Indians P Chris Perez “rejoined the Indians on Tuesday following the birth of his daughter and is already taking shots at the team's ownership and front office,” acording to Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland PLAIN DEALER. In a FoxSports.com story “about the success of small market teams such as Oakland, Pittsburgh and Tampa Bay, Perez was critical about the Indians ownership and front office.” Asked about the “difference between the Indians and AL Central rival Detroit, Perez pointed to Indians owner Larry Dolan and Detroit owner Mike Ilitch.” Perez said, “Different owners. It comes down to that. (The Tigers) are spending money. (Ilitch) wants to win. Even when the economy was down (in Detroit), he spent money. He's got a team to show for it. You get what you pay for in baseball. Sometimes you don't. But most of the time you do." Indians GM Chris Antonetti said, “While we work to understand various perspectives, we strongly disagree with Chris' comments. Nonetheless, we are not satisfied with our recent results and our entire organization remains committed to fielding winning teams and that is the standard by which we will continue to operate." Hoynes noted, “Antonetti did talk to Perez." Asked if Perez "would be disciplined, Antonetti said only that the matter would be handle internally” (Cleveland PLAIN DEALER, 9/6).
Jeff Moorad is near a deal to sell the Triple-A PCL Tucson Padres to Mountainstar Sports Group. The estimated $20M transaction also calls for the minor league club to relocate to El Paso, Texas, but the sale is not contingent on approval in a vote next week in El Paso to build a new downtown ballpark. "We're in the ninth inning of that process, and hopefully El Paso will put their final blessings on the deal," Moorad said. "We're excited to have this deal, and we believe the new owners will be great custodians of the franchise." The team will play in Tucson next year and has a lease option for '14, with the lease terms covering an expected ballpark construction period in El Paso. Moorad made one of his first public appearances today at the Bloomberg Sports Business Summit since his bid to buy the Padres from John Moores failed. He declined to comment on that situation or his future business plans. Had a prior effort to build a new ballpark in Escondido, Calif., for the Triple-A club succeeded, Moorad said he and his partners would have entertained keeping the club and working with the parent club and new owner Ron Fowler.
In San Jose, John Woolfork notes the city is “toughening its stance toward opponents" of A's efforts to move from Oakland. San Jose officials have argued the MLB Giants "are chief actors behind local efforts to block an A's downtown ballpark and are moving more aggressively to expose the team's role.” Last week the city filed for a court order “allowing it to examine the organizational structure -- and any Giants ties -- of Stand For San Jose, a community group whose lawsuit over the proposed ballpark has raised questions about the San Jose plan's viability.” Giants Senior VP/Communications Staci Slaughter last year said that the Giants were “among Stand For San Jose's supporters." A source indicated "that is no longer the case" (SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS, 9/5).
BIRD IS THE WORD: In Baltimore, Kevin Cowherd writes with the AL East-leading Yankees in town for a four-game series, “Orioles fans, your time has finally come.” Cowherd: “But it's definitely put up or shut up time, Orioles fans. No more excuses for not supporting a team that has shocked the pundits and delighted its fans for five months now” (Baltimore SUN, 9/6).
KNOWING THEIR LIMITS: In DC, Dan Steinberg noted the Nationals are “announcing a self-imposed season-ticket limit of 20,000 seats in 2013.” Attendance at Nationals Park is “up 27 percent from last season, the second-biggest increase in baseball.” The number of full season-ticket packages sold this year is “believed to be about 12,000, and is no greater than 14,520” (WASHINGTONPOST.com, 9/5).
KEEP ON MOTORING: The Tigers yesterday reached three million tickets sold in advance sales for the ‘12 season. It is the third time in the last six seasons the club has surpassed that mark. The Tigers have sold out 31 games in ’12, marking the second-highest total number of sellouts in club history (Tigers).