The Oakland Athletics have been considering relocation for quite some time. The home games have become an afterthought in the Bay Area, and now all signs point to them moving to Las Vegas, following in the footsteps of the Raiders. The Athletics have been nearing a deal for a $1 billion stadium in Sin City, which would be a massive move for the franchise and the MLB.
The Athletics and the city of Oakland have been going back and forth for years, but this agreement seals the future. As a result, the franchise sent out a statement saying that they “made a strong and sincere effort to stay.”
The Athletics Move To Las Vegas Is A Win
Nonetheless, the Athletics should follow the Raiders and make a move to Las Vegas, and for a ton of reasons. First, the Athletics have had the lowest fan attendance in baseball, and moving to Vegas would likely do wonders for this team in terms of attendance. The Las Vegas Aviators are the Triple-A affiliate for the Athletics, so having them nearby would be a smart move.
The Athletics and Cincinnati Reds played a game at Las Vegas Ballpark in March, and fans flocked in to see this preseason contest.
The announced attendance for the A’s-Reds at Las Vegas Ballpark is 8,805, considered a sellout. #vegas #oakland #athletics pic.twitter.com/SpznxjmF1W
— Mick Akers (@mickakers) March 4, 2023
Yes, 8,805 fans don’t sound like a lot, but it is considered a sellout for this venue, and keep in mind this was a March game, not even a regular season game. Even more eye-popping is the side-by-side comparisons of the Athletics attendance in Oakland and the Aviators’ attendance during a span in April of 2022:
Fan Attendances in 2022
Las Vegas Aviators (Triple-A MiLB)
4/5 – 8,475
4/6 – 5,286
4/7 – 6,651
4/8 – 7,649
4/9 – 7,982
4/10 – 6,998
4/19 – 5,607
4/20 – 5,174
Oakland Athletics (MLB)
4/18 – 17,503
4/19 – 3,748
4/20 – 2,703
— Dan Clark (@DanClarkSports) April 21, 2022
MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred is on board the Athletics making a move to Las Vegas as well, which is a massive voice of support (h/t Mick Akers of the Las Vegas Review-Journal)
“We support the A’s turning their focus on Las Vegas and look forward to them bringing finality to this process by the end of the year.”
Raiders owner Mark Davis is not entirely pleased with the move and sounded off after some issues with the way things ended for the Raiders in Oakland.
Athletics New Stadium Is A Perfect Location
The Athletics’ new ballpark being discussed would be nearby T-Mobile Arena and Allegiant Stadium, making it easy for all sports fans to partake in an MLB game.
The Athletics’ situation is much different than the Raiders — at least the Raiders had fans coming to games during their tenure in Oakland. Lately, the Athletics haven’t.
But Las Vegas has quickly become a sports hub, and they added the Las Vegas Golden Knights and the Raiders in the span of a few years. On top of that, the Super Bowl, NFL Draft, Formula 1 Grand Prix, and even the Final Four are some events that Vegas has headlined or will host in the future.
In a 10-year period, Las Vegas will have added:
The Desert Dogs
The Golden Knights
The Pro Bowl
A Super Bowl
An NFL Draft
A Final Four
A Formula 1 Grand Prix
A CFP National Championship pic.twitter.com/K9atunoRX5
— Front Office Sports (@FOS) April 20, 2023
Imagine this: You go to Las Vegas for the Raiders game, and the Athletics play on Saturday. Why not drive down the street and catch a baseball game? Or, you are in town for a UFC fight, and on Friday night, the Athletics play?
It makes sense for Las Vegas and the Athletics, even though Oakland fans won’t be thrilled with another franchise moving out of the city.
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