Oakland Athletics is a professional baseball team and member of MLB. It is part of 8 AL charter franchises and a member of the Western division. The team was created in 1901. Oakland Athletics is located in Oakland, California.
It began its sports career as Philadelphia Athletics in Philadelphia, where it stayed up to 1954. After this, the team was renamed Kansas City Athletics as it has moved to Kansas City. There the club had been playing since 1955.
On October 18, 1967, AL managers allowed it to move to Oakland for one season. But Stuart Symington, Senator for Missouri, claimed that it was the happiest town in the world, and by 1973 a new ballpark would be constructed there. So the franchise was left in Oakland.
Ben Shibe was the club founder. He managed it from 1901 till 1922. Then Connie Mack became its manager. He had been leading Oakland Athletics for 32 years. After this, he sold it to Arnold Johnson, and the latter sold it to Charlie Finley. This happened in 1981. Walter Haas had managed the franchise (till 1995), Steve Schott and Ken Hofmann (till 2005-го).
On March 30, 2005, the team was purchased by a group managed by developer Lewis Wolff. But actually, it was owned by John J. Fisher, son of The Gap, Inc. founder. As Wolff operated a real estate and construction business, he helped the club find a suitable site for the stadium.
The team name was based on the Athletic Club, which existed in the 60s of the 19th century. By the way, the name has never been changed when the team moved – only the location name has been added.
In 2002 the team won 20 games on end, having broken the record of the American League. This was reflected in books and movies. Oakland won the World Series 9 times and won the American League 15 times.
Since 1993 the club has been using a modernized version of the previous logos. Oakland Athletics logo is a white circle with the letters “A’s” in the middle. The letters are circled with “OAKLAND ATHLETICS” in a wide field. The first part of the name is above, the second one – below, which visually balances the image. The elements have a golden outline.
Meaning and History
Usually, the letter “A” was alternated with an image of a white elephant. The first variant of the Oakland Athletics logo is a graphically stylized name. The second one is a result of the divide between Connie Mack, Oakland Athletics owner, and John McGraw, manager of New York Giants. In 1902 the latter scornfully called the team “white elephants,” alluding that they were not playing but throwing money away. Then Connie Mack accepted the challenge and made a white elephant the logo of his club.
Fourteen logos, an elephant, and the letter “A” are all attributes of the Oakland Athletics team. Since 1901, it has changed many emblems. Such changes are mainly associated with the relocation of the franchise: first, the location was the city of Philadelphia, then – the state of Kansas, in the end – California Oakland. The symbolism has remained divided into two large categories: with an elephant and with a single letter. If in the first half of the sports career, the club did not supplement them with anything, then accompanying elements appeared, more precisely revealing the image.
The first logo of the club, called Philadelphia Athletics, was a printed classical blue letter “A” for “Athletics.”
1902 – 1919
The second club logo remained for 17 years. It was the letter “A,” but a dark-blue one and printed in Old English font.
Connie Mack decided to use a picture of a dark-blue elephant as a 1920 logo.
1921 – 1923
The new artist who drew the next logo with an elephant made it more peculiar as he drew the animal standing on hind legs. Besides that, light-blue was used instead, and white details were added.
1924 – 1927
This time the elephant was made more abstract and black and white. The elephant was still standing on hind legs.
1928 – 1929
Athletics started using blue Old English “A” again adding a thin white and blue outline.
1930 – 1938
The seventh club logo had a new design: the elephant was white with a blue outline and on its fours.
1939 – 1953
The 1939 logo has a nuanced image of a white elephant with a thin black outline. The animal was moving and held a white baseball in its trunk. There is a red fabric with the team’s initials “A’s” on its back.
The last Philadelphia Athletics logo represented an image of a white elephant with a blue outline that balances on a red-and-blue baseball. It held a batt in its trunk and had a piece of red fabric with letters “A’s” the same as before. The black outline of Pennsylvania State is on a baseball.
1955 – 1967
The club moved to Kansas and was renamed into Kansas City Athletics. The Kansas City Athletics logo remained almost the same: an elephant with letters “A’s” on its back holding a batt and balancing on a baseball.
1968 – 1970
A big white baseball with two yellow-green stitches and a green outline was the Oakland Athletics logo. Green letters “A’s” for “Athletics” were drawn on it.
1971 – 1981
The next Oakland Athletics logo resembled the previous one. It is also based on a baseball, but now it became yellow. Letters “A’s” were left