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Sunday, February 25, 2024
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Where Will the A’s Play After Next Year? It’s Getting Complicated

  • Roster development, RSN money further cloud an already-complex decision.
  • Timetable to selection team's location for 2025-27 seasons remains uncertain.
Oakland Athletics center fielder Esteury Ruiz (1) tosses the ball to left fielder Brett Rooker (25) after making an out against the Atlanta Braves during the ninth inning at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum.
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

The Oakland A’s were already facing a complex question on where to play for the 2025-27 seasons, while a planned $1.5 billion stadium is built in Las Vegas. Now there are two further complications.

The club’s interim location has largely been narrowed to three main options: the club’s current Oakland Coliseum, the San Francisco Giants’ Oracle Park, or Las Vegas Ballpark, currently home to the team’s Triple-A affiliate, the Las Vegas Aviators. 

Each option, though, carries its own set of issues, including facility conditions, climate, and scheduling, as well as the need to gain MLB Players Association approval in any scenario. 

Meanwhile, A’s GM David Forst acknowledged in a new interview with the San Francisco Chronicle that the still-unanswered location question is hampering his team’s ability to develop roster plans, both in the short- and long-term.

“It’s not ideal,” Forst said. “We’re sort of taking it a year at a time right now, because it’s hard to plan for even ’25 without knowing what that looks like from a venue standpoint or revenue standpoint, any of those things.”

Media Money

The A’s see the Bay Area options as their preferred interim home, as each would allow the club to retain contracted rights fees from NBC Sports California and delay the need to strike a new rights deal elsewhere, in an uncertain media landscape. 

The club reportedly received $67 million from the RSN this year — a figure greater than their league-low 2023 player payroll of $62.2 million — and those payments require the A’s to play at least half their games in Northern California.

Since the A’s current Coliseum lease expires after the 2024 season, and because the new Las Vegas ballpark isn’t projected to open until ’28, the temporary location issue has been a massive problem in the relocation saga. Any timetable for making a decision also remains uncertain.

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