Who is Rhamesis Muncada, and why is he hated in the East Bay?
He’s the South Bay blogger that fans of the A’s love to hate.
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To some East Bay sports fans, blogger Rhamesis Muncada is as popular as a Denver Broncos fan sitting in the Oakland Coliseum’s Black Hole while wearing a bright orange John Elway jersey. He describes himself as a big A’s fan who merely wants what every admirer of the team craves, a new stadium—except not necessarily in Oakland.
The tagline for his popular blog, NewBallpark.org, reads: “[The] never ending quest for a proper home for the Oakland Athletics.” Founded in 2005 as the team was eyeing a move to Fremont, the blog is a detailed look not only at the political and financial aspects of building new stadiums in the Bay Area, but elsewhere. But what makes the site unique is its detailed analysis of regulatory minutiae that comes way before the first shovels hit the ground. For this reason, many local and national sportswriters have referenced Muncada’s work and thereby raised its prominence.
While many Oakland sports fans steeped in both franchises’ lengthy struggle to gain new stadiums in the East Bay, many members of the grassroots movement hold equal parts respect for Muncada’s work while loathing what they describes as his anti-Oakland undertones and his relatively anonymity.
“Who is he? What does he look like?” says Ray Perez, better known as Dr. Death, one of the most well-known members of the menagerie of Raiders fans cheering in end-zone seating known as the Black Hole. “Would he feel comfortable going to a tailgate party at the Coliseum?” Perez, however, is more than just a fan, but something like a self-appointed liaison between hard core Raiders fans and local city and county officials attempting to hammer out a deal to keep Oakland sports franchises in town. Almost always donning his silver and black face paint and array of foam hatchets protruding from a construction helmet, Perez is a fixture at many government meetings regarding various stadium proposals in Oakland.
“This is why I’m done with this guy,” said Perez. “You know who I am. Whatever I talk about, you can come and talk to me about it. If you do that, believe me, you will be held accountable for what you say.” Perez believes Muncada’s analysis is often skewed against anything Oakland. “Eighty percent of what he puts out is fact. He spends the time to read these long reports. I’ll give him credit where credit is due—he’s a good writer, but it’s the 20 percent that is biased.
“He comes across as an independent source, but he’s not,” Perez continued. “His handle should be ‘NewBallpark San Jose’ and then everything would make sense.”
Muncada did not want to become personally involved in the stadium saga and declined an interview for this article. He added that his blog postings speak for themselves. “Everyone has detractors,” said Muncada. “I’m not particularly concerned about it.”
Some still question where Muncada’s true loyalties lie. As a South Bay resident, his support for Oakland Athletics co-owner Lew Wolff’s desire to move the team from Oakland to San Jose is evident to many. Meanwhile, his detractors routinely point out Muncada previously ran a similar website to NewBallpark.org on the team’s previous flirtation with building a stadium in Fremont.