Athletics Poised To Leave Oakland
The Oakland Athletics are poised to be the next in a string of sports teams to leave the city, as on Wednesday they announced they will “explore other markets.” The likeliest home is the city of Las Vegas, as it attempts to vulture another California sports team. The other teams in the running to house the team include Portland, Vancouver, Nashville, Charlotte and Montreal, according to ESPN’s Jeff Passan.
The aspect of Oakland that spurred the sudden change wasn’t the city or the fans, but instead the want for a new ballpark. The Athletics’ current home is the Oakland Coliseum, which has served as home for the ball club since the 1960s. A’s president Dave Kaval came out yesterday and said the Coliseum is “not a viable option for the future of the franchise,” a valid critique he’s been trying to address in recent years. Kaval has spearheaded the movement to potentially build a waterfront stadium in downtown Oakland, but the MLB recommended relocation instead.
While the A’s have expressed that remaining in Oakland and building a $12 billion mixed-use development is their priority, the standstill of the project prompted today’s move. The leading contender if the A’s do move: Las Vegas. Plenty of other cities would welcome the team, too.
BREAKING: The Oakland A’s will start exploring relocation possibilities after Major League Baseball suggested the organization consider moving to other cities if the Howard Terminal stadium proposal is not approved by local politicians.
News at ESPN: https://t.co/7kWHMcyqgB
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) May 11, 2021
“Today, Major League Baseball instructed the A’s to begin exploring other markets while we continue to pursue the Oakland waterfront ballpark project,” Kaval said in a statement. “This is not an easy directive for our fans to hear. …The time is here for a decision on our future, and it is unclear to us and MLB whether there is a path to success for the A’s in Oakland.”
— Dave Kaval (@DaveKaval) May 11, 2021
As aforementioned, The Athletics are the only professional sports team left in Oakland. The Warriors and Raiders were the two other squads in town, until the Raiders moved to Las Vegas and the Warriors ventured into San Francisco.