Oakland A may be closer to Las Vegas as home after MLB decision

There’s an expression about being born on third base, which is where Oakland A’s long, drawn-out plan to move to Las Vegas might hang.

If the A’s moved to the Valley, MLB would not charge the struggling franchise an expensive moving fee, a person with knowledge of the situation told the Review-Journal on Monday.

The news came three days before the San Francisco Bay Area Conservation and Development Commission votes on de-designating the Howard Terminal on Oakland’s waterfront for port operations – seen as a crucial step. towards the A’s building a new baseball stadium in the town they’ve called home ever since. 1968.

I’m going to trade 10 Rickey Hendersons and toss a Reggie Jackson rookie card for a James Kaprielian to anyone who thinks the timing of this latest news leak is just a coincidence.

The NFL billed the Raiders $375 million when they moved to Las Vegas; the Chargers and Rams received $645 million each when they moved to Los Angeles, based on the expected increase in franchise value after the relocation.

Not having to pay moving expenses is a bit more fortuitous than finding a $20 bill in the laundry when it comes to the A’s possibly moving to Las Vegas.

He opened what once looked like a crack in the door to an opening so wide even a heavy catcher could fit through.

Darling Offer Part II

A report by newballpark.org in March 2021 – two months before the A’s began looking for a deal in Las Vegas – speculated that MLB’s move surcharge could hit $1 billion to secure the value of its other A’s. franchises.

It just so happens that $1 billion is the projected cost of building a new domed baseball stadium in Las Vegas.

It bears repeating that the A’s chances of receiving the kind of love deal the Raiders got ($750 million in public funding) when they left the moribund Oakland Coliseum in the rearview mirror are far less than theirs. rallying to make the playoffs.

But John Fisher, the frugal owner of the A, could use the savings of $1 billion (or somewhere in that quarter) on relocation costs to build a ballpark himself, or at least offset much of what it will cost.

And then Fisher might think he’s getting the kind of deal in Las Vegas that he’s been asking A’s president, Dave Kaval, to pursue for over a year.

Win-win-win?

With Las Vegas Ballpark only 3 years old and far from smelling of hot dog mustard and spilled beer, the city wasn’t exactly looking for an MLB team when the A’s started coming to the Valley on fact-finding missions.

But would Las Vegas send the Aviators and Finn the Bat Dog packing their bags if it made sense for Las Vegas? You can set your pitch clock on it. Especially considering that the same relocation fee report said it would likely cost around $2 billion to land an expansion team on the road so Commissioner Rob Manfred could achieve his goal of a balanced configuration of 32 teams.

If MLB waives the A’s relocation fee, the only ones to be written off would be the other owners who pocketed a good chunk of the change from the deal.

But if the A’s made significant progress on a new ballpark, regardless of their location, they would no longer be eligible for the grants they receive under the new baseball collective bargaining agreement.

The A’s are expected to pocket 25% of a total revenue share in 2022, 50% in 2023, 75% in 2024 and a full share in 2025.

Depending on how many spectators the Yankees and Red Sox cram into the stands — and how much they’re charged for a giant beer — having the A’s in the books could still be worth something to other owners as part of a setup that paid more than $110 million to less fortunate teams.

No one can guess how it all unfolds. But with the key vote in Oakland on Thursday, the A’s could dance to third base knowing they’re closer to home than they have been in a while.

Contact Ron Kantowski at [email protected] or 702-383-0352. Follow @ronkantowski on Twitter.

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