, because family and friends all take their summer vacations. Keep that in mind the next time you think being a baseball writer is the most glamorous job in the world. Baseball’s steadiness prevents any real vacation during the summer.
Anyway, that rant was just to point out that I didn’t the see the A’s play the Red Sox last night. But I “saw” all I needed to see when my cousin Amy, who lives in Connecticut, texted me with the message: 11 hits, 1 run? They do stink.”
Says it all don’t you think?
Incidentally, real quick. Don’t mistake my empathy for the difficulties Lew Wolff faces with the ballpark for a compassion about his ownership. It’s been one of the worst we’ve ever seen in the Bay Area. The Steve Schott Era didn’t start out wonderfully, either, though, so keep that in mind.
My first baseball memories are of growing up in Alameda during the A’s heyday of the 1970s (Vida Blue’s son was on my tee-ball team). I had season tix during the Bash Brother glory days of the 1980s (to this day, I’ve never seen anybody, not even Barry Bonds, dominate a full season the way Jose Canseco did in 1988). I was there for Rickey’s record-breaker in 1991. I covered The Streak in 2002.
In other words, I go back a long way with this team. And I bring this up, because Lew Wolff left me with the sad feeling that there may not be many more seasons for the A’s in Oakland.
Wolff and I discussed the A’s attendance situations, and I turned the subject to that of Cisco Field, and what he said wasn’t encouraging. And if Cisco Field isn’t built, that would leave the A’s without much choice other than to move. I discussed that option with Wolff, too, but that part of our conversation was off the record, so I’m not privileged to share it. What I can tell you is that without a new stadium, the options become these: The A’s move. Wolff sells. Or both.
Personally, I think Wolff is in a tough spot. He got annoyed when I suggested that it would be impossible to ask fans to help with a stadium, especially with the current economy, and he insisted the A’s have never asked for a dime. He didn’t say that they don’t intend to do so. That, and the bureacracy is takes to get projects completed stacks the odds against Wolff succeeding in this vision, and if he doesn’t succeed, nobody else will, either.
Perhaps the best solution for the A’s would be for the Raiders to high-tail it out of here. Then they could pour money into renovating the place, the way the Angels did with their home. Nobody remembers that the Big A was as much of an eye-sore and revenue-sucker as the Coliseum now is.
I can also tell you this. As long as the A’s stay in their current home, don’t get too attached to any ne player. But then, you probably knew that already.