The press conference has come and gone and if you want the recap, just read the live blogging of the event.
The biggest news that wasn't already leaked prior to the press conference was that A's owner Lewis Wolff confirmed the fact that the team's new name will include the designation "of Fremont."
Of course this had to happen because Fremont needs to gain some national notoriety out of the deal. My guess is that the name will likely be the San Jose Athletics of Fremont. Listen, you don't go with that moniker if you don't want to take advantage of market opportunities. Just ask Arte Moreno and the LOS ANGELES Angels of Anaheim. The simple reason Moreno attached LA to the name is because it's the second biggest media market in the world. San Jose is well known worldwide for its tech orientation and mucho, mucho dinero. I could see them going with something like East Bay Athletics of Fremont. But let's face it, no matter where they go from here I don't believe that Oakland will be a part of the team's new name. That's just my hunch. And I pray to the skies above that Silicon Valley Athletics of Fremont is stricken from all consideration. Please for the love of everything that is good and holy, do NOT go with that name.
Any way, a few other key highlights out of the press conference were the technology upgrades.
- For some reason the idea of a double-sided scoreboard that displays outside towards a nice park is very, very cool to me. I can imagine that in the playoffs, people would come just to sit outside when the park is sold out. Or sit there during fireworks nights when the A's often sell out.
- The idea that Cisco is going to make the A's MORE accessible to people via technology is thrilling. A question came up about people taking video and putting it on YouTube. You could have 8,000 different angles of a clutch home run to win a game. Course, according to many of you, Eric Chavez still won't be the one hitting it.
- I'm a sucker for new tech. I got an Xbox 360 on launch day, wireless Internet is the greatest invention ever and I love my iPod (although I'm considering trying to get a Zune at some point since my iPod and 360 communicate about as well as Ken Macha and Adam Melhuse). So knowing that the A's will finally be on the bleeding edge of this stuff is thrilling. I can envision the day someday when I'll be able to somehow blog from Cisco Field during a game. Sweet.
- Wolff claimed three and half years ago that if the A's couldn't make something work in Oakland, they would likely be leaving the state. I don't doubt that this is absolutely true due to the Giants flexing their territorial muscle. So given the fact that appeared to be a very real possibility, I'm happy that the team is aggressively pursuing this opportunity. Thank you Scott Haggerty for talking Wolff into the idea of Fremont because I would've likely dropped the team had they left Northern California.
- Billy Beane's reference to the fact that if a first grader started rooting for the A's this year and developed a love for a favorite player that he'd be able to see that player with the A's for a long time. Beane also said, "This will give fans the opportunity to no longer have to root for laundry." This is the best news of all from the move. Barry Zito will be one of the last A's stars to have to move on.
- The time frame appears to be 36-60 months once things start moving forward. That makes the earliest this happening is probably around 2010. I'm thinking the more likely scenario is 2011 or 2012.
- Traffic during the weekdays during that area could be a true nightmare, although probably not much worse than a day game at the Coliseum when it lets out around 4 p.m. or so. I imagine this is something that will get a ton of attention in getting the ultimate final approval.
- By the way, many reports claim that the A's may also name their new manager tomorrow. Any odds on whether or not this manager makes it to manage a game in the new ballpark?