A crowd of over 27,000 devoted A’s fans packed the Oakland Coliseum on Tuesday night in a “reverse the boycott” to demonstrate their discontent with the team’s potential move to Las Vegas and to dispel a position advanced by the club’s ownership that the move is partly due to a waning fanbase in Oakland. This A’s average attendance for home games this season sat at 8,555 prior to last night’s game—the lowest in the majors.
Fans held tailgates all around the Coliseum’s parking lot, including the Oakland 68’s, a nonprofit, independent fan group that organized a fan-funded giveaway of 7,000 Kelly green t-shirts emblazoned with the word “SELL” on the front, which could be seen throughout the Coliseum including behind home plate during the game’s television broadcast.
At the beginning of the 5th inning, fans stood up for a moment of silence to honor the A’s 55 years in Oakland and protest the move. Most fans took part, with the silence eventually being broken by chants of “Sell the team!” “Stay in Oakland!” and “F*** Fisher!”—the latter a reference to the team’s majority owner, John Fisher—that drowned out the announcers and the players’ walk-up music.
During the game, the A’s stadium camera crew didn’t show any fans wearing the “sell” t-shirts on the big screen, opting instead to show clips of fans from past games.
The Oaklandside’s visual journalist, Amir Aziz, was on hand to capture still images and videos of the unprecedented protest, beginning in the early afternoon during the pregame tailgates and rallies in the parking lot, and into the evening inside the Coliseum during the game (which the A’s won in a nail-biter, 2-1).
Amir Aziz is a photographer and videographer from Oakland, California. Using photography as his primary medium, Amir documents life and times in his community and the rapid changes in his environment. He's covered music events and social justice movements in the U.S. and abroad for local and international publications. Before shelter-in-place, he traveled to over 10 countries producing multimedia projects juxtaposing the experiences of locals elsewhere to those in his hometown of Oakland. Amir hopes to continue to bridge the gap between African diaspora communities and oppressed groups in the world through multimedia storytelling.