The July 1 deadline for the A's to exercise a year-to-
year lease option at the Oakland Coliseum "may be delayed
while team owners try to work out a host of issues with
Oakland and Alameda County officials," according to Hickey &
Counts of the OAKLAND TRIBUNE. A's Owners Steve Schott and
Ken Hofmann "want to negotiate a way to avoid offering the
team up for sale at a discounted price -- as required in
their lease -- and still take the short-term lease option."
Giving notice on July 1 will allow the team to play year-to-
year through 2000, but it also "involves a gamble," for if
they give notice, the Coliseum Authority "will have four
months to find a buyer" that would keep the team in Oakland
for a sale price of 90% of the team's market value. Schott
said that he and Hofmann have talked about putting the team
up for sale "a lot lately, but no decision has been made
yet." City and county officials have met with the A's once
to "resolve" the $48M claim the team has filed against both
entities. Oakland Vice Mayor Ignacio De La Fuente said that
pushing back the deadline "could buy time to reach a
resolution" to the dispute (OAKLAND TRIBUNE, 6/17).
MLB Rangers President Tom Schieffer said yesterday that
TX Gov. George W. Bush turned his $600,000 investment in the
team into at least $15M, according to Slater & Oppel of the
DALLAS MORNING NEWS. Bush was among a group of investors
who bought the Rangers for $86M nine years ago. For Bush,
"whose name has been floated as a potential GOP presidential
candidate in 2000," the Rangers deal "is by far the most
lucrative investment" in his business career. Bush paid
$606,000 for about 1.8% of the team, but because he served
as Managing General Partner, his stake rose to 12%.
Schieffer said that Bush received $14.9M from the sale and
he could collect another $1-2M in final accounting. Bush's
profits are two-fold: he received $2.7M strictly for his
partnership interest, and the agreement also called for
Bush, as Managing General Partner, "to receive added
compensation if the team were sold for anything above a
modest profit" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 6/18).
VIKINGS: San Antonio business exec Red McCombs, on his
interest in the Vikings: "Why I am I interested in
Minnesota? Because that's where the team is. There aren't
many teams, and this is one that's for sale, and this is one
that I believe has great potential. But I have absolutely
no thought that the Vikings should be anywhere but
Minnesota. Do I see that they have some problems, some
obstacles? Yes. Somehow, they are going to have to enter
the era of new facilities" (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 6/18).
...Former Vikings QB Tommy Kramer "would like to play a role
in the Vikings organization" if his friend McCombs
successfully bids for the team 1 (STAR TRIBUNE, 6/18)....In
Minneapolis, Jerry Zgoda reports that members of the
Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission "endorsed" T-
Wolves Owner Glen Taylor as their pick to become the
Vikings' next owner (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 6/18).
NOTES: In Baltimore, last night's crowd of 48,269 was
the largest for a regular-season game in Camden Yards
history, and the 144,318 total for the Yankees-O's series
was the best ever for a three-game series (SUN, 6/18).
...Pat Croce yesterday said he had reached a handshake deal
with 76ers Chair Ed Snider to return as team president
(PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 6/18)....The NHL Kings will unveil
new uniforms Saturday. One of the models is Patrick
Warburton -- Puddy on NBC's "Seinfeld" (L.A. TIMES, 6/18).