» MLB COM­MISH WEIGHS IN ON OAK­LAND

Lodi News-Sentinel - - SPORTS - By Jon Becker

Af­ter los­ing the Oak­land Raiders to Las Ve­gas and the Golden State War­riors to San Fran­cisco, Ma­jor League Base­ball com­mis­sioner Rob Man­fred warned Oak­land lead­ers the A’s could be the next team to leave town.

Man­fred threat­ened city of­fi­cials that if Oak­land doesn’t drop its law­suit over the pro­posed sale of Coli­seum land to the A’s, it would risk los­ing the team to Las Ve­gas or some other city.

“He kind of laid down the law,” Oak­land City Coun­cil­man Larry Reid told the Chron­i­cle in a pub­lished re­port Sun­day. “The com­mis­sioner pointed out that Bay Area fans will soon be go­ing to Las Ve­gas to see the Raiders and that un­less things changed, Bay Area fans may be go­ing to Las Ve­gas or else­where to see the A’s as well.”

The A’s ne­go­ti­ated an $85 mil­lion deal to pur­chase Alameda County’s half of 155 acres of Coli­seum land it shares with the city, but last week the City Coun­cil filed a law­suit to stop the sale. The city ar­gued it wasn’t given a real op­por­tu­nity to buy the County’s share of the land, which would give Oak­land the right to de­ter­mine fu­ture use of the prop­erty.

The A’s, though, have said they need to be able to re­de­velop the Coli­seum to help them pay for their pri­vately fi­nanced new sta­dium at Howard Ter­mi­nal. Man­fred shares the A’s opin­ion — the Chron­i­cle re­ported Man­fred feels the Ath­let­ics’ abil­ity to re­de­velop the Coli­seum while build­ing at Jack Lon­don Square is an “all in one” deal.

Man­fred’s threat about base­ball be­ing will­ing to al­low the A’s to leave Oak­land may just be a strong-armed at­tempt to get the A’s back on track to­ward a new ball­park. Af­ter all, the com­mis­sioner has in the past re­jected the idea of the team leav­ing Oak­land, say­ing last year, “I be­lieve that there is not an­other mar­ket in the United States that has the up­side po­ten­tial that Oak­land has, and I think we would re­gret leav­ing Oak­land.”

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