Oakland A's: The Only Long-Term Solution Is New Ownership

Jared FeldmanContributor IIIJuly 11, 2011

SAN JOSE, CA - NOVEMBER 14:  Lew Wolff (L) owner and managing partner of the Oakland Athletics speaks at a press conference with Major League Baseball Commisioner Bud Selig announcing the building of a new ballpark in Fremont, California, on land owned by Cisco Systems, at their headquarters on November 14, 2006 in San Jose, California. The Oakland A's will purchase the land from Cisco and have sold the naming rights for the new ballpark to Cisco Systems Inc.  (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

The A's are 12 games out of first place, and that's not the only bad news.

The A's haven't been competitive since 2006 when they advanced to the ALCS. Since then, that's four and a half seasons; the A's best record was in 2010 at 81-81.

Average, that's the A's best season. Average.

Is that what the Athletics have been reduced to?

This was a team that won three straight titles in the 70s, three straight pennants from 1988-90. What do the A's have to show for the last two decades? Nothing. No pennants, no world titles. One playoff series win and four Game 5 ALDS losses.

I digress. The problems of the last five years were caused by an uncreative front office, lackluster minor league development and an owner unwilling to spend the money needed to make the team a contender.

How can all of these problems be solved? They need to start at the top. With new ownership.

I know its difficult to just demand new ownership, but the organization and fans have had enough, I assume as much. The A's need an owner who will spend the money to bring in marquee free agents, a top minor league scouting team and someone with enough chutzpah to get the A's a new stadium.

The A's are stuck much like the Giants were in 1993 when they threatened a move to Tampa Bay. Now, while the A's aren't exactly on their way out the door, any more waiting and the A's might be done for.

Who could solve this problem?

Mark Cuban for one. It has been known for quite some time that Cuban wishes to enter the world of baseball ownership, as he has already failed in attempts to buy the Cubs and Rangers.

Now, the Dodgers would be an obvious candidate because of their financial woes. But the A's are a blank slate, they don't have a real identity and their city doesn't have any kind of associated sports reputation. The A's could be molded in Cuban's image. Not literally, but figuratively.

I don't know who could convince Cuban to follow through and buy the A's, but it would be the first step out of this large hole that is the Athletics organization.