The Oakland Athletics still don't have publicly available ballpark renderings for their new stadium in Las Vegas. If you ask many baseball fans, they would say that the Athletics have not met the league-mandated requirement to have a binding contract to build a new stadium in place by January 15 in order to keep the team eligible for revenue sharing.
Last week, Mick Akers of the Las Vegas Review Journal argued otherwise, claiming that the deal the team has in place with Bally's Corp to build a stadium on the Tropicana site is in fact enough to satisfy the requirements set by the league.
The league has neither confirmed nor denied whether the A's have met the requirement, and it's unclear whether that knowledge will be made public as we approach the deadline.
This offseason has been a messy one off the field for the A's. John Fisher made his first public comments in quite some time, speaking to the media at the owners meetings in Texas back in November. Fisher claimed that despite all the heartache and torment he's put Athletics fans through, that he's actually had it tougher than the fans. What a joke.
The team had scheduled a ballpark reveal in early December, then immediately cancelled the event just a few hours later. They claimed that the deaths of two on-duty Nevada state troopers were the cause for the cancellation, as they didn't want disrupt the peace. However, more than a month later no event has been rescheduled.
It remains unclear whether John Fisher has the ability to finance his portion of the project in Las Vegas. There were rumors of them potentially moving away from the Tropicana site and toward a plot of land off the highway in Henderson, NV. How their tourism-based ticket sales approach would work in this scenario is beyond understanding.
It's also unclear whether the Nevada legislature would rewrite the public spending bill to allow for Fisher and the A's to build on a different site. As it stands, the $380 million currently allocated to the team is strictly for the Tropicana site, which is just 9 acres.
I can go on and on about this, and it's deeply upsetting that we've been focused on the same issues about the relocation process for so long. There are so many unresolved portions of this ordeal, and yet the league voted to allow Fisher to move forward with the process without having answers to any of these questions.
On top of that, the A's decided to block the Oakland Ballers, the Pioneer League's newest club, from playing a summer game at the Coliseum. There are many speculations about why the A's don't want other teams playing in their building. It's easy to envision the B's outdrawing the A's on that night, disrupting the A's narrative that there aren't baseball fans in Oakland, and that the Coliseum is unfit for a professional team.
It's probably too much to ask for the A's to be controlled by an owner who cares about the on-field product, but I'm honestly just tired of the run around. I can't wait for spring training and opening day, where we can let baseball distract us from all of the off field chicanery and backstabbing from Fisher and his cronies.