Clarifying facts about A’s 

➤ “Wolff not giving up on his A’s-to-San Jose pipedream,” Sports, March 11

San Francisco Examiner sports columnist Glenn Dickey wrote an article about Oakland A’s Owner and Managing Partner Lew Wolff. The column featured numerous and un-resourced inaccuracies that need to be clarified.

For the record:

The Oakland A’s have paid rent to play their games at Coliseum and will continue to pay rent under the current new two-year agreement with the Joint Powers Authority. The A’s are also the only team playing at the Coliseum that directly pays for day of game police protection.

The team continues to negotiate with the JPA about a 10-year extension to continue to play at the Coliseum. Under such an arrangement, the A’s would continue to pay rent and has offered to pay for over $10 million in major improvements to the venue including two HD video scoreboards and LED ribbon boards.

It is not “urban legend” that Walter Haas granted territorial rights to Giants owner Bob Lurie so he could explore possibilities in the South Bay. It is fact and Major League Baseball or the A’s would have confirmed that if either would have been asked.

Mr. Wolff did not create “artificial attendance reduction” by tarping off seats in the upper deck of the Coliseum. As a point of reference, the average attendance at the Coliseum in the 10 seasons before the tarps were installed was 21,872 — capacity with the tarps installed is 35,067. Attendance in 2013 averaged 22,337.

On several occasions, Mr. Wolff has said the team will remove the tarps if there is consistent ticket demand that justifies it.

In fact, the team did remove the tarps during the 2013 postseason once ticket sales indicated the need for a larger capacity. However, the smaller capacity with tarps has clearly created a more intimate and exciting atmosphere at the Coliseum, as noted by many of our players, media and fans.

Bob Rose

A’s public-relations director


➤ “M-line overhaul takes step forward,” The City, March 2

Better options for transit

SFMTA wants to shift the M-Line from the median of 19th Avenue to the west edge of the street. The move would involve depressing the M-Line tracks from south of St. Francis Circle to south of Buckingham, a distance of ¾ mile. Farther south, the SFMTA proposes to build a new bridge to get the M’s back over Junipero Serra to Randolph.

Are they kidding?!

The biggest impediment to LRV service in southwestern SF is the St. Francis Circle intersection. Depressing the K-Line and M-Line tracks just north of the intersection would allow Muni’s $3.5 million LRV’s to flow smoothly below street grade; thereby eliminating the bottleneck.

K’s would connect to the existing tracks in the median of Junipero Serra. M’s would travel below grade under Ocean Avenue, the northbound traffic lanes of 19th and Winston, connecting to the existing surface tracks in the 19th Avenue median.

Advantages: continued use of 19th Avenue’s transit-only median, reduced K and M trip times, improved K and M reliability and, if desired, a safer way for pedestrians at Holloway to cross 19th Avenue traffic lanes.

Why tear up 19th Avenue and Junipero Serra Boulevard? Why not just eliminate the bottleneck?

Jerry Cauthen

San Francisco

Editor’s note: Due to an editing error, we are rerunning an updated version of this letter provided by Mr. Cauthen.

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