That’s Amaury’s News and Commentary: A’s Port of Oakland buildings, railroad and gondola

No word yet on the Oakland A’s Howard Terminal ball park but baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred is losing patience (artists rendition of Oakland A’s Howard Terminal ballpark image from Piedmont Exedra)

A’s- Port Of Oakland, Buildings, Railroad and Gondola.

That’s Amaury News and Commentary

Amaury Pi-González

Recently commissioner of Major League Baseball Rob Manfred said he is not optimistic about a new deal to keep the team in A’s in Oakland. He made the remarks to the Sports Business Journal and confirmed relocation is on the table for the A’s but not only to Las Vegas but as well to other locations in other cities.

Manfred said that Tampa Bay Rays and the Oakland A’s need new ballparks, but reiterated (as he has done in the past) that Oakland is the team right now that concerns him the most. Manfred said (quote) “Frankly, in some ways we’re not sure we see a path to success, in terms of getting something built in Oakland.”

The commissioner is following the situation in Oakland and could be worried about the points listed below, that seems to be on the table between both parties.

Below deals with some of these topics.

-Port of Oakland. How can the ballpark affect the Port of Oakland operations? Concerns that the port needs to expand to accommodate large cargo ships. That this would be more difficult with a baseball stadium at Howard Terminal. Port of Oakland workers have demonstrated in front of the A’s team owner John Fisher in San Francisco as they are against the proposal to build the new stadium at Howard Terminal. Workers say that will displace blue collar jobs.

-Buildings. The Athletics plan calls for Howard Terminal to build one (1) residential tower as high as 600 feet and another at 400 feet tall. These buildings would compete with designs such as the Ordway building, which is 400 feet tall and the tallest building in downtown Oakland. Ordway building is also known as #1 Kaiser Plaza.

-Railroad. The DRC (Oakland Design Review Committee) wants a safe way for the visitors to the park to avoid the railroad tracks altogether. The DRC is concerned with the safety of people to get to the park across the railroad crossings. AMTRAK trains travels right in front of Jack London Square. Note. Union Pacific controls the rails.

-Gondola. In 2019 the Oakland A’s proposed the idea of a gondola to take fans from BART to Howard Terminal. However, this idea was not in the plans and reviewed by the committee. The proposal was to move fans from downtown Oakland to a stadium at Howard Terminal. The fans would be “ferried” via an elevated gondola similar to what you might see at a ski resort to the stadium. Looks like the gondola is a No Go.

Above are some of the key points to be discussed by the Alameda Board of Supervisors this October 26. As of today the official agenda for the meeting still pending and has not been announced to the public.

It seems that Commissioner Rob Manfred, who has put a clock in baseball to ‘speed up’ the game, has also put the A’s on the clock when it comes to the new Howard Terminal ballpark.

Amaury Pi Gonzalez is the lead Spanish play by play announcer for the Oakland A’s on flagship station 1010 KIQI Le Grande San Francisco and does News and Commentary at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

That’s Amaury’s News and Commentary podcast: Ray Fosse had a hard work ethic; he worked until he had to be carried out of the booth

Former Oakland A’s catcher and broadcaster Ray Fosse takes a seat at the Oakland Coliseum played in the big leagues from 1967 to 1979 and broadcasted the A’s from 1986 to 2021 before passing away Wed Oct 13, 2021 (TSN file photo)

On That’s Amaury’s podcast:

There is very little doubt about the player, broadcaster and great human being that Ray Fosse 74 was he grinded it out as a player and he did the same as a broadcaster up until his very last game that he called. Fosse who passed away on Wednesday was the A’s catcher who called and caught many historic games in his baseball career which included the A’s World Champion teams in 1973 and 1974.

Fosse’s baseball career spans from 1967-1972 with Cleveland, 1973-1975 Oakland, Cleveland 1976-1977, Seattle (1977) and finished his career in Milwaukee (1979). Fosse is most famously remembered for catching and dropping the ball in the 1970 All Star game when Cincinnati Reds and National Leaguer Pete Rose collided with Fosse at home to score the winning run. Fosse is in the top 100 players in the history of Cleveland Guardians history.

