The city of Oakland and the Athletics continue their dance when it comes to a potential new ballpark in Howard Terminal. It's been a discussion for months and even years. The other realistic option on the table when it comes to the A's finally freeing themselves from RingCentral Coliseum (many know it simply as Oakland Coliseum) would be a move to Las Vegas.
On that front, the city is totally on board and it sounds like the powers-that-be would rather have the A's than a possible expansion team in the future.
From the Las Vegas Review Journal, which spoke to Derek Stevens, co-owner of the Circa, Golden Gate and The D properties downtown, after he and other local business owners met with the A's earlier this week:
"If Vegas doesn't land the A's, it could impact whether Vegas gets a team anytime in the near future," Stevens wrote in the text. "Having the (MLB) Commissioner (Rob Manfred) waive the relocation fee is huge. When people say they want an expansion team that is a "Vegas Team," people forget the expansion fee will be between $1 billion to $2 billion. Who in Vegas has that kind of money for an expansion fee and THEN have to deal with all the other elements like stadium costs and operating cash?"
It appears that the latest and most realistic proposal would be a north Strip site -- the NFL's Raiders play all the way on the south Strip -- with a 35,000-seat domed stadium on the Las Vegas Festival grounds site, which is on the southwest corner of Las Vegas Boulevard (aka "the Strip") and Sahara Avenue. More from the Review Journal:
"We reinforced our support that we believe the best site is on the Sahara/LV Blvd," [Resorts World Las Vegas president Scott] Sibella wrote in an email. "Having the A's in Las Vegas will be great for the Strip properties and the LV community."
The meeting did not include discussions regarding economics, only that the "A's will have our full support," Sibella added.
No matter how it happens, Major League Baseball would love the A's ballpark situation to be resolved as soon as possible. The preference would be to eventually add two more teams via expansion, but commissioner Rob Manfred has said that he wants the Rays and A's both to nail down their plans for their future ballparks before the league even discusses proceeding with expansion plans. The Rays recently took a step toward securing their future in St. Petersburg, so perhaps (maybe? possibly?) this is a step forward for the A's.