The Oakland A's haven't gotten permission from Major League Baseball to move to San Jose. But if they do, a report commissioned by San Jose City Council says they'd be hauling 1,000 new jobs and $130 million a year with them across the Bay.
The San Jose Mercury News obtained the report and notes that the proposed 32,000-seat stadium, with 81 regular season home games, would bring $130 million into the San Jose economy each year. It also estimates that over 30 years, having the A's play in San Jose would bring in a total of nearly $3 billion into the San Jose region.
That number even seems low. With the price of ballpark concessions, 30 years from now we'll probably be paying $3 billion just for a large order of nachos.
San Jose City Council is understandably delighted with these numbers. "San Jose is ready to play ball," Mayor Chuck Reed told the Mercury News after seeing the report.
The way Mayor Reed is always speaking in baseball analogies, next time he speaks publicly on this topic I half expect him to be chewing a wad of tobacco and scratching his privates.
This analysis went out of it's way to avoid the mistakes Oakland made in bringing back the NFL Raiders in 1995. Namely, they intentionally guessed low game attendance estimates. Their estimated average game attendance is only 24,300 per game, which is what the A's are currently averaging in Oakland.
The report initally looks like a great deal for San Jose. But wait until the San Francisco Giants start arguing with the umpires.
Joe Kukura is a freelance writer who would name the A's San Jose ballpark Joey Chestnut Field.