Posts Tagged ‘Oakland Athletics’

A major league sports team is closer than ever to relocating to Las Vegas.

Las Vegas has a lot of patience when it comes to waiting for the arrival of a major league sports team.

Back in 2007, an investment group made a pitch to the National Hockey League’s executive committee to bring a team to Sin City, but was not successful. It would be 10 more years before the city would land its first major league sports team and the NHL’s Las Vegas Golden Knights would celebrate their inaugural season in 2017-18.

After a failed attempt to return to Los Angeles in January 2016, the National Football League’s Oakland Raiders in April 2016 proclaimed that they wanted to move to Las Vegas. Nevada and the city really know how to fast track projects, and in October 2016, the state approved financing for a 65,000-seat Las Vegas Raiders stadium and in November 2016 Clark County, Nev., approved a hotel room tax to help finance the stadium. 

The Raiders received approval from the NFL in March 2017 to relocate to Las Vegas, and they played their first game in August 2020 at their newly completed Allegiant Stadium.

Las Vegas has also had its eye on bringing a Major League Baseball team to Southern Nevada when the Montreal Expos were planning to leave Canada, but the team relocated to Washington, D.C., instead in 2004. Developer Chris Milam in 2012 said he wanted to build a stadium in Henderson, Nev., to relocate either the Oakland Athletics or Sacramento Kings, the Las Vegas Sun reported, but that idea never went anywhere.

But 10 years later, the Oakland A’s are getting closer than ever to relocating to Las Vegas after the City of Oakland missed a self-proclaimed deadline to reach an agreement on a new ballpark for the team. Missing the deadline could mean that the new Oakland ballpark proposal is dead.

Oakland’s City Administrator Ed Reiskin at a Sept. 20 Oakland City Council meeting said that the city and team needed to finalize a development agreement for a proposed $12 billion Howard Terminal project, which includes a $1 billion waterfront ballpark, by the following week, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. That week’s window likely closed on Sept. 30.

“If our goal is to have something for the council’s consideration this calendar year, the timeline is very, very tight to do that,” Reiskin said at the meeting.

Without that agreement, a binding vote from the city council this year would be all but out of the question, Reiskin said. The timeline discussed if the development agreement was completed in the city’s timeframe would allow the planning commission to consider the project in October, the community and economic council to review an independent financial analysis of the project in November, with a potential vote by the city council in late November or early December.

Major League Baseball and the A’s have said that a deal needs to be in place by the end of the year for the project to be completed in the near future. The A’s lease at the RingCentral Coliseum runs through 2024, and MLB officials say the team needs to have a new ballpark plan in motion by then.

The A’s have publicly acknowledged that they’re talking with Circus Circus owner Phil Ruffin about building a stadium at the Las Vegas Fairgrounds site adjacent to Circus Circus.

Also, Bally’s, which is about to take over operations at the Tropicana, has acknowledged that it has had discussions with the A’s about building a stadium at that site.

If a deal is reached in either location on the Las Vegas Strip, the team is looking to construct a 30,000-seat stadium with a retractable roof.

The New York Yankees acquired right-hander Frankie Montas and reliever Lou Trivino from the Oakland Athletics on Monday for left-handers Ken Waldichuk and J.P. Sears, right-hander Luis Medina, and second baseman Cooper Bowman, according to a team announcement.

Montas was one of the top starting pitchers available on the trade market after a solid six-year stretch with the Athletics, posting a 35-30 record alongside a 3.70 ERA and 9.3 K/9 in Oakland.

The hard-throwing right-hander gives the Yankees rotation another weapon, joining Gerrit ColeNestor CortesJordan MontgomeryJameson Taillon, and Domingo German.

Montas has roughly $1.7 million of his $5.025-million salary remaining for this campaign, according to MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand. The 29-year-old is arbitration eligible in 2023 before he becomes a free agent at the end of next season.

Trivino owns a 4.04 ERA and 9.5 K/9 in five seasons with Oakland. He’s collected 36 saves over 263 innings throughout his career.

The 30-year-old is owed about $1 million this campaign, per Feinsand. Trivino has two years of arbitration eligibility remaining before becoming a free agent in 2025.

Trivino is the second reliever acquired by Brian Cashman and the Yankees on Monday. New York added right-hander Scott Effross from the Chicago Cubs earlier in the day.

The rebuilding A’s added four of the Yankees’ top-30 prospects in the trade but couldn’t pry away Anthony Volpe, Oswald Peraza, or Jasson Dominguez.

Waldichuk was the No. 5-ranked prospect in the Yankees’ system, according to MLB Pipeline.

