Judge dismisses most of San Jose lawsuit over Oakland A's move

Fri Oct 11, 2013 9:12pm EDT
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By Dan Levine

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - A U.S. judge dismissed on Friday several claims in the city of San Jose, California's lawsuit against Major League Baseball, which alleged the league violated antitrust laws over a proposed move by the Oakland Athletics team to San Jose.

U.S. District Judge Ronald Whyte said San Jose could move forward with claims that MLB interfered with an option agreement between the city and the A's on land for a new stadium.

Phil Gregory, an attorney representing the city, called the ruling a "big victory" because San Jose could still pursue damages worth billions of dollars.

However, because of Whyte's antitrust dismissal, an effort by the city to obtain a court order to allow an A's move to San Jose could no longer be pursued, he said.

Gregory said the city has not decided whether to immediately appeal that part of Whyte's ruling.

John Keker, who represents the league, said he is "confident" that the remaining interference claim would eventually be dismissed as well.

Whyte's decision came a day after the club's 2013 season ended at the hands of the Detroit Tigers.

The Oakland A's have struggled for years with weak ticket sales in the Oakland Coliseum, which the A's share with the Oakland Raiders of the National Football League.   Continued...