We’ve heard this and that about the Yankees wanting to trade for Royals’ closer Joakim Soria. That seemed like a tall order anyway given how much he’d cost the Yankees, but here’s an even better reason why it isn’t going to happen: the Yankees are one of the six teams on Soria’s no-trade list.
That report comes courtesy of Andrew Marchand of ESPN New York. Marchand says that doesn’t mean a trade couldn’t happen — the Yankees would just have to find some way to persuade Soria to drop his objection to coming to New York. This seems silly to me, however.
Why do you think Soria has a no-trade clause that includes the Yankees? My guess: because the Yankees have the best closer in baseball history playing for them and he’s showing no signs of slowing down. A ticket to New York for Soria or any other closer means a ticket to middle relief — the term “setup man” is nice, but it’s still middle relief — and if you’re a reliever who isn’t getting saves, you’re a reliever who isn’t going to get the money and the glory and the chicks and all that stuff.
If I were a closer the last place I’d want to go is New York. It’s the one place where you got no chance whatsoever.
The Oakland Athletics ballpark saga has dragged on for years and years and years. They’ve considered San Jose, Fremont and at least three locations in Oakland as potential new ballpark sites. The whole process has lasted almost as long as the Braves and Rangers played in their old parks before building new ones.
In the past several months the Athletics’ “stay in Oakland” plan has gained momentum. At one point the club thought it had an agreement to build a new place near Peralta/Laney College in downtown Oakland. There have been hiccups with that, so two other sites — Howard Terminal, favored by city officials — and the current Oakland Coliseum site have remained in play. There are pros and cons to each of these sites, as we have discussed in the past.
One consideration not mentioned before was mentioned by team president David Kaval yesterday: sea level rise due to climate change. From the San Francisco Chronicle:
Kaval mentioned twice that the Howard Terminal site would have to take into account sea-level rise and transportation concerns — and he said there have been conversations with the city and county and the Joint Powers Authority about developing the Coliseum site.
The Howard Terminal/Jack London Square area of Oakland has been identified as susceptible to dramatically increased flooding as a result of projected sea level rise due to climate change. On the other side of the bay both the San Francisco Giants and Golden State Warriors have had to consider sea level rise in their stadium/arena development plans. Now it’s the Athletics’ turn.
Sports teams are not alone in this. Multiple governmental organizations, utilities and private businesses have already made contingency plans, or are at least discussing contingency plans, to deal with this reality. Indeed, beyond the Bay Area, private businesses, public companies, insurance companies and even the U.S. military are increasingly citing climate change and sea level rise in various reports and disclosures of future risks and challenges. Even the Trump Organization has cited it as a risk . . . for its golf courses.
Fifteen of Major League Baseball’s 30 teams play in coastal areas and another five of them play near the Great Lakes. While some of our politicians don’t seem terribly concerned about it all, people and organizations who will have skin the game 10, 20 and 50 years from now, like the Oakland Athletics, are taking it into account.