A's Owners Not Looking to Sell

Bud Selig says A's and Giants need to work out their own problems.

Friday, May 18, 2012  |  Updated 10:48 AM PDT
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A's Owners Not Looking to Sell

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Lew Wolff (L) speaks at a press conference with Bud Selig announcing the building of a new ballpark in Fremont. This was taken in 2006. A lot has changed since then, but not Wolff's plan to get the heck out of Oakland.

Baseball commissioner Bud Selig says it's up to Lew Wolff to decide whether to consider additional sites for a new ballpark for the A's, and the Oakland co-owner maintains he's focused on San Jose rather than a move outside the Bay Area.

Speaking Thursday after a quarterly owners' meeting, Selig said there's no timetable for resolving the A's dispute with the Giants. The Giants are preventing the A's from building a ballpark in downtown San Jose, which is part of the Giants' territory.

The two team's start a weekend series against each other Friday.

Major League Baseball has been reluctant to approve relocations. When the Montreal Expos became the Washington Nationals after the 2004 season, it was the first shift since the expansion Washington Senators became the Texas Rangers in 1972.

Asked whether the A's would consider other relocation possibilities, Selig responded: "You'd have to ask Lew Wolff. That's really his decision to make."

Twenty-three teams have opened ballparks since 1989, and the A's and Tampa Bay are the only teams still seeking new stadiums. Wolff is allowed to consider other sites within the A's territory -- such as downtown Oakland -- but approval from MLB would be needed for a move outside the territory.

"It depends where they'd be. They could be all over the world, for that matter," Selig said. "They need approval. We have to go through an approval process. It just depends on where they're moving to."

Selig established a committee to examine the situation in March 2009 but appears reluctant to impose a decision on either team.

Wolff has said he does not plan to sell the team and has no regrets in buying the franchise despite the rundown Oakland Coliseum.

"Lew continues to be committed to moving to San Jose, following the procedures and guidelines of the commissioner and the committee," team spokesman Ken Pries said. "The focus has not changed in keeping the team in the Bay Area, and specifically San Jose. The focus is San Jose, No. 1, and keeping the team in the Bay Area."

Selig said last month that he hoped the A's and Giants would resolve the matter themselves, but there's no indication that will happen.

"Both clubs yesterday made a presentation to the executive council, but there's nothing new other than that," Selig said.

He added that he can't provide a timetable and responded "no" when asked whether some kind of decision was approaching.

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