Now this is a subject that has really irked me recently, as I am sure is the case with many Oakland Athletics fans. On one hand I am from the Bay Area and when the Giants played in Candlestick I did not really seem to mind them and let’s face it, it really makes it more fun to go out in San Francisco when the Giants do well. On the other hand though, Giants fans are, generally, a bandwagon bunch. When the Giants started to get better, hats popped up on every street corner and all the sudden everyone was showing their pride for the black and orange. Not to mention the fact that Giants fans love to talk smack about the A’s, if you don’t understand baseball it is easiest to just hate on a neighboring team.
Well with these dissenting points of view in mind, it is time to try to put this whole debate to rest. Can an A’s fan in good conscience cheer for the Giants? I do not think so.
Let us start with a very simple reason why the Giants do not deserve the love of A’s fans in the World Series, and that is territory rights. Now, I for one want to keep the A’s in Oakland, but there are very legitimate arguments for moving the team. I will not come down on either side of this issue at the moment, but let’s just say that it is an important issue for the A’s franchise.
One of the reasons why the A’s cannot move to the South Bay is due to the territory rights which the Giants hold over the region, claiming that the South Bay is too important to the Giants fan base and advertisers. So where did the Giants get these all important territory rights? From the A’s! Now I know what you must be thinking, they probably purchased the rights for some sum of money, or the A’s gave them a hard time about it, but no, this is not the case. The A’s and the Giants used to share the rights to the South Bay, but when the Giants wanted to put a referendum thru in San Francisco with the hopes of moving the team, the A’s granted them the rights to move south out of kindness.
Apparently, less then two decades later. this gift means nothing, as now the Giants upper management refuses to budge on the territorial rights that should be shared at this point. As former A’s owner Stephen Schott put it
They had to get permission from the A’s. They didn’t pay for those territorial rights, by the way. Now, in the meantime, they built a stadium closer to Oakland than they were before. And now, if we talk about another stadium down in that area, they go berserk. It’s like my 4-year-old granddaughter says sometimes, ‘crybaby, crybaby.’
Clearly this should be reason enough to dislike the Giants franchise, but lets delve a little deeper. The Giants fans have been getting a lot of love recently for their presence in the playoffs. Now many of my good friends are Giants fans, and it is true there are tons of good fans, but let’s face it, go to a game in the regular season, and it may have been packed, but probably no more than 10% of the fans could actually name the full rotation or the starting line up. I mean come on, half of the fans are wearing Barry Zito jersey’s, and where is he in the post season? Truth is, the majority of Giants fans are as fickle as their love for Cody Ross, and while they have a great turn out in the regular season, it’s really just because of that slide in left field… That and the first pump cam.
Lastly, there is a huge media bias towards the Giants in the Bay Area. The A’s are hard to find anywhere but on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area, and if you are looking for any A’s news in the paper well you better stick to the Oakland Tribune because forget the Chronicle, the East Bay just isn’t their thing. Add in the pretentious hosts and uninformed callers on KNBR and well you’ve got yourself a really despisable media presence.
That being said, why cheer for the Rangers? Well they are an AL West team and they are representing our division, a division that has been hated on all season. Not to mention Josh Hamilton has racked up the most unbelievable comeback story since this guy.
So I say let’s bury the division hatchet, and let’s go Rangers, although if San Francisco wins, at least the nightlife will be spectacular. All in all, the A’s historically have a better record against the Giants, so lets take solace in that.