Rob Manfred is an absolute piece of sh*t. We all knew that before the Oakland A's relocation saga, but had it confirmed for us on Thursday during a press conference about the franchise's move to Las Vegas. At every turn, Manfred was smug, smarmy, a flat-out liar and, worst of all, heartless. He's a horrendous representative for the game of baseball and, if he had any sense at all, he'd walk away right now.
Major League Baseball's commissioner stood in front of reporters -- because the a-hole owner of the A's refuses to do so -- and tried to explain why a franchise that had called Oakland home since 1968 was being allowed to move. His answers were as sh*tty as you'd expect. In the process he flat-out lied about Oakland's long-gestating stadium deal and insulted the A's fans who have subsidized and supported the franchise for nearly six decades. Even fans of other franchises should be insulted by his comments.
Here's Manfred claiming Oakland never proposed a stadium deal:
That is a bald-faced lie. And here is ABC 7's Larry Beil tearing it apart:
Also, Manfred saying he "feels sorry for the fans" but that the community would never support the A's is rich. That's the same community that propped the franchise up for 55 years, including through some awful times. We all know Oakland has supported that franchise and could continue to do so. It's a joke to say otherwise.
Just a reminder, that community has been sh*t on by John Fisher since he became the controlling owner of the A's in 2016. Manfred has no criticism for a guy who has raised ticket prices while gutting the team's roster, refusing to do basic maintenance/upkeep on his stadium and has attempted to extort the city of Oakland and its residents for seven years. All the while he's been raking in massive profits thanks to revenue sharing.
Not only has Manfred not criticized Fisher for treating his fanbase like garbage, he's actually going to reward the deadbeat by waiving MLB's $300 million relocation fee.
When asked about the waves of A's fans who showed up on Tuesday to protest the proposed move, Fisher's ownership and to beg him to sell the team, Manfred was unbelievably smug in his response:
Seriously Rob, go f*ck yourself. You really expect people to show up and spend their hard-earned money to watch the gutted roster Fisher has put together that is currently 19-52? That's on ownership, not the fans. It's clear Manfred thinks teams are entitled to fans' money and shouldn't have to put a competitive product on the field to get it.
I understand that Manfred is the mouthpiece of the owners and will always defend them. But he has completely lost any credibility -- not that he had any to begin with -- by consistently blaming fans for the actions of ownership. Fisher is a bad actor. He's a terrible owner who doesn't care about winning or his fan base. Now he's grifted his way to Las Vegas where he'll continue to do the same things he has in Oakland simply because he's faced zero consequences.
While you may not care much what happens to the A's, rest assured your franchise could be next. Milwaukee, Cincinnati and Tampa Bay are next up and places like Nashville and Portland will be used as leverage to extort money from those cities. But it won't stop there. Manfred and his cronies operate with impunity and face zero consequences when they rip the hearts from fan bases around the country.
We've seen this same pattern in the NFL with San Diego, St. Louis and, yes, Oakland having their teams ripped away by greedy owners looking to make a quick buck. This will continue to happen until citizens and politicians in the destination cities step up and reject this kind of behavior. Nevada failed to do so despite citizens overwhelmingly disapproving of the state's $380 million stadium bill.
Manfred's comments and actions over the last few months have made one thing crystal clear: He, and the rest of Major League Baseball, don't care about the sport's fans. Your loyalty means absolutely nothing to them.
That won't change until MLB has new leadership.