Oakland A’s remove Coliseum ‘Rooted’ sign as Kaval shares plans for season-long ‘celebration’

Oakland A’s remove Coliseum ‘Rooted’ sign as Kaval shares plans for season-long ‘celebration’

Rooted in Oakland no longer, the A’s finally ditched their slogan this week.

The A’s have removed their infamous “Rooted in Oakland” sign that was plastered across the Coliseum and visible from Interstate 880.

A helicopter for ABC 7 caught video of a person on a crane scraping off the vinyl sign into small pieces on Monday. The A’s then replaced the giant sign with several smaller photos of historic moments in A’s history.

Thursday, team president Dave Kaval shared photos of the new signage via social media while saying the 2024 season “will be a celebration of our 50-plus years in Oakland.”

Another “Rooted in Oakland since ‘68” banner on the south entrance to the ballpark remained in place as of Thursday afternoon.

The A’s have been using their “Rooted in Oakland” slogan since 2017, when they announced the advertising campaign in a press release. The campaign “emphasizes the club’s commitment to building a ballpark in its longtime home city,” the team wrote, while Kaval was quoted as saying, “Our fans and community will know that the A’s are truly Rooted in Oakland.”

But after years of failed ballpark proposals and disagreements with the city, the A’s announced their intentions to move the team to Las Vegas last April.

The “Rooted In Oakland” sign is coming down at the Coliseum ahead of Opening Day. pic.twitter.com/WYktJxC9jb

— Casey Pratt (@CaseyPrattABC7) February 26, 2024

Last weekend, Oakland Mayor Sheng Thao explained that she has only spoken with A’s owner John Fisher twice: once when she first entered office in 2021 to discuss building a new ballpark in Oakland, and again last year, when he called to tell her the A’s were leaving.

“I took him on his word (in 2021),” she said Saturday while talking to the hosts of “Foul Territory” at Fans Fest, a celebration of Oakland sports at Jack London Square. “The next time I spoke to him he said, ‘We’re going 100% focus on Las Vegas,’ when we were this close to getting a deal. That goes beyond any sort of respect I have.”

Great looking new sign at the Coliseum honoring our many historic moments in Oakland! @Athletics The 2024 season will be a celebration of our fifty plus years in Oakland! See you at the ballpark! pic.twitter.com/f2AJduOOSU

— Dave Kaval (@DaveKaval) February 28, 2024

The 2024 season will be the A’s 57th and possibly final year at the Coliseum.

The team’s lease expires at the end of the season and Thao has made it clear she isn’t willing to extend it unless MLB meets her lofty demands, which include a guarantee of an expansion team, and the team name and logo remaining with the city.

Given the near-impossibility that MLB meets those demands, the A’s are expected to leave Oakland to play in a Triple-A ballpark in either Sacramento or Salt Lake City, though they’d need to have that plan approved by the MLB Players Association. MLBPA executive director Tony Clark has publicly expressed his doubts.

Former A’s players Trevor May, Grant Balfour and Coco Crisp also shared their concerns while speaking at Fans Fest.

Asked if he thought players would approve of that decision, May said, “No. That sucks.”

Playing in a minor league park “doesn’t seem right,” Balfour said.

“Personally, I wouldn’t like it,” Crisp said.

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All three players also said they’d play baseball in any stadium, but noted that big leaguers should be playing in big league parks.

And despite the Coliseum being outdated, the players said they enjoyed the fan experience there.

“I loved walking out on that field,” Balfour said. “It’s a great pitchers’ ballpark. There’s so much history. I’ll be sad to see them go. I’d rather see Vegas get a new team and start fresh.”

Opening Day for the A’s will be March 28 at the Coliseum. Fans are planning to boycott the game by showing up to party in the Coliseum parking lot and refusing to buy tickets to go inside for the game.

Oakland Athletics staff, Alison Chapot, and her dog Friday, look at the historic photos of the Oakland Athletics replacoing the “Rooted in Oakland” banner from the Coliseum in Oakland, Calif., on Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2024. (Ray Chavez/Bay Area News Group) 
 The fence that had the three Oakland professional team logos -Raiders, Warriors and A’s- seen from the 66th Avenue entrance parking lot, have been removed as the Oakland Athletics is ready to welcome fans to Coliseum in Oakland, Calif., on Thursday, March 25, 2020. The Oakland Athletics opening season game against the Minnesota Twins scheduled for March 26, has been postponed for another day due to the coronavirus outbreak. (Ray Chavez/Bay Area News Group)