The 24-year-old has posted a 6-3 record with a 2.71 ERA and 13.7 K/9 in 17 starts between Double-A and Triple-A this season.

Sears made his big-league debut with the Yankees on April 13. The southpaw went 3-0 with a 2.05 ERA and 0.86 WHIP in 22 innings in New York this campaign. He’s also pitched well in the minors in 2022, authoring a 1.67 ERA and 11.5 K/9 in 43 innings for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

The 23-year-old Medina has spent his entire 2022 campaign with Double-A Somerset, going 4-3 with a 3.38 ERA and 1.19 WHIP in 17 starts. He’s also recorded 81 strikeouts in 72 innings.

The Yankees chose Bowman in the fourth round of the 2021 draft. The 22-year-old Louisville product slashed .217/.343/.355 with 35 RBIs and 35 steals for High-A Hudson Valley this season.

Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred said the Oakland Athletics need to quickly reach a binding agreement for a new ballpark and that relocation could be considered if a deal isn’t struck for a facility in the Bay Area.

“I was at the Coliseum myself recently,” he told the Baseball Writers’ Association of America on Tuesday before the All-Star Game. “The condition of the Coliseum is a really serious problem for us. I’ve said it, this is not news. It is not a major league-quality facility at this point.”

Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf is pushing for approval of a waterfront ballpark at Howard Terminal. The San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission voted last month to reclassify a 56-acre terminal at the Port of Oakland as a mixed-use area where a new ballpark could be built. The team, under controlling owner John Fisher, also has explored a possible new ballpark in Las Vegas.

An Oakland City Council vote on a ballpark is possible later this year.

“Mayor Schaaf continues to work hard to try to get an arrangement, an agreement to develop the Howard Terminal site,” Manfred said. “I’m hopeful that that can still happen. And I said this recently and I’ll repeat, it needs to happen now. It needs to be done.”

The A’s have played at the Coliseum since 1968 and their lease expires after the 2024 season.

After proposing and withdrawing plans for ballparks in Fremont and San Jose, the team announced in November 2018 it had found a waterfront location for a new ballpark at Howard Terminal, close to the Jack London Square neighborhood. The stadium would cost more than $1 billion, with views toward San Francisco, the Bay Bridge and Port of Oakland.

After trading veterans and cutting payroll to a major league-low of $48 million on opening day, the A’s are an AL-worst 32-61 and have drawn a big league-worst 362,756 in home attendance, an average of 8,637.

“I think Oakland, the A’s, face an extraordinarily difficult situation. John Fisher has invested literally tens of millions of dollars over the entire period of my commissionership in an effort to get a stadium done in Oakland,” Manfred said. “I think that negativity always accompanies the situation where players are traded and a club for whatever set of reasons decides to start over. But I think bigger picture, John is committed and has invested really significant dollars in trying to get baseball in Oakland on an even footing, a sustainable footing over the long haul.”

A’s President Dave Kaval said last month he has made weekly trips to Las Vegas, investing time on design work and feasibility studies. Manfred declined to discuss whether MLB would waive charging the team a relocation fee — MLB has not charged relocation fees in the past.

“Mr. Fisher has to make a decision as to whether he wants to make an agreement or can make an agreement that is approved by the City Council that would keep the A’s in Oakland,” Manfred said. “If that’s not possible, we have a process that deals with an application for relocation, and I assume that’s where it goes if in fact no agreement can be made in Oakland.”

Baseball owners have put off possible expansion from 30 teams to 32 until Oakland and Tampa Bay get deals for new ballparks.

“I need to get Oakland and Tampa resolved before we could realistically have a conversation about expansion,” Manfred said.

The Tampa Bay Rays traded for Oakland Athletics catcher/first baseman Christian Bethancourt, the clubs announced Saturday.

Oakland will receive Triple-A outfielder Cal Stevenson and Single-A pitcher Christian Fernandez in return.

Bethancourt has appeared in 56 games for the Athletics this season, his first in the majors since 2017. The 30-year-old is hitting .249/.298/.385 with four home runs and 19 RBIs.

The veteran figures to provide insurance behind the plate while Mike Zunino sits on the IL with a shoulder injury. Francisco Mejia and Rene Pinto have split time at catcher in Zunino’s absence.

The 25-year-old Stevenson is slashing .265/.376/.353 with two homers and 17 RBIs in his first season with the Durham Bulls. Meanwhile, Fernandez, a 22-year-old Venezuelan, is 5-2 with a 2.79 ERA and 87 strikeouts in 16 games, including eight starts for the Charleston RiverDogs.

Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred said the Tampa Bay Rays and Oakland Athletics need to reach new ballpark deals soon and left open the possibility of considering relocation if agreements are not struck.

