Leading up to this season, the Oakland A’s are taking some extensive steps to increase their outreach to their fan base and the Oakland community.
Under president Dave Kaval, who was named to the position last fall, the A’s have made it clear that they want to improve the fan experience at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum. Over the last several months, the team has introduced several plans–including one of the most recent, reduced beer prices–that will make the experience at the Coliseum a little different in 2017.
Aside from the focus on the ballpark, the A’s have been making an aggressive marketing push through the theme Rooted in Oakland, which includes several new television ads. This comes as the A’s continue their search for a new ballpark in Oakland. With the 51-year-old Coliseum’s condition still an issue for the A’s and Major League Baseball, the team is considering several locations within the city.
If the A’s ultimately secure a new ballpark in Oakland, it could come as the city’s other major sports franchises move on. The NBA’s Golden State Warriors are proceeding with plans to move to the Chase Center in San Francisco, and are expected to open that venue by the 2019-2020 season. The Raiders, meanwhile, could soon have their proposed relocation to Las Vegas considered by the NFL.
The A’s, for their part, are not focusing on what could happen to Oakland’s other teams, and say they want to continue to emphasize their commitment to the community. More from The Mercury News:
The A’s are doing their best to downplay the exit plans of the Warriors and Raiders and focus on their efforts to become Oakland’s flagship pro sports franchise.
“The organization has a good opportunity to get a lot of mind-share in Oakland and the surrounding areas,” said Jim Leahey, A’s vice president of sales and marketing. “I’m sure you’ve heard (Kaval) talk about all the improvements, so there’s a midterm plan which is announce the site we’re going to focus on and let’s build a new ballpark for the fans. Then there’s the short-term plan, which is create 2,500 projects in three months and make them happen by Opening Day to show the fans that we’re really going to do everything we can to make the experience good while we are where we are.”
Leahey added that with A’s having already spent 50 years in Oakland, the team wants to instill the notion that they’ll be here “for another 50-100 years.”
This coming season will be the A’s 50th in Oakland, as the team arrived from Kansas City for the 1968 campaign. They have played at the Coliseum throughout their time in Oakland.