Bay Area sports limping along 

The Bay Area blues: The Warriors can’t catch a break. The A’s can’t catch on. The Giants can’t catch a ground ball — or if they do, can’t throw it properly to first base.

Dare we mention the Sharks, who until proven differently, remain the only major league franchise in the region yet to win their sport’s championship?

And isn’t that interesting about the Raiders, according to USA Today, telling nonshoulder-padded employees that in lieu of cutbacks or furloughs — you have heard about the dire condition of the NFL, haven’t you? — they could sell season tickets equaling 10 percent of their salaries.

Who’s that at the door, the Avon lady? No, the Raider man.

"It was like Christmas," defensive coordinator Chuck Bresnahan told Jarrett Bell of USA Today when Amy Trask, the Raiders’ chief executive, explained the plan.

During the lockout, some teams are sending workers out the door, if temporarily, on a forced vacation. In effect, the Raiders are doing the same thing, telling employees, "Get out of here," but adding, when you’re out, do something useful. Help us end the local TV blackouts.

The Niners never have a home game blacked out, even though it’s acknowledged they never sell out, until purchasing the up-to-10,000 leftovers themselves. Maybe they ought to try the Raiders’ idea.

The idea Alex Smith once more will be the Niners’ quarterback when the lockout ends (with $9 billion at stake, it will end and there will be a season) seems legitimate.

Smith, the No. 1 pick in the 2005 draft — time flies when you’re having fun — told reporters from The Sacramento Bee and Comcast SportsNet Bay Area they could figure he’ll return for a seventh season, despite the booing.

New coach Jim Harbaugh already said Smith will be the favorite to win the QB job, if he re-signs. The longer the labor dispute lasts, the greater the chance Smith, and others, will stay with their current teams.

For the Warriors, the hope, unrealistic as it might have been, was in Tuesday night’s lottery they would move up in the draft from the No. 11 position where they were slotted at the end of the regular season. Nice thought. When the festivities were done, so, in a manner of speaking were the Warriors, still picking 11th.

The sour pinot noir group might point out this is a lousy draft, so climbing to the first three wouldn’t be as critical as the seasons when a LeBron James or Kevin Durant was available. Still, the Warriors need a big man.

The A’s need people in the seats. Tuesday night in another downpour (what happened to spring?) the A’s scored 14 times and drew 14 fans. Or so it seemed. For the fan count. The runs were actual.

The A’s went in to Wednesday’s game tied for first in the AL West and next to last in all of baseball in attendance, ahead of Cleveland.

The A’s face the Giants this weekend at AT&T Park, a matchup of teams which have pitching, and in the case of San Francisco, occasionally fielding.

Tim Lincecum on Monday night and Jonathan Sanchez on Tuesday each made a throwing error that contributed to a big inning for the Rockies. When you have no offense, you’d better have a defense.


Art Spander has been covering Bay Area sports since 1965 and also writes on and Email him at

About The Author

Art Spander

Art Spander

Art Spander has been covering Bay Area sports since 1965 and also writes on and Email him at
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