So much for cronyism as providing a means for the A's owner to have any influence on his fraternity pal Bud Selig in getting a deal for the A's and their aspirations to move to San Jose. Not that we would ever, as A's fans want favors from a former used car dealer anyway. Be careful of the company you keep...you might end up not being distinguished from them in the long run. How are we to interpret Mr. Selig's comments that the A's can move wherever they want.
Asked whether the A's might consider leaving Northern California altogether, he said they could go anywhere that would win approval from the other owners.
"They could be all over the world, for that matter," Selig said.
How are we to interpret these comments?
Mr. Selig has been known to work behind the scenes to gather a consensus for any issue that he sees fit. We have seen that this has been effective for most of the changes in MLB for well over a decade and some consider him to be an effective commissioner. In this case, we take his comments to mean that he hasn't, can't or is unwilling to try.
What's the deal with Oakland? In the eyes of the professional media, the A's are a...joke, embarrassment, black-eye, laughing stock, to many. But doesn't this reflect poorly on the "haves" in the league who cringe when Beane calls asking for a certain player. "Don't deal with Beane, you don't want to be screwed by a guy running a team on the budget of what we pay for our toilet paper, do you?"
"Damn, he just beat us again..."
Yet the uniqueness of Bay Area baseball and its contributions is something that the other owners can't ignore. One of MLB's greatest franchises is left out to showcase an identity that currently is worse than when it was seen as nothing more than a farm team for the New York Yankees in the 1950s. Never mind 4 World Series titles and numerous division championships under 3 different owners. Instead we are left with the legal tangle of believing that somehow the Giant's "own" a territory more than 150 miles away from their location (Southern Monterey County). MLB is proving that feudalism still exists. Never mind the disenfranchised A's fans throughout the Bay Area and Monterey County because the Giants "own" us.
Is it time? Is it time to challenge the the antiquated Anti-trust Exemption that Judge Kennesaw Mountain Landis was able to gain in the 20's. Does it really apply today? I suppose for the reactionary group of MLB owners headed by Larry Baer it does. It's a piece of ....you know what...in all practicality.
Other major league sports such as football and basketball have evolved. Just look at how the league thrives with teams sharing the same venues. Think NY and LA. Are those leagues and teams suffering? Hardly. But our A's are. Despite Selig's sly move of making teams pay the A's a goodly portion of revenue sharing as part of the latest collective bargaining agreement until, I believe 2018, we are all led to believe that there aren't 21 other teams that wound not approve of the A's moving 45 miles away from where the Giants call home.
What can we do? Probably just sit back and watch our "David" attempt to slew the "Goliaths" of the league and gain a little pleasure. In the big picture, we know that all we can do bask in sporadic victories but with full knowledge we can't win the war.