“There is urgency with respect to Tampa,” Manfred said Thursday during a news conference following an owners meeting. “There needs to be a resolution in the Tampa Bay region for the Rays.”

Tampa Bay’s lease at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida, where the team has played since its inaugural season in 1998, expires after the 2027 season. The Rays said in January that MLB had rejected the team’s plan to split its season between Florida and Montreal.

“Obviously, the end of that lease is a hard deadline, but you need to take into account that stadiums take a little bit of time to build, right?” Manfred said. “So we are getting to the point where wherever it is in the region that has an interest in having 162 baseball games, they need to get to it, get with the club — I know the Rays are anxious to get something done — and see if a deal can be made.”

Asked whether he was considering relocation, Manfred responded: “Right now, I’m focused on Tampa,” putting emphasis on “right now” and later adding he was referring to the region, not the specific side of the bay. “I think a great man once said, all good things must end at some point. And but right now we’re focused on Tampa.”

The Athletics have played at the Coliseum since 1968 and their lease expires after the 2024 season. The A’s have proposed a new ballpark at Howard Terminal and are working with Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf to gain the necessary approvals.

“There is really significant activity in Oakland. The political process has moved along significantly,” Manfred said. “I met with Mayor Schaaf last week. She has done a really good job at moving the process forward in Oakland. But as you all know, California political processes are their own sort of animal. There’s work to do on the Oakland side. I think the A’s prudently have continued to pursue the Las Vegas alternative. We like Las Vegas as a market. Again, it’s in the same category as Tampa. We need a solution in both those markets and the time has come for that solution.”

Oakland has averaged a major league-low of 8,283 fans this season and the Rays are 25th at 13,740, also ahead of Miami, Cleveland and Pittsburgh.

The Oakland Athletics have finally scheduled Dave Stewart’s long-awaited jersey retirement, planning to hold the ceremony on Sept. 11, the team announced, according to Matt Kawahara of the San Francisco Chronicle.

The A’s initially informed Stewart in August 2019 that the club planned to retire his No. 34. However, the pandemic-shortened 2020 season and 2021 campaign – with limited attendance – went by without a ceremony.

Once the 2022 season began without any news of Stewart’s honor, the former World Series MVP said he might not even attend the event due to the delays and lack of communication.

“I have no idea what the A’s are doing. At this point, they can just retire the number with no celebration as far as I’m concerned. Come to the park, and it will be on display with the other retired numbers,” Stewart said last week, according to the Associated Press. “If you find out something before I do, please let me know.”

It’s unclear whether Stewart will walk those statements back and attend the event.

Stewart, an Oakland native, spent eight seasons of his 16-year career with the Athletics. He finished top four in Cy Young voting in four straight seasons, starting with his first full campaign with the A’s in 1987. Though he never won the award, Stewart finished runner-up and earned an All-Star selection in 1989 while leading the club to a World Series championship.

He authored a 3.73 ERA over 257 games, including 245 starts, while posting a 119-78 record during his time in Oakland.

The Athletics host the Chicago White Sox on Sunday, Sept. 11.

The Oakland Athletics traded left-hander Sean Manaea and right-hander Aaron Holiday to the San Diego Padres in exchange for infielder Euribiel Angeles and right-hander Adrian Martinez, according to a team announcement.

Manaea joins a Padres rotation that already includes Yu DarvishBlake SnellJoe MusgroveMike Clevinger, and Chris Paddack.

He’ll start against his old club in a spring training matchup Sunday, according to MLB.com’s Martin Gallegos.

The 30-year-old has pitched with the Athletics for his entire big-league career after they acquired him in a trade with the Kansas City Royals in 2015.

Manaea owns a 50-41 record with a 3.86 ERA and 3.96 FIP in 727 career innings, and he threw a no-hitter in 2018.

The southpaw will earn $9.75 million this year and is set to become a free agent when the season ends.

The A’s drafted Holiday in the 13th round in 2021. The 21-year-old reliever struck out eight hitters in 5 2/3 minor-league innings last season after a solid collegiate career at Old Dominion.

Angeles, 19, heads to Oakland after a promising start to his minor-league career in 2021. The Dominican native slashed .330/.392/.445 with 64 RBIs and 19 steals across two levels. He was the Padres’ No. 12-ranked prospect, according to MLB Pipeline.

Martinez is a 25-year-old starting pitcher from Mexico who’s been with the Padres organization since 2015. He authored an 8-5 record with a 3.38 ERA and 8.8 K/9 in the minors last season. MLB Pipeline ranked him 26th among San Diego’s prospects.

