In an incredibly unusual move, the city of San Jose has filed a federal lawsuit against Major League Baseball in an attempt to bring the Oakland A’s to town.
The basis of the city’s suit reportedly stems from an attack on MLB’s use of federal antitrust law, and while the long-standing (and much discussed) exemption that MLB has enjoyed has come under attack before, this is one of the more high-profile discussions. The exact language of the suit is up for discussion, but San Jose is indicating that MLB has deliberately held up a vote that would potentially allow Oakland to move to a new ballpark that is 40 miles away from San Jose.
If this entire discussion seems familiar, the first discussions surrounding a potential move began over four years ago, when Commissioner Bud Selig formed a committee to investigate such a move. Obviously, the San Francisco Giants are the key part in the entire controversy, as they vehemently opposed such a move based on the territorial rights agreement for the league.
Apparently (as reported by ESPN), Selig has repeatedly rejected overtures by San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed to discuss the issue, and frankly, it looks as if Selig is catering to the needs of his two-time World Series champion in the Giants. It remains to be seen whether Oakland’s ownership will continue to pursue San Jose, but if the past is any indication, the organization firmly believes that San Jose is the best landing spot for a new stadium to replace to outdated Oakland Coliseum.
In short, the impact of any potential vote by MLB (if we ever get there) could be huge for Bay Area baseball fans, so this is a must-follow story.