The $1.5 billion move of the Oakland Athletics to Las Vegas has been unanimously approved by the Major League Baseball team’s owners, sealing the sport’s first move since 2005, according to several media outlets familiar with the matter. mood.
The people spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the league had not yet announced the results.
A vote of 75 percent of the 30 teams was needed to make the move, which was approved by baseball commissioner Rob Manfred on Thursday at Globe Life Field – home of the World Series champion Texas Rangers – in Arlington, Texas.
After years of complaints about the Oakland Coliseum and the inability to get government support for a new ballpark in the Bay Area, the A’s plan is to move to a stadium to be built on the Las Vegas Strip with $380 million in public financing approved by the Nevada government.
The A’s lease at the Coliseum expires after the 2024 season and it remains unclear where the team will play before a new stadium opens, not until 2027 at the earliest.
The A’s will end their 55-year association with the city of Oakland after settling there in 1968
The A’s will now begin construction on their new ballpark at the Tropicana location in Las Vegas
Las Vegas will be the fourth city for a franchise that played in Philadelphia from 1901-54, moved to Kansas City for 13 seasons and arrived in Oakland in 1968. The new stadium will be the team’s fifth stadium, following Columbia Park (1901 to 2008). ), Shibe Park (1909-54), Memorial Stadium (1955-67) and the Coliseum.
In 2006, the A’s proposed a ballpark in Fremont, about 25 miles south in the East Bay, but abandoned the plan three years later. San Jose, 40 miles south of Oakland, was proposed in 2012, but the San Francisco Giants blocked the site because it was part of that team’s territory.
The A’s selected a site in the Oakland area near Laney College, but it was rejected by the college and neighbors, and subsequently focused on the Howard Terminal area of Oakland. Although some approvals were obtained, a financing plan was never reached.
The team announced on April 19 that it had purchased land in Las Vegas and a month later replaced that site with a deal with Bally’s and Gaming & Leisure Properties to build a stadium on the Tropicana hotel site along the Las Vegas Strip .
Nevada’s legislature and governor approved public financing for a $1.5 billion, 30,000-seat ballpark with a retractable roof that will be close to Allegiant Stadium, where the NFL’s Oakland Raiders moved in 2020, and the T-Mobile Arena, where the current Stanley Cup champion Vegas Golden Knights began play in 2017 as an expansion team.
While San Francisco/Oakland/San Jose is the tenth largest television market in the US, Las Vegas is the fortieth. Baseball Players Association head Tony Clark last month questioned whether the shift to a smaller city would put the team on the path of needed continued relief under MLB’s revenue-sharing plan.
MLB can control city changes thanks to the antitrust exemption for sports granted by a 1922 U.S. Supreme Court decision.
Over the past half century, the NFL has seen moves from the Raiders (Oakland to Los Angeles, back to Oakland and then Las Vegas), the Colts (Baltimore to Indianapolis), the Cardinals (St. Louis to Phoenix), the Rams (Los Angeles to St. Louis and back to LA), the Oilers (Houston to Nashville) and the Chargers (San Diego to Los Angeles).
More to follow…