Fosse worked as an Oakland A’s broadcaster in both radio and TV from 1986 to 2021. Fosse on his last day of broadcasting at the A’s had to leave by medical assistance that’s how gritty he was he worked even when he was sick and no one knew he had cancer for 16 years. His radio broadcast colleague Ken Korach said “We never knew how bad it was and he was still working, it was incredible that he was working right up until this summer”

Amaury Pi Gonzalez is the Oakland A’s Spanish radio play by play lead announcer on flagship station 1010 KIQI Le Grande San Francisco and does News and Commentary at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

Where could A’s move to if Howard Terminal fails?

MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred spoke on Tuesday regarding the future of the Oakland A’s and Tampa Bay Rays who are in need of brand new stadiums and where they could move to if they don’t get them in Oakland or Tampa Bay (ABC 7 News file photo)

By Charlie O

Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred was in New York on Tuesday and was speaking and attending the CAA World Congress of Sports. He was asked about the stadium plans for Oakland and Tampa Bay that was provided via video by the Sports Business Journal.

Manfred admitted that the stadiums plans are at the critical point saying the Oakland Coliseum is in such poor condition, “particularly in the case of Oakland” Manfred said “we’ve had to open up the opportunity to explore other locations, just because it’s dragged on so long”

What are some of those locations? Manfred and Oakland A’s team president David Kaval have only explored Las Vegas and Kaval himself has made several trips to the Vegas South Nevada greater area looking at places just outside of Vegas like Henderson and mostly Summerlin home of the A’s triple A team the Aviators.

The list goes on of cities who want a MLB team either the Tampa Bay Rays who just were eliminated in the ALDS playoffs and the Oakland A’s who had a competitive season chasing the first place Houston Astros but failed to make post season.

Amongst those cities: New Orleans, Montreal, Indianapolis, Portland, Orlando, Nashville or Las Vegas. The list actually has more cities but these are the top places mentioned but Vegas being the most serious amongst those. What works against Vegas is that the community is “stadiumed out” having new stadiums for the Vegas Golden Knights, Las Vegas Aces, and the Las Vegas Raiders not to mention UNLV basketball. Also Las Vegas is the 39th ranked TV market in the country and Oakland is in the sixth largest TV market.

The city of Las Vegas will grow from a non big league market to a four team pro market with their top college basketball team UNLV. Nothing officially decided yet but word is to no ones surprise Vegas is the front runner for getting the A’s.

Oakland Mayor Libby Schaff said that nothing has changed and that it’s been frustrating getting the Howard Terminal agreement to get signed and agreed upon, “The commissioner remains very frustrated and impatient as am I about the progress toward locking down the Howard Terminal project.”

Schaff said that the next big move is when the Alameda County Board of Supervisors meet on Oct 26th to vote on using tax district dollars that would pay for the project and would help construct the surrounding infrastructure. Schaff said that the commissioner wants a total commitment for the developing and financing of affordable housing and public parks to make this a complete success and going forward with making the new A’s park a success.

That’s Amaury’s News and Commentary: George C. Scott in a movie as Charlie O Finley

George C. Scott in a Movie as Charlie O. Finley.

That’s Amaury News and Commentary

By Amaury Pi-González

Decades before Hollywood brought to the screen Moneyball in 2011, a non-fiction book by Michael Lewis about the 2002 season under Oakland Athletics manager Billy Beane (Brad Pitt) the Oakland A’s almost had a movie made depicting the live and success of A’s owner Charlie O. Finley by actor George C. Scott.

The Oakland A’s are one of only two teams to have won three or more consecutive World Series in history The New York Yankees who won a total of a record 27 World Series, had these consecutive titles: 1936-39 (4) 1949-53 (5) and 1998-2000 (3). The Athletics won in 1972-73-74. Nobody (including the Yankees) have won more than 3 consecutive World Series since 2000.

