MLB to Oakland: Drop lawsuit or lose baseball team

Bay Area

OAKLAND (KRON) – “The Las Vegas Athletics.”

How does that sound? Well, if the deal between the City of Oakland and the ownership of the A’s goes sideways the team could relocate to another city.

That is because a recently filed lawsuit has Major League Baseball signaling moving the A’s out of the Bay Area.

Drop the lawsuit against Alameda County or lose another sports team. 

That was the basic message to the City of Oakland from MLB Commissioner Robert Manfred. 

This is in response to Oakland City Council’s recent vote authorizing the city’s attorney to file this lawsuit over the A’s ownership attempting to purchase the county’s interest in the Coliseum complex. 

Oakland City Councilmember Noel Gallo says the city had no choice but to file.

“What happened, we have been in negotiating with the county for months, for over a year trying to purchase the land but at the same time the Oakland A’s went around the City of Oakland trying to cut a deal with Alameda County,” Gallo said.

He says instead of selling to the City of Oakland, the county agreed to sell its half of the Coliseum site to the A’s, which according to a complaint violates the state’s Surplus Land Act regarding the publicly owned property.

“The land belongs to the public and all we can do is lease the land and that is all I am willing to do,” Gallo said.

“The city has had ample time to work with us to come up with a deal,” Alameda County Supervisor Nate Miley said.

Not only that, Alameda County Supervisor Nate Miley says the county’s $85-million agreement to sell their share of on the Coliseum site to the A’s does not conflict with any state laws.

“Our attorneys have looked at it and they feel we can move ahead with selling our half interest,” Miley said. 

Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, a strong proponent of the A’s new Howard Terminal Stadium project sent KRON4 this statement which reads: 

“I’ve been clear about the path to keeping the A’s in Oakland – build a privately-financed ballpark that’s responsible to taxpayers and enhances neighborhood vitality. I’m confident we’ll get there.”

But MLB has made it clear that getting there will mean dropping that lawsuit.

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