Former Oakland Athletics pitcher Dave Stewart has submitted a $115 million bid to buy the city of Oakland's share of the Coliseum site. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Stewart has plans for developing the site and potentially building a new stadium if the Oakland Athletics' Howard Terminal ballpark doesn't come to fruition.
Stewart, 63, is from Oakland and won a World Series title with the A's in 1989 and was the MVP of that Fall Classic. He posted four straight 20-win seasons for championship A's teams in the late 80s and early 90s. Following his career as a starting pitcher, Stewart worked as an agent, coach and front office executive. Currently, he works as an analyst on the A's pre- and post-game shows on NBC Sports California.
Home has ALWAYS been where my heart is. Oakland is every bit of who and why I am... An opportunity to do right by our community, keep our community, to do BETTER by our community is the only driving force for me in this. #wishusluck #Godspeed https://t.co/zwy3ocDgsk— Dave “Smoke” Stewart (@Dsmoke34) January 17, 2021
"I grew up right there and I've watched what's happened in East Oakland," Stewart told the Chronicle. "East Oakland seems like a forgotten area.
"My thought was, 'Why should people there have to go to San Francisco for nice restaurants or stores?' If there is going to be affordable housing there, why not nice restaurants and shops — and you create employment opportunities. Why wouldn't you create a city within the city and revive the area?"
In recent years, the NBA's Golden State Warriors and NFL's Las Vegas Raiders have left Oakland. Entering the 2021 MLB season, the A's are the lone tenant and last remaining professional sports team to be using the Coliseum.
The A's have begun the process of building a new ballpark, the aforementioned Howard Terminal. A privately financed ballpark, Howard Terminal -- if completed -- would be the smallest in MLB. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the proposed Howard Terminal project is at a stalemate and it does not appear that their originally planned 2023 opening will happen. Meanwhile, the Coliseum would be converted into a park, tech center and housing.
"The bid is in and I need to turn in the vision, put the plans for the property on paper for the city to consider it properly," Stewart told the Chronicle. "At some point I need to prove the financials, but that's not a problem."
According to the Chronicle, a spokesperson for Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf confirmed Stewart's offer is one of "several" the city has received. The Chronicle notes that the city of Oakland has been negotiating with the A's about possibly selling its share to the team as well.