Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred warned Oakland city officials that he could move the Athletics to Las Vegas if the city didn't drop its lawsuit over the future of the Coliseum, Oakland mayor Libby Schaaf confirmed in a TV interview on Tuesday.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle, City Councilman Larry Reid was told by Manfred earlier this week that Las Vegas could be a possible relocation site for the A's. Oakland and Alameda County currently share ownership of the Coliseum, and the city wants Alameda County to sell its half of the stadium to the city instead of to the A's.
"The reports of that are accurate," Schaaf told KTVU-TV. "[Las Vegas] is the city that came out of his mouth."
Schaaf believes Manfred chose Las Vegas due to the fact that Oakland will soon lose its NFL team, the Raiders, to that city possibly as soon as 2020.
"Obviously he chose his city wisely as far as exposing a pain-point that all Oaklanders feel about losing our sports teams," Schaaf said.
Oakland sued Alameda County to block its sale of its share of the Coliseum to the A's, which the team hoped would subsidize the cost of a privately owned new stadium. A judge issued a temporary restraining order last week blocking the transaction.
Schaaf told KTVU that the city's lawsuit was filed "over my objection."
"I don't think that it serves the public when two governmental agencies are suing each other," Schaaf said. "It certainly is my direction that the city and the county work collaboratively. We are co-owners of this land. The board of supervisors are so well-intentioned. They want to do right by their constituents, which are our constituents, so I believe we will get something done collaboratively and put this lawsuit behind us."
The next lawsuit hearing is scheduled for Nov. 14.