Oakland Athletics

Oakland Athletics

Athletics Timeline


Philadelphia Athletics Team Formation

Philadelphia had a new franchise created to compete with the National League’s Philadelphia Phillies. Phillies minority owner Ben Shibe as well as others to invest in the team, which would be called the Philadelphia Athletics. Mack himself bought a 25 percent interest, while the remaining 25 percent was sold to Philadelphia sportswriters Sam Jones and Frank Hough.

Move to Kansas City

In 1954, Chicago real estate magnate Arnold Johnson bought the Philadelphia Athletics and moved them to Kansas City. Although he was initially a hero for making Kansas City a major league town, it soon became apparent that he was motivated more by profit than any regard for the baseball fans of Kansas City.

Charles Finley New Owner

On December 19, 1960, Charles "Charlie" O. Finley purchased a controlling interest in the team from Johnson's estate after losing out to Johnson six years earlier in Philadelphia. He bought out the minority owners a year later. Finley promised the fans a new day. In a highly publicized move, he purchased a bus, pointed it in the direction of New York, and burned it to symbolize the end of the "special relationship" with the Yankees. He called another press conference to burn the existing lease at Municipal Stadium which included the despised "escape clause." He spent over $400,000 of his own money in stadium improvements though in 1962 the city reimbursed $300,000 of this. He introduced new uniforms which had "Kansas City" on the road uniforms for the first time ever and an interlocking "KC" on the cap. This was the first time the franchise had acknowledged its home city on its uniforms. He announced, "My intentions are to keep the A's permanently in Kansas City and build a winning ball club. I have no intention of ever moving the franchise." The fans, in turn, regarded Finley as the savior of Major League Baseball in Kansas City.

A's to Oakland

Then on October 18, 1967, A.L. owners at last gave Finley permission to move the Athletics to Oakland for the 1968 season. According to some reports, Cronin promised Finley that he could move the team after the 1967 season as an incentive to sign the new lease with Municipal Stadium. The move came in spite of approval by voters in Jackson County, Missouri of a bond issue for a brand new baseball stadium, the eventual Kauffman Stadium to be completed in 1973. Then U.S. Senator Stuart Symington of Missouri blasted Finley on the floor of the Senate, calling Oakland "the luckiest city since Hiroshima." When Symington threatened to have baseball's antitrust exemption revoked, the owners responded with a hasty round of expansion. Kansas City was awarded an American League expansion team, the Royals. They were initially slated to begin play in 1971. However, Symington was not willing to have Kansas City wait three years for another team, and renewed his threat to have baseball's antitrust exemption revoked unless the teams began play in 1969. The owners complied.

New Owner Walter Haas

However, during that same season Finley's wife sought a divorce and would not accept part of a baseball team in a property settlement. With most of his money tied up in the A's or his insurance empire, Finley had to sell the team. He agreed in principle to sell to businessman Marvin Davis, who would have moved the Athletics to Denver. However, just before Finley and Davis were due to sign a definitive agreement, the Raiders announced their move to Los Angeles. Oakland and Alameda County officials, not wanting to be held responsible for losing Oakland's status as a big-league city in its own right, refused to let Finley out of his lease with the Coliseum. Finley then looked to local buyers, selling the A's to San Francisco clothing manufacturer Walter A. Haas, Jr., president of Levi Strauss & Co. prior to the 1981 season. It would not be the last time that the Raiders directly affected the A's future.

World Series Winners - 9 World Series Wins

World Series - 1989
The 1989 World Series was played between the Oakland Athletics and the San Francisco Giants. The Series ran from October 14 through October 28, with the A's sweeping the Giants in four games. It was the first World Series sweep since 1976. The four game sweep by the Athletics at the time would mark only the third time in World Series history that a team never trailed in any game (1963, 1966, and 2004 World Series being the only other times this occurred), and the first in the playoff era (post-1968).

World Series - 1974
The 1974 World Series matched the two-time defending champion Oakland A's against the Los Angeles Dodgers with the A’s winning the Series in five games.

World Series - 1973
The 1973 World Series matched the defending champion Oakland A's against the New York Mets with the A's winning in seven games to repeat as World Champions.

World Series - 1972
The 1972 World Series matched the American League champion Oakland A's against the National League champion Cincinnati Reds, with the A's winning in seven games.

World Series - 1930
In the 1930 World Series, the Philadelphia Athletics defeated the St. Louis Cardinals in six games, 4–2. Philly's pitching ace Lefty Grove, and George Earnshaw, No. 2 man in Mr. Mack's rotation, won two games apiece. Earnshaw also pitched seven scoreless innings as Game 5 starter, but ended up with a no-decision as Grove relieved him in the eighth and took the win on Jimmie Foxx's two-run homer in the top of the ninth for the game's only scoring.

World Series - 1929
In the 1929 World Series, the Philadelphia Athletics beat the Chicago Cubs decisively in five games.

World Series - 1913
In the 1913 World Series, the Philadelphia Athletics beat the New York Giants four games to one.

World Series - 1911
In the 1911 World Series, the Philadelphia Athletics beat the New York Giants four games to two.

World Series - 1910
The 1910 World Series featured the Philadelphia Athletics and the Chicago Cubs, with the Athletics winning in five games to earn their first championship.

Lewis Wolff Buys the A's

On March 30, 2005, the Athletics were sold to a group fronted by real estate developer Lewis Wolff, although the majority owner is John J. Fisher, son of The Gap, Inc.'s founder. Wolff, though a Los Angeles businessman, had successfully developed many real estate projects in and around San Jose. The previous ownership had retained Wolff to help them find an adequate parcel on which to construct a new stadium. Because of Wolff's background, rumors that he wanted to move the team to San Jose surfaced periodically upon his purchase of the team. However, any such plans were always complicated by the claims of the cross-bay San Francisco Giants that they own the territorial rights to San Jose and Santa Clara County.

Athletics Primary Logo History Athletics Alternate Logo History No Wordmark Logo History


Team Information Team History

Philadelphia - Kansas City - Oakland

Athletics - The Athletics nickname is one of the oldest in baseball, dating to the early 1860s and the "Athletics" name originated in the term "Athletic Club" for local gentlemen's clubs in Philadelphia. The nickname was retained when the team moved to Kansas City in 1955 and to Oakland in 1968.

Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum
1968 - present
  • O.co Coliseum
  • 2012 - 2015
  • Overstock.com Coliseum
  • 2011
  • McAfee Coliseum
  • 2004 - 2008
  • Network Associates Coliseum
  • 1998 - 2004

*Kansas City*
Municipal Stadium
1955 - 1967

Shibe Park
1909 - 1954
  • Connie Mack Stadium
  • 1953 - 1954

Columbia Park
1901 - 1908

Lewis Wolff
2005 - present
Steve Schott and Ken Hofmann
1995 - 2005
Walter Haas
1981 - 1995
Charlie Finley
1960 - 1981

Arnold Johnson
1954 - 1960
Connie Mack
1922 - 1954
Ben Shibe
1901 - 1922

Established: 1901

League History:
Major League Baseball
2000 - present
American League
1901 - 1999

Team History:
Oakland Athletics
1968 - present

Kansas City Athletics
1955 - 1967
Philadelphia Athletics
1901 - 1954

World Series: 9
1989, 1974, 1973, 1972, 1930, 1929, 1913, 1911, 1910

Retired Numbers:
9 Reggie Jackson
24 Rickey Henderson
27 Catfish Hunter
34 Rollie Fingers
42 Jackie Robinson
43 Dennis Eckersley
- Walter A. Haas, Jr.

Mascots: 1997 - present

The Official Site of the Oakland Athletics

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