According to Nancy Finley, whose uncle was Charlie O Finley, Charlie was informed that George C. Scott was going to play him in a 1977 film depicting the great success of the “Swinging A’s” of the early 70’s dynasty. However by 1977 when Jimmy Carter was the President of the United States, there was high inflation and slow economic growth in the country, and like Nancy Finley told me “funding for this movie was rescinded”.

Actor George C. Scott (1927-1999) was a great actor who won numerous awards and nominations in the US and internationally. Nominated in 1959 for Anatomy of a Murder, 1961 for The Hustler, won in 1970 for his great portrayal of US Army General George C. Patton and was nominated in 1971 for the movie The Hospital.

George C. Scott did not have a great concept of Hollywood. As a matter of fact asked that his name be withdrawn and never accepted the Oscar he won for Patton. He was a Hollywood outcast who called the Oscars (quote) “a two hour meat parade, a public display with contrived suspense for economic reasons” and (quote) “I respectfully request that you withdraw my name from the name of nominees”.

In the photo George C. Scott doing some ‘acting’ with a face showing displeasure as next to him Charlie O. Finley presented him with a small replica of an Oscar with a baseball. Who knows, Scott might have won another Oscar if he was nominated and won for the Charlie O. Finley A’s movie. Obviously we will never know and even if he had won it he would probably have not accepted.

Amaury Pi Gonzalez is the lead Spanish play by play announcer for the Oakland A’s on flagship station 1010 KIQI LeGrande San Francisco and does News and Commentary at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

More of the Same: The A’s season finale mirrors their uneven season as a whole in a rough 7-6 loss to the Astros

By Morris Phillips

Hard to believe, and even harder to watch, the A’s finished their season in familiar fashion. Building three, one-run leads, squandering them, and ultimately falling short after a valiant, ninth inning comeback in a 7-6 loss to the Astros at Minute Maid Park.

In the complicated, nuanced vernacular unique to this sometimes confounding game of baseball, you can’t make this stuff up.

You can imagine what manager Bob Melvin said after the game. Really, in this case you could mimic his words as they were said.

“We came up just short, like we did this season, unfortunately,” Melvin said. “But I think next year, it just gives us a little bit more edge to get back to the postseason.”

The A’s finished the season 86-76, third in the AL West behind the Astros and the hard-luck Mariners, who missed the postseason for an on-going record within all of the four major U.S. sports of 20 consecutive seasons. The A’s opened the season with six losses, but followed that soon after with a 13-game win streak, and their 44-21 record that concluded on June 18 was the best run in Major League Baseball within that 65-game stretch.

Then things got disjointed, the team’s momentum stalled, and did so in a frustrating way in which the team’s offense and pitching took turns sputtering. The A’s finished the season with a 42-50 record in their last 92, With the postseason still within reach in the last three weeks season, the A’s lost 12 of 16.

That’s a long stretch to play poorly, and a more intense level of frustration followed the team in September. It was hard on the team, the management and the fans. But the A’s are clearly capable. When Melvin says they can bounce back in 2022, that’s almost a certainty given their track record. But this is Oakland, California, and these are the A’s: what happens this off-season is anyone’s guess.

But we do know this: Melvin’s correct, the 2022 A’s can bounce back, but as always they’re going to need the majority of their roster intact, and make some pricey decisions that more often than not have lead them to do something less than pricey. Just the decisions regarding retaining Ramon Laureano (80-game PED suspension) and Starling Marte (arguably the most effective trade deadline acquisition in MLB) will be fascinating.

But this division is anyone’s to control, even with the presence of the 2017 champion Astros. The Angels have spent the last six seasons issuing expensive contracts, but getting little to show for it. We’ve already mentioned the plight of Mariners. The Rangers are in rebuilding mode, although their new stadium and surprisingly, robust attendance could speed up a revival. And the Astros have been great, but nobody stays great forever, and the return or possible retirement of Dusty Baker as manager will be one of the postseason’s storylines.

