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Oakland Ballers get approval to renovate West Oakland park ahead of opener

MLB barrier breaker among 3 tryout players signed by Oakland Ballers
MLB barrier breaker among 3 tryout players signed by Oakland Ballers 00:56

OAKLAND -- The Oakland City Council on Tuesday unanimously approved the Oakland Ballers' plan to spend $1.6 million in upgrades to Raimondi Park, allowing the independent professional baseball team to play its inaugural 48 home games at the West Oakland park.

The team said the money comes from private investors. The home opener is scheduled for June 4.

"We're so grateful to the community members who helped us bring this plan forward," said Paul Freedman, co-founder of the Ballers, in a statement. "As we gear up for the season ahead, we're excited not just to play baseball, but also to show the world what Oakland can build."

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The Ballers will be the first West Coast team in the independent Pioneer League.

The ordinance giving the Ballers access to the field won't become official until the council does a second reading of the ordinance at its April 30 meeting. Then the team has a little more than a month to work on the park.

Raimondi Park, Oakland Ballers
An artist's rendition of the planned revitalization of Raimondi Park for the Oakland Ballers baseball team. Oakland Ballers

City Councilmember Rebecca Kaplan called the renovations a "vital improvement project."

"I congratulate the Oakland Ballers baseball team for their dedication to community and activating public spaces and welcome them to Oakland for the launch of their team this 2024 season," Kaplan said in a statement. 

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