Athletics meet with city of Oakland, Alameda County to discuss lease extension

The Athletics met with representatives of Oakland and Alameda County on Thursday regarding a lease extension at the Coliseum site
Sep 11, 2021; Oakland, California, USA; The main scoreboard displays the logo to commemorate 9/11
Sep 11, 2021; Oakland, California, USA; The main scoreboard displays the logo to commemorate 9/11 / Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

The Oakland Athletics met with representatives from the city of Oakland and Alameda County this afternoon. The meeting was called to discuss the viability of the Athletics remaining in the Coliseum after their lease expires following the 2024 season.

As it stands, the A's don't have a ballpark to play in during the 2025-2027 seasons while they wait for their new ballpark to be built in Las Vegas.

As reported by Scott Ostler of the SF Chronicle, the meeting between the parties was short and sweet, lasting about an hour. The two sides did not come to a conclusion but they did amicably agree to meet again and continue discussions.

Per Ostler's report ($),“We had a very open and frank conversation about all different scenarios and alternatives and options, and nothing was taken off the table,” said David Haubert, an Alameda County supervisor, adding, “We agreed to continue to meet and make progress, so there will be additional meetings.”

It's been speculated that the city and the county would ask for a variety of concessions from the Athletics in exchange for allowing the renewal of the lease agreement between the parties.

Included in those speculations are that the city would want to keep the rights to the Athletics' brand and reserve the right to acquire an MLB expansion franchise in the near future, an agreement to purchase John Fisher's share of the Coliseum site after the team leaves for Las Vegas, and a substantial rate hike in the lease agreement itself, as well as a portion of the Athletics' television broadcast revenue for the 2024 season.

No definitive agreement is in place at this time, but if all the city gets out of allowing Fisher to keep the A's in Oakland is an increased rent payment, they should be ashamed of themselves.

Fisher has taken advantage of the city and the county for too long. The Mayor and the county representatives should be playing hardball with Fisher during these negotiations. Realistically, they should be looking to get Fisher to give up his half of the Coliseum site ownership so they can re-develop the site after the A's leave.

Whether that means building a new ballpark for an expansion team or building a more community-focused development doesn't matter. If Fisher wants to stay in Oakland so that he can continue to receive local television broadcasting revenue during the 2025-2027 seasons, he needs to sell his 50% stake of the site back to the city of Oakland so the city can decide what to do with the site.