Of course, the A’s have their own uncertainties to add to the mix. Despite the easing of COVID restrictions, their attendance was abysmal. And the Oakland-Las Vegas “where will they play?” saga is enough to cripple any franchise especially given the drama has reached its second decade.

So in summation: we’ll see what transpires.

On Sunday, the A’s scored single runs in the second and third, getting solo shots from Seth Brown and Tony Kemp. But the Astros matched, and the game was tied 2-2 in the fourth, when the A’s gained a third lead, 3-2, on Kemp’s sacrifice fly that scored Luis Barrera.

A’s starter Cole Irvin went six innings, allowing five hits and striking out four, but he departed trailing 4-3 after he was touched for a two-run homer courtesy of Kyle Tucker in the fifth.

Houston added insurance runs in the seventh and eighth and appeared to be headed to the playoffs gracefully, leading 6-3 headed to the ninth. The AL West champs will host the White Sox in a best-of-five starting Thursday.

But the A’s came up clutch in the ninth. Chad Pinder led off with a base hit, and Seth Brown brought the visitors within a run and nobody out with a two-run homer that was the seventh of eight hit in the game.

The eighth? With two outs, Khris Davis delivered, tying the game and bringing back memories of his best days in an Oakland uniform.

Melvin turned to Lou Trivino to handle the bottom of the ninth, and get the final game of the season to extras. But it didn’t happen.

Jason Castro led off with a single, and after Jose Altuve was retired, Trivino surrendered a double to Yordan Alvarez with Castro stopping at third. Two pitches later, the season ended with Mark Canha’s swiping concession of a base hit from Yuli Gurriel that landed less than 10 feet in front of the leftfielder.

“We didn’t finish off the game like we wanted, but to have the fight in the ninth inning to come back and tie the game like that, especially with Khris’ homer at the end, it was a really good feeling,” Melvin said.

A’s get clobbered in game two by Astros 10-4; Sunday last game of season for A’s

The Oakland A’s hitter Tony Kemp (5) has a look of surprise after the Houston Astros right fielder Kyle Tucker makes the catch on Kemp’s fly ball to end the top of the sixth inning at Minute Maid Field in Houston on Sat Oct 2, 2021 (AP News photo)

A’s Lose Game Two to Astros 10-4

By Barbara.Mason

With two games left in the season, the Oakland A’s took on the Houston Astros in Game Two of their final regular season series at Minute Maid Field in Houston.

As the A’s have done so often this year they took an early 2-0 lead. The Houston Astros fired back with three home runs off Paul Blackburn . Alvarez, Castro and Gurriel all hit long balls. After the Gurriel home run in the third inning Blackburn was relieved by James Kaprielian. Blackburn only went a couple innings before the change. The third home run gave Houston a 6-2 lead.

The A’s had scored a single run in the fifth inning. They still trailed 6-3 although the Astros had more in store for Oakland. They would score two runs in the sixth inning and in the seventh inning a fourth home run from Tucker allowing Gurriel to score.

The A’s had one run in the eighth inning. A single by Tony Kemp brought Matt Chapman home. It was a great game for Kemp who had 4 out of 5 hits. He was robed of a home run by Tucker which could have been a real difference maker. There were some unfortunate innings in this game for Oakland. The final was 10-4 in favor of Houston.

With this win Houston secured home field advantage in the playoffs and will host the Chicago White Sox for game 1 of the ALDS. Tomorrow in the last game of the season Oakland has the chance to win the series which would be a great way to end the season. While not what they were fighting for in the last several months it would be something positive they would take into the off-season.

In tomorrow’s game Cole Irvin will take the mound for Oakland and Jose Urquidy for Houston. First pitch is scheduled for 12:10.

A’s Win Nail Biter in Houston 8-6

The Houston Astros Jose Siri (below) slides so hard he upends Oakland A’s third baseman Josh Harrison (above) in the first inning at Minute Maid Field in Houston on Fri Oct 1, 2021 (AP News photo)

A’s Win A Nail Biter in Houston 8-6

By Barbara Mason

After a long, grueling and disappointing season the Oakland A’s took on the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park Friday night. The A’s were swept by the Seattle Mariners earlier this week and would like to finished the season on a high note by beating the division leading Astros. In their last series just a week ago, the A’s swept Houston.

