Before the arrival of the Oakland A's, baseball in the town had withered to Little League and play on school yards. The Oakland Oaks franchise had outgrown its ball park in Emeryville by 1957. The team was dismantled and relocated to Vancouver, British Columbia, and rebranded the Vancouver Mounties.
Charles O. Finley, a Chicago-based businessman, who had bought the Kansas City Athletics in 1960, was eager to leave Kansas City after a few short years because he felt the community did not offer the financial support or promotion he thought the team deserved. Major League Baseball officials denied Finley's efforts to relocate the team to a better market and forced him to sign a three-year lease, then a four-year lease. He also had a contentious relationship with the Kansas City press and with fans.
In 1967 when his lease expired Finley moved the team to Oakland. He listed four reasons for choosing Oakland:
- The Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum sports complex provides the finest facilities
- The Bay Area climate is ideal for baseball