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Oakland A's move to Las Vegas official following vote by MLB owners

Oakland Councilman Noel Gallo says legal action possible following MLB approval of A's move to Vegas
Oakland Councilman Noel Gallo says legal action possible following MLB approval of A's move to Vegas 06:01

The Oakland Athletics have been given the green light to move to Las Vegas following a vote by Major League Baseball owners.

MLB owners voted overwhelmingly Thursday morning to approve the relocation proposal by A's owner John Fisher, CBS Sports reported. The team plans to play at a $1.5 billion facility on the Las Vegas strip in 2028. 

The A's still have one more year on their lease at the Oakland Coliseum. USA Today reported an unidentified MLB owner said the team would play games in Summerlin, Nevada, home of the A's Triple-A team, share Oracle Park in San Francisco with the Giants, and may also play at the Coliseum while the Las Vegas stadium is built.

In June, Nevada's Legislature and governor approved $380 million in public financing for the 30,000-seat ballpark with a retractable roof. Still left to be determined is how Fisher would secure private financing for his share of stadium construction costs. 

The move would mean the A's would become the third professional sports franchise to leave Oakland in the last four years, going from one of the league's largest markets to the smallest market. The Golden State Warriors relocated to San Francisco in 2019 while the Raiders left Oakland for the second time in 2020 to play in Las Vegas.

Las Vegas would become the fourth home for the Athletics, one of the original franchises of the American League. The team was founded in 1901 as the Philadelphia Athletics and in 1955 the franchise moved to Kansas City. The team relocated to Oakland in 1968.

Fisher issued a statement following the vote expressing his gratitude to MLB owners for the relocation vote and saying it came with mixed emotions.

"I know this is a hard day for our fans in Oakland. We made sincere efforts to keep our team in Oakland, but unfortunately, it did not work out. I am grateful to the fans who have supported our team throughout the years and the home Oakland provided."

The MLB owners' vote came despite last-ditch efforts by Oakland officials and A's fans to convince owners to vote against the relocation. Some 15 owners were sent special "Stay In Oakland" boxes from Bay Area fans packed with a green Athletics cap, a baseball card featuring his likeness and a note listing all the reasons he should vote no on the team's planned relocation.

In a statement Thursday, Oakland Mayor Sheng Thao said the outcome of the vote was disappointing but, "we do not see this as the end of the road. We all know there is a long way to go before shovels in the ground and that there are a number of unresolved issues surrounding this move. I have also made it clear to the Commissioner that the A's branding and name should stay in Oakland and we will continue to work to pursue expansion opportunities. Baseball has a home in Oakland even if the A's ownership relocates."

Oakland Mayor Sheng Thao responds to MLB owners vote allowing A's to move to Las Vegas 02:21

Oakland City Councilman Noel Gallo said in an interview on the KPIX Morning Edition that a class-action lawsuit against the Athletics and the MLB was a possibility.

"You know, for me it's about the owners trying to make extra millions of dollars and relocate a professional team from a city and we gotta stop that action, it's an anti-trust law action," said Gallo.

In April, the Athletics announced that the team had purchased land in Las Vegas, then a month later replaced that location with a deal with Bally's and Gaming & Leisure Properties to build a stadium on the Tropicana hotel site along the Las Vegas Strip.

The A's would become the fourth major professional sports team in Las Vegas, joining the NFL's Raiders, NHL's Golden Knights and WNBA's Aces. All of those franchises began play in Vegas in 2017 or later.

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