Athletics Las Vegas Ballpark

MLBPA chief issues stern declaration on A's temporary home decision

NBC Universal, Inc.

As the Athletics' Las Vegas relocation process chugs along, the team still doesn't know where it will play once its lease to play at Oakland Coliseum expires following the 2024 MLB season.

While the A's reportedly are exploring several sites for their temporary home from 2025-2027, with their new stadium along The Strip anticipated by 2028, Major League Baseball Players Association executive director Tony Clark is growing tired of the uncertainty.

“It needs to get done,” Clark told the San Francisco Chronicle's John Shea. “Players need to understand and appreciate both in the near term and longer term as they make decisions about their careers what tomorrow is going to look like in that regard.

“You would think there would be more control over the decisions that are made here. But unfortunately, it has dragged on to where questions remain. I remain hopeful that sooner rather than later something a little more concrete comes to fruition so we can have some conversations at that point in time with the league as opposed to wondering what next year or the next two years or perhaps even the next three years are going to look like.”

While Sutter Health Park in Sacramento originally was reported to be a front-runner in the A's search for a temporary venue, with a park in Utah also under consideration, the team is focused on playing in Oakland at the Coliseum until its new stadium is ready in four years, Las Vegas Review-Journal's Mick Akers reported Friday, citing a person with knowledge of the situation.

All of the unknowns, from the actual move to Vegas to where the A's will play in between, certainly did hinder the team in MLB free agency this offseason, as Clark hinted at.

"We have one more year left to play in our current stadium," A's general manager David Forst said at the MLB Winter Meetings in December. "Then three more years of uncertainty. And all of that affects what we can and will do on the field.

"Specifically, when I talk to a free agent about a two-year deal, the question comes up about where we're playing in the second year of the deal, and we don't have an answer for that yet. We feel that in all the conversations we have."

In speaking to Shea, Clark stated the topic is of great concern to players already on the team, too -- a situation he noted would make it "nearly impossible" to create a 2025 schedule if the union doesn't know where the A's are playing.

“Perhaps unsurprisingly, players had questions,” Clark told Shea after union reps met with A's players at spring training. “We know that management here is having some conversations with players, so it’s just an ongoing dialogue that you would like to see come to some higher level of clarity than what we’ve got right now.”

For the players, fans and the rest of the league, it could be some time before that clarity comes.

Contact Us