The A’s are currently in rebuild mode, also dealing pitcher Chris Bassitt, first baseman Matt Olson, and third baseman Matt Chapman in the offseason.

Oakland Athletics president Dave Kaval believes Las Vegas will eventually host a Major League Baseball team, and if things go his way, the A’s could call Sin City home.

“We’re negotiating with different parties. We’ve had a lot of detailed meetings on some of these term sheets … pretty shortly, we’re going to be announcing a site in Las Vegas because we have to have a real option down in Las Vegas,” Kaval said on Friday, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal’s Mick Akers.

“I think eventually there will be a Major League Baseball team there, and I think there’s a real chance that it could be the A’s.”

Kaval said the club would announce its preferred Las Vegas site in 4-6 weeks, adding that the organization is very excited about the location.

The news comes after the A’s and the city of Oakland were hit with a lawsuit on Friday relating to the Howard Terminal project in the Bay Area.

The lawsuit, which alleges the stadium’s development would pose environmental risks to the area, could add nine months of unpredictability to the project, increasing the franchise’s chances of looking elsewhere for a new home.

“It just brings more uncertainty and further reinforces why we’re spending so much time and effort, and we have such a sincere interest in Las Vegas as an option for the club,” Kaval said.

In May 2021, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred recommended the team consider relocation following its numerous failed attempts to find a new home in the Oakland area.

The A’s have played at Oakland Coliseum since 1968 and have been trying to build a new ballpark in the city for decades.

The Toronto Blue Jays acquired Gold Glove third baseman Matt Chapman from the Oakland Athletics in exchange for four players, the Blue Jays announced Wednesday.

Infielder Kevin Smith and pitchers Gunnar Hoglund, Zach Logue, and Kirby Snead are headed to Oakland, a source told Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi.

Chapman said he was emotional but excited for the opportunity after learning of the trade Wednesday morning.

Chapman, a two-time Platinum Glove winner, is widely regarded as one of baseball’s best defenders. The 28-year-old amassed 78 defensive runs saved and 49 outs above average in five big-league campaigns with the A’s.

At the plate, he provides the Blue Jays with another powerful bat. The California native hit 27 home runs last season and has 111 career round-trippers.

Toronto gets club control over Chapman for two seasons, with the one-time All-Star projected to earn $9.5 million through salary arbitration.

Smith is the closest to major-league ready of the four players the A’s acquired. The 25-year-old infielder made his big-league debut with Toronto last season, hitting .094/.194/.188 with one home run in 18 games. In the minors, the University of Maryland product slashed .285/.370/.561 with 21 homers and 69 RBIs in 94 games for Triple-A Buffalo.

The 22-year-old Hoglund was the Blue Jays’ first-round draft choice in 2021. The Ole Miss right-hander was 10-5 with a 3.68 ERA and 10.9 K/9 in three seasons with the Rebels and has yet to appear in professional ball.

Logue, 25, was a ninth-round draft choice in 2017. The left-hander pitched well in the minors last season, authoring a 3.67 ERA and 1.11 WHIP in 24 starts split between Toronto’s Double-A and Triple-A affiliates.

The 27-year-old Snead also made his big-league debut in 2021, appearing in seven games with the Blue Jays. He posted a 2.35 ERA and 2.52 FIP in 7 2/3 innings.

Wednesday’s trade is the latest move by the A’s, who previously dealt pitcher Chris Bassitt and first baseman Matt Olson to the New York Mets and Atlanta Braves, respectively.

This also continues a busy offseason for the Blue Jays, who already signed left-hander Yusei Kikuchi and right-handers Kevin Gausman and Yimi Garcia to free-agent deals while giving fellow starter Jose Berrios a seven-year extension.

The Oakland Athletics traded right-hander Chris Bassitt to the New York Mets in exchange for right-handed pitching prospects J.T. Ginn and Adam Oller, the Mets announced Saturday.

Bassitt earned his first All-Star nod in 2021, posting a 12-4 record with a 3.15 ERA and 159 strikeouts over 157 1/3 innings for the A’s.

He was involved in a scary incident in August when a line drive struck him in the face in a game against the Chicago White Sox. The injury sidelined Bassitt until late September.

The 33-year-old is entering the final season of his contract. He’ll bolster a Mets rotation featuring Jacob deGromMax ScherzerTaijuan Walker, and Carlos Carrasco.

MLB Pipeline listed Ginn as the Mets’ fifth-ranked prospect. The 22-year-old posted a 5-5 record with a 3.03 ERA in Single-A.

The 27-year-old Oller went 9-4 with a 3.45 ERA and 138 strikeouts in 120 innings across two minor-league levels last season.