LAS VEGAS — Play ball! In Vegas, that is.
Major League Baseball owners on Thursday approved the relocation to Las Vegas, Nevada, of the Athletics who have called Oakland, California, home since 1968.
Oakland Athletics pitcher Mason Miller takes the field to warm up before a baseball game against the Chicago Cubs, Wednesday, April 19, 2023 | Photo by Godofredo A. Vásquez, The Associated Press, St. George News
According to a press release from MLB.com, the club is set to open its new ballpark for the 2028 season on the Tropicana site on the Las Vegas Strip. The A’s will play their 2024 season at the Oakland Coliseum and are working with MLB to evaluate multiple options for interim play following the 2024 season.
“I want to express my gratitude to the owners and commissioner for their thoughtful deliberation and positive votes in favor of our relocation to Las Vegas,” Athletics Managing Partner and Owner John Fisher said in a statement. “Today marks a significant moment for our franchise, and it’s met with mixed emotions — sadness for this change and excitement for our future. I know this is a hard day for our fans in Oakland.
The city of Oakland and the A’s front office have gone back and forth for several years debating the condition of the aging stadium, which opened in 1966 and served both the A’s for baseball and the Raiders for football. But those talks stalled several times, and no government funding was provided to assist with the construction of a new stadium.
“We made sincere efforts to keep our team in Oakland, but unfortunately, it did not work out,” Fiser said. “I am grateful to the fans who have supported our team throughout the years and the home Oakland provided. The storied history of our franchise includes three cities over the past century: Oakland, along with Kansas City and Philadelphia, will always be part of this franchise’s DNA.”
Dave Stewart, a native of Oakland and a member of the A’s 1989 World Series champion team, told The Associated Press in April that not having a team in Oakland won’t be easy to accept.
“The history, legacy and tradition of the Oakland A’s is no longer going to be there,” Stewart said. “That’s really heartbreaking for me and heartbreaking for the community.”
The new stadium in Las Vegas is expected to cost $1.5 billion. But $380 million in public financing was approved by the Nevada government, a key factor in drawing the team to Las Vegas, according to the AP. The Raiders left Oakland in 2020 and now play at Allegiant Field in Las Vegas.
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