The A’s and Major League Baseball threatened this week that if they don’t get their way they will pack up and leave the Bay Area.
The team has thrown down a greedy and opaque demand that the city of Oakland approve a $12 billion residential and commercial waterfront development project that happens to include a new ballpark — and requires a massive taxpayer subsidy.
If that’s the best the A’s can offer, the city should let them go.
Few people want to end the team’s 53-year stay in Oakland. Bay Area residents have fond memories of the decades of exciting, and sometimes championship, play. But the A’s and MLB are trying to pressure city officials into a bad deal.
The team’s demand would require the city to recklessly mortgage future tax revenues to bolster profits for the A’s. Despite team President Dave Kaval’s claims that the A’s would provide a privately financed ballpark, taxpayers would cover the cost of the infrastructure. And the more than $1 billion of city and community benefits Kaval keeps touting would also come from property taxes.