The MLB world received quite a shock this week when it was reported that the Oakland Athletics could consider relocating. A big reason behind this is because the A’s want to build a waterfront stadium in Oakland, but city council hasn’t been cooperating as much as the team wish they did. It’s basically at the point where if council doesn’t want to discuss a new stadium, the Athletics will look elsewhere.
The Athletics have been playing in Oakland since 1968 and considering how the RingCentral Coliseum is 55 years old now, you can’t fault the team for wanting an upgrade. However, if the team’s proposal to city council is rejected and they do seek to relocate, where could they go? Wherever they move to, it would have to either be 1) a city that the MLB has been to before and knows will succeed or 2) an untapped market that oozes potential.
Keeping that in mind, BetOnline is favoring an Athletics move to Las Vegas at +125 odds. This move makes the most sense because Sin City has quickly been becoming a sports hotbed over the last few years. Since 2017, the city has brought in the NHL’s Golden Knights while the NFL relocated the Raiders from Oakland to Las Vegas last season.
Considering how popular sports and betting is there, moving a baseball franchise to Las Vegas would probably be a financially intelligent move for the MLB.
MLB Odds: Possible Relocation Destinations for the Athletics
Odds via BetOnline as of Thursday, May 13
- Las Vegas (+125)
- Montreal (+500)
- Charlotte (+650)
- Nashville (+650)
- Portland (+750)
- San Antonio (+800)
- Indianapolis (+1200)
Full Athletics relocation odds list available at BetOnline.ag.
MLB Return to Montreal is an Option
At +500 odds, Montreal, Quebec, Canada is the next likely relocation destination for the Oakland Athletics. Montreal has not had an MLB team since the Expos became the Washington Nationals back in 2005. In other words, it’s been a long time coming for Canada to have a second MLB franchise again.
However, it shouldn’t be surprising for people to see that the Athletics could potentially move to Montreal. The MLB has already discussed having the Tampa Bay Rays split half of their future home games there, so it’s clear that the league believes they can handle a franchise to some capacity. Plus, the Toronto Blue Jays usually attract a solid crowd whenever they play exhibition games in Montreal, so it’s likely that a second team could succeed north of the border.
Athletics Odds: Charlotte, Nashville on the Table
The city of Charlotte, North Carolina has +650 odds of landing the Oakland Athletics. For starters, Charlotte is already a baseball city. Minor league baseball has thrived over the years there, with the current team being the Knights, the Chicago White Sox’s Triple A-affiliate. Charlotte’s teams can draw in pretty solid crowds too as they’re typically in the top-10 for average attendance across minor league baseball. If the MLB wants to try a “new” market, Charlotte might be the proper play.
Or, the league could move the Athletics to the city of Nashville (+650), Tennessee. There’s already an “MLB to Nashville” movement that’s been going on, which includes the likes of popstar Justin Timberlake. If more local celebrities or politicians join the effort, it might not be long before a baseball team heads to the Music City.
One thing about the movement is that they want to call their MLB team the “Nashville Stars” to honor the Negro League team that played under the same name. Whether the MLB would be willing to rename the Athletics remains to be seen. However, it’s promising to know that there happen to be as many viable relocations options as there are.