Athletics to Sacramento: What temporary relocation in 2025 means for Las Vegas stadium, Giants’ Triple-A team

The A’s are leaving Oakland. And the move is happening faster than many thought it might.

The franchise is temporarily relocating to West Sacramento starting in the 2025 season as it prepares for its eventual permanent relocation to Las Vegas, it announced Thursday. The Athletics will play in Sutter Health Park, the home of the Sacramento River Cats, home of the Giants’ Triple-A team.

The news ends speculation that the city of Oakland might extend the lease on the Oakland Coliseum, which is set to expire after 2024. 

“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. Throughout this season, we will honor and celebrate our time in Oakland, and will share additional details soon,” owner John Fisher said in a statement. “We extend our appreciation to the Kings and the City of West Sacramento, and look forward to making Sutter Health Park our home until our new ballpark opens in Las Vegas.”

The City of Oakland had reportedly proposed the Athletics pay $97 million for an extension of up to three years with an opt-out after three seasons, but the two sides could not come to an agreement, per KRON 4.

MORE: Chiefs, Royals stadium updates after Missouri residents reject tax

The city had originally included provisions in the offer that the A’s leave behind the name and color behind, and that MLB guarantee Oakland would receive an expansion team, according to ESPN. However, NBC Sports reported the latter two demands were both abandoned by the city.

Here’s what you need to know about the A’s move to West Sacramento.

Athletics to Las Vegas timeline

The largest takeaway from the West Sacramento move is the timeline for the Athletics arriving in Las Vegas.

The A’s announced the 2025-27 seasons will all be played at Sutter Health Park. There is also an option for the team to play in 2028 as needed. That means the team is setting 2028 as the earliest date it will have the stadium in Las Vegas ready and 2029 as another possibility if the stadium takes longer.

Nevada and Major League Baseball have all approved the groundwork for the Athletics to move to Las Vegas, with the state legislature and governor approving $380 million in taxpayer money to pay for the $1.5 billion stadium in Sin City.

MORE: MLB fans comparing A’s Las Vegas stadium to Sydney Opera House

There is no doubt the Athletics are leaving Oakland and heading to Las Vegas. This will be the final year the A’s are playing in the Oakland Coliseum. But when exactly the Las Vegas era will begin is a bit more uncertain as things stand, even if the Sacramento move provides a bit more clarity in when the team expects the new stadium to open.

Sutter Health Park capacity

Sutter Health Park has a capacity of 14,000 fans.

That is a major drop-off from the 63,000 capacity listed as the amount of patrons the Oakland Coliseum can hold, though that number typically is much lower due to the tarps placed on the upper deck seating.

Sutter Health Park dimensions

The new home of the Athletics is 330 feet to left field, 403 feet to center and 325 feet to right. 

By comparison, it is 330 feet to left, 400 feet to center and 330 feet to right at the Oakland Coliseum, meaning there is unlikely to be a major change in the dimensions between the current home of the A’s and the soon-to-be temporary home of the A’s.

MORE: Everything to know about Astros’ Ronel Blanco, hurler of 2024’s first no-hitter

Sutter Health Park location

The home of the Sacramento River Cats is located in West Sacramento, Calif., a city in Yolo County that is separated by the capital of California by the Sacramento River. 

The stadium is exactly 68.03 miles away from Oakland Coliseum, as the crow flies, while Google Maps lists the drive as about 1 hour and 30 minutes with limited traffic. 

Who are the Sacramento River Cats?

The River Cats are the Triple-A affiliate of the San Francisco Giants. They have been a Triple-A team since 2000, the year after the Vancouver Canadians was bought and moved to West Sacramento.

Sacramento was originally the affiliate of the Athletics from 2000 to 2014, but changed Bay Area parent teams in 2015. The Athletics’ new Triple-A team became the Nashville Sounds for four years before they took over the Las Vegas Aviators in 2019.

Athletics attendance vs. River Cats

So far in 2024, the Athletics have averaged a paltry 6,438 fans in attendance for their seven home games, according to ESPN. The year prior, the A’s averaged 10,275 fans per game, the worst in baseball by over 4,000 fans.

In Sacramento, attendance averaged 5,177 fans per home game in 2023, which ranked 32nd in the minors, per Ballpark Digest. The No. 1 minor-league team in attendance was the Lehigh Valley IronPigs, which averaged 7,990 fans per game.

Source

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *