This will in fact be the final season that the Oakland A’s play in Oakland, as the team officially announced Thursday morning that they’re moving to Sacramento to play in a rinky-dink minor-league ballpark while their Las Vegas stadium gets built.

The biggest complication for the Oakland A’s proposed move to Las Vegas was that the bizarre-looking stadium they want to build there won’t be completed until 2028 at the earliest. And their lease at the Oakland Coliseum expires after this season, which left in limbo where the team would play in 2025, 2026, and 2027. The City of Oakland played hardball with the A’s request to play at the Oakland Coliseum for three more years, demanding $97 million from the team for that three-year extension.

Oakland may have played a little too hard. The Bay Area News Group reports that the A’s took a deal to play those three years in Sacramento instead.


The news first broke Wednesday night, from Sacramento radio host David Weiglein. Weiglein also has the odd Thursday morning revelation that the team won’t go by the name “Sacramento A’s” for those three seasons, but simply as “the A’s.”

ESPN has the detail that A’s president Dave Kaval notified Oakland Mayor Sheng Thao’s chief of staff Leigh Hanson at 7:36 am Thursday morning to say the team was leaving for Sacramento. A’s owner Owner John Fisher called Thao five minutes later, and about ten minutes after that call, the A’s officially announced the move on Twitter in the post seen below.


(In true A’s management fashion, the comments are disabled on that tweet. But the quote-tweets are fucking brutal.)

The A’s will be playing in a “rinky-dink” facility called Sutter Health Park, the current home of the Giants’ Triple-A minor league team the Sacramento River Cats. Sutter Health Park has merely 10,600 seats (the A's current Coliseum seats 63,000), though the park can add a couple thousand more temporary seats on a “party deck” area.

A’s owner John Fisher put out a Thursday morning statement saying, “We explored several locations for a temporary home, including the Oakland Coliseum. Even with the long-standing relationship and good intentions on all sides in the negotiations with Oakland, the conditions to achieve an agreement seemed out of reach. We understand the disappointment this news brings to our fans, as this season marks our final one in Oakland.”


KGO’s Casey Pratt has the additional nugget that during Tuesday’s negotiations, Oakland actually lowered that lease-extension price to $60 million if Oakland could get some expansion team guarantees. But the team brass still went to Wednesday's negotiations with Sacramento officials, and hammered out this arrangement curiously quickly.

“Oakland offered a deal that was fair to the A’s and was fiscally responsible for our city,” Mayor Thao said in her own statement to the Bay Area News Group. “We wish the A’s the best and will continue our conversations with them on facilitating the sale of their share of Coliseum site. The City of Oakland will now focus on advancing redevelopment efforts at the Coliseum.”


Oakland’s most potent wild card in their favor was the A’s $67 million-a-year TV contract with NBC Sports Bay Area. That station will surely cut that amount substantially, though it’s not yet determined by how much.


The deal was reportedly brokered by Sacramento Kings owner Vivek Ranadivé, who also owns the River Cats, and is close friends with Fisher. A’s fans are cursing that man to hell today, which is understandable. And Ranadivé clearly has dreams to own a Major League Baseball team, though the Chronicle speculated last week that Ranadivé could also be part of an ownership team with Warriors owner Joe Lacob to bring an expansion team to Oakland. So that may be his play instead.

As the Bay Area News Group points out, the A’s have flirted with leaving Oakland since almost immediately after moving here from Kansas City in 1968.  Previous team owners have threatened to move to Toronto (in 1970), Chicago (1975), Denver (1978), San Jose (2000 and a few times after that), and Fremont (2006, though they still would have been called the “Oakland A’s”).


The A’s proposed move to Las Vegas could still fall apart. But this certainly seems to mean that the A’s as currently constructed, at least, are finished in the city of Oakland once this season is over. And as of 2025, Oakland will have lost all three of its major pro sports teams in the span of six years.

Related: Las Vegas Mayor Comes Out Swinging Against the Idea of the A’s Moving to Vegas [SFNews]

Image: OAKLAND, CA - AUGUST 5: Fans of the Oakland Athletics in the right field bleachers during the game against the San Francisco Giants at RingCentral Coliseum on August 5, 2023 in Oakland, California. The Athletics defeated the Giants 2-1. (Photo by Michael Zagaris/Oakland Athletics/Getty Images)