After a whirlwind winter of wheeling and dealing, in which he traded three All-Star pitchers and signed both Cuban expatriate, Yoenis Cespedes, and MLB renegade Manny Ramirez, Billy Beane went to Hollywood for the Oscars last week as a guest of Brad Pitt (who played him in a 2011 film) and Sony Pictures, with visions of one day soon taking his revised on-field version of “Moneyball” to San Jose.
Unfortunately, the “Moneyball” film came up empty with the Academy Award voters, and the same fate beckons for Beane and Oakland A’s owners Lew Wolff and John Fisher in their determined effort to move to a new stadium in Hi-Tech haven. The latter prospect, in which, for a variety of reasons, MLB is going to uphold the San Francisco Giants’ territorial rights in San Jose, will be especially disheartening for Beane. The man behind “Moneyballl” essentially blew up his pitching staff, trading his 1-2 starters, Gio Gonzalez and Trevor Cahill, to the Washington Nationals and Arizona Diamondbacks, respectively, and shipped closer Andrew Bailey to the Red Sox — for a bushelful of prospects and young players. All the deals were designed to have a contending-ready team in three years when, presumably, the A’s would be liberated from the gloomy, outmoded Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum and on their way to San Jose.