A’s fans come out en masse for reverse boycott and tell owner John Fisher to sell

Reuben Ortiz of Modesto, Calif., holds a sign outside Oakland Coliseum to protest the Oakland Athletics' planned move to Las Vegas, before a baseball game Tuesday. (AP Photo/Jed Jacobsohn)

OAKLAND, Calif. — Furious Oakland Athletics fans came en masse with a single message to owner John Fisher: “SELL.”

Buddies Brian Guido and Scott Finney of Sacramento each took off early from work Tuesday because there was no way they were going to miss the festivities a couple of hours away in Oakland.

ADVERTISING


“I’ve been to only one game this year. I saw this game and I knew I had to come because I knew it was going to be very monumental and would send a message to the owner that this is what the fan base wants,” Finney said. “They want the ownership to sell the team so they can remain in Oakland.”

Thousands of frustrated, heartbroken A’s fans arrived early for tailgating and solidarity at the Oakland Coliseum ahead of a Rays-A’s matchup to both celebrate their team and protest a planned relocation to Las Vegas. They called it a reverse boycott aimed at bringing as many people as possible to the ballpark, complete with bright green “SELL” T-shirts made by local company Oaklandish going to the first 7,000 to claim the fan-planned giveaway.

A “We Are Here!” poster provided specific instructions for every inning such as chants of “Sell the team! Sell the team!” for the first Tampa Bay batter in the top of the inning and “Stay in Oakland!” followed by five claps for the first hitter in the bottom half.

The drummers in right field made a rare return, too.

The A’s announced a couple of hours before first pitch that they will donate all ticket revenue from the game to charity, the Alameda County Community Food Bank and Oakland Public Education Fund — a totat of $811,107.

Mother and son Leslie and Justin Lopez walked together in their SELL T-shirts reflecting on how much the A’s have meant in their lives — 27-year-old Justin has been coming to games since he was 8 months old.

He is devastated every year watching All-Stars depart to bigger markets in free agency or all the other stars get traded away.

“It’s been so sad to witness. We feel like the historically disenfranchised,” Justin Lopez said, embracing his mom.

Toddler Pepito Mendez, 3, of Pittsburg entertained himself through the action tossing a beanbag (featuring an emoji of feces) into the boards covered in facial images of Fisher and team President Dave Kaval.

Father Paco is considering canceling his season tickets for 2024.

“We’re thinking of not re-signing next year because of this,” he said. “Hopefully he sells locally. I wish I had the money for it. It doesn’t look good for us.”

Rays manager Kevin Cash appreciated the passion of Oakland’s fan base.

“A’s fans are good fans. We played here, I think it was in ‘19, in the wild card game and that was one of the best atmospheres I’ve ever witnessed in an opposing stadium,” he said, “so if it’s like that, it should be loud and it should be fun.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the Star-Advertiser's TERMS OF SERVICE. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. To report comments that you believe do not follow our guidelines, email hawaiiwarriorworld@staradvertiser.com.