The A’s will not have the home crowd support and this game may prove to be a difficult one. This team has surprised us all year and so I would say this series is a toss up.

Houston got up on the board in the first inning and led 1-0. The A’s answered in the third inning when Josh Harrison singled driving Tony Kemp home to tie up the game. Chad Pinder would extend their lead in the fourth inning with a home run to take the lead 2-1.

Matt Olson hit his 39th home run of the season driving Starling Marte home and giving Oakland a 4-1 lead. The Mariners would score once in the inning trying to get back in this game.

Oakland continued to pile it on in the eighth inning. Marte, Pinder and Yan Gomes scored giving the A’s a 7-2 lead. Oakland was not finished. Seth Brown would score on an error and it was at that point that Houston made a pitching change. The A’s had caused some major damage in the eighth inning leading 8-2.

The Houston Astros began to stir up a little trouble chipping away at the A’s lead in the bottom of the eighth inning. Jake Meyers singled driving in Carlos Correa. It was then that Bob Melvin pulled Yusmeiro Petit and sent in Deolis Guerra. It was not a good outing for Guerra.

The first batter he faced Jason Castro hit a home run with runners on base and just like that the score in this game was 8-6 in favor of the A’s. With two outs Lou Trivino came into the game to try to salvage the inning. The A’s were able to close out the inning and they were three outs away from a win in game one of the series.

In the ninth inning the A’s really needed some insurance runs. When playing a team like the Astros you just can’t have too large of a lead. Those insurance runs were nowhere to be found as the A’s went three up and three down.

The Astros were looking for a walk off. Lou Trivino walked two and with no outs the game was on the line for Oakland. Altuve would strike out, Brantley grounded out, Meyers grounded out and Oakland had won the game 8-6 in a nail biter. Lou Trivino got the save on his 30th birthday.

Game two is schedule for 4:10. Paul Blackburn will take the mound tomorrow and for the Astros Jake Odorizz

Oakland A’s podcast with Lewis Rubman: Too much Mariners and Rangers spoiled A’s drive to post season

Oakland A’s manager Bob Melvin after getting ejected by umpire Greg Gibson (53) Wed Sep 22, 2021 at the Oakland Coliseum against the Seattle Mariners worked as hard and skillfully as he could but it was not enough to win a Wild Card spot this season (AP News photo)

On the Oakland A’s podcast with Lewis Rubman for Jeremiah Salmonson:

#1 Lewis, This is our last A’s podcast for 2021 and as hard as that is it’s got to be harder for A’s manager Bob Melvin who skippered the ship as things happened in the course of the season like the bullpen struggled and too many meetings with the Rangers and Mariners.

#2 The Mariners were certainly tough customers on the A’s in the last two months of the season they swept the A’s in a four game series in Oakland and swept them again in Seattle this week in a three game series which eliminated them from playoff contention.

#3 The A’s before taking off to Seattle had a three game sweep in Oakland over the Houston Astros who the A’s currently trail by eight games and who they were with in two games behind them in second place for most of the season.

#4 Oakland A’s shortstop Elvis Andrus had successful surgery on Wednesday repairing his fibula which fractured on Saturday on a slide at home plate on Saturday. Andrus went through two surgeries one to repair the fibula and one to repair the ankle due to a sprain joint in the left leg. Dr. Bringham Au at Trinity Surgical Center in Arlington who performed the surgery said Andrus should be ready for spring training next season.

#5 The A’s will be starting Sean Manaea (10-10 ERA 3.94) he’ll be opposed by the Astros Framber Valdez (11-5 ERA 2.98) first pitch at Minute Maid Field 5:10 PDT.

Lewis Rubman filled in for Jeremiah Salmonson. Jeremiah did the Oakland A’s podcasts each Friday for the 2021 season and will be back Saturdays with the San Francisco 49ers podcasts at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

A’s take on Astros to end season; Series opens at Minute Maid Field Friday night

Oakland A’s starter Sean Manaea pitching against the Seattle Mariners in this Jul 21, 2021 photo at T Mobile Field in Seattle will start against the Houston Astros on Fri Oct 1, 2021 at Minute Maid Field in Houston (AP News file photo)

A’s Take On the Astros to End the Season

By Barbara Mason

It has been a mixed bag for the Oakland A’s the past week. It’s been sheer madness. Last week they were swept by the Mariners in a four series followed by an A’s sweep of the division leading Houston Astros. Last Monday the A’s again fell to the Mariners in a three game sweep. The loss yesterday was the twelfth loss in a row to the Seattle Mariners. The A’s cannot seem to crack this team and it has been beyond frustrating.

Starting tomorrow the A’s will finish their season in a three game series, again, with the Houston Astros. Hoping to duplicate last weeks series it would be a nice way to finish the season.

Now that the playoffs will have to wait until next year some wins over Houston would be a very good thing. Chris Bassitt had said that the team is very disappointed. They had the playoffs in clear view until they stumbled for the better part of September losing 15 games.

It was inconsistent play that was the A’s demise. A lot of trouble in the bullpen and at times the starters. They did have a bit of a drought when it came to hitting here and there. The defense was consistently solid one of the bright spots in the season.

So here we have the Houston Astros one last time. Oakland will not have the booing fans that they did in Oakland. The only place right now that the Astros are not hassled is right here at home in Houston.

At the time of this story the Astros were undecided as far as pitching. Oakland will send Sean Manea to the mound. His record is 10-10 with an ERA of 3.94. Matt Olson figures to be a factor in this weeks games. He has had 38 home runs this season and will no doubt add one or two more.

So it will be a bittersweet ending for the Oakland A’s. They were in contention for postseason action almost the entire season. Now it has come down to; maybe next year. Despite all of it the A’s gave their fans alot to cheer about this season. They had some great games and I believe they have a bright future. Yes there is some work to do but they will get it done; Skipper Melvin will see to that.

Mariners 4-2 win mathematically eliminate A’s

The seventh inning sacrifice that ended the Oakland A’s post season hopes when the Seattle Mariners Ty France hit a fly to score Dylan Moore for the go ahead run at T Mobile Field in Seattle on Wed Sep 29, 2021 (AP News photo)

By Barbara Mason and Jeremiah Salomonson

The red hot Seattle Mariners won their tenth out of their last 11 games to knock the Oakland A’s out of the Wild Card race on Wednesday night with a 4-2 victory at T Mobile Field in Seattle. While the A’s were eliminated the Mariners are still in the hunt for a shot at a second Wild Card.

The Mariners Ty France got a seventh inning sacrifice fly that put the M’s in front and Seattle got an insurance run from Abraham Toro who hit a home run with two outs in the eighth inning it was Toro’s first blast since Aug 31st.

The Mariners are just a half game back of the Boston Red Sox in the AL Wild Card for the second spot. The Mariners have done so well in rising to the top in the Wild Card they are just 1.5 back of the New York Yankees for first in the Wild Card.

The A’s had nothing but tough luck against the Mariners and took a 12th straight loss for the Mariners it was a franchise record for the most consecutive wins against a team in their history. The loss Wednesday snaps the A’s post season appearances for the last three straight years.

The first place Houston Astros in the AL West would have clinched the West but the Mariners win held the Astros back and their magic number is down to one. The Mariners have executed so well in winning their last 10 of 11 they did it in offense to come back or take leads as France’s sacrifice fly which drove in Dylan Moore. Moore had moved to second on a JP Crawford hit and run. Toro’s two run blast put the Mariners on top for the rest of the game eliminating the A’s.

The A’s have the day off on Thursday and are in Houston to open a three game series against the Astros on Friday night for a 5:10 pm first pitch at Minute Maid Field in Houston. The A’s Sean Manaea will start Friday (10-10 ERA 3.94) the Astros have not announced a starter yet.