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L.A. Times Reports A’s Ownership Seeking $500M In Investment To Build Las Vegas Ballpark

 Leif Skodnick  |    Apr 30th, 2024 4:19pm EDT

The A’s drew 7,133 to the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on June 15, 2023, the day after the Nevada Legislature approved $385 million in state funding for a ballpark on the Las Vegas Strip. (Photo: Leif Skodnick/World Baseball Network)

The Los Angeles Times reported Sunday that Oakland Athletics have engaged Galatioto Sports Partners to solicit investment in the Major League Baseball franchise to help fund the construction of a new ballpark in Las Vegas.

The A’s are playing their 2024 home schedule at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum. They will relocate to Sutter Health Park in West Sacramento, Calif., for the 2025-27 seasons while a 30,000-seat ballpark is constructed in Las Vegas.

The Las Vegas ballpark, expected to cost $1.5 billion, will receive approximately $380 million in public funding via tax credits and county-issued bonds, with the A’s covering the remainder. A’s owner, John Fisher, has to disclose the financing plan for the remainder of the construction cost to access the public funding.

According to the Los Angeles Times, the club has hired Galatioto Sports Partners to bring in investors to raise $500 million for the ballpark in exchange for an ownership stake in the A’s. Fisher has been looking to sell a minority stake in the club for several months.

Galatioto Sports Partners is a multi-pronged firm with three subsidiaries that brokers franchise sales, financing, and securitization for clients in all four major leagues in North America and internationally.

MLB owners approved the A’s move to Las Vegas in November 2023 but has met opposition both in Oakland, where fans have boycotted the team’s games and in Las Vegas, where the Nevada State Education Association, the state’s teacher’s union, filed a lawsuit in February seeking to block public funding for the new ballpark.

With an average attendance of 6,049 at 14 home games so far this season, the A’s rank last in attendance in MLB, drawing less than half the average attendance of the team ranked ahead of them, the Miami Marlins, who are averaging 13,561 fans a game.

Meanwhile, all the wrangling has delayed the start of construction on the Las Vegas ballpark, which is slated to be built on nine acres of land on the site of the Tropicana, a casino hotel that opened in 1954 and closed earlier this month. When public funding was approved, Steve Hill, the chairman of the Las Vegas Stadium Authority and the president of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, told legislators that construction would start in “late 2024.”

Sutter Health Park, the home of the Sacramento River Cats, the Triple-A affiliate of the San Francisco Giants, will be the A’s home for the 2025-27 season. The ballpark seats 14,000, and the River Cats plan to play there on days when the A’s are on the road.

Only two MLB franchises have moved in the last 52 years; the Washington Senators relocated to the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex in 1972 and became the Texas Rangers, and the Montreal Expos relocated to Washington, D.C. for the 2005 season, becoming the Washington Nationals.

When the A’s leave Oakland, the city the franchise has called home since 1968, Sacramento will be the fourth city the franchise has called home, joining Philadelphia, where the team played from 1901-53; Kansas City, where the team played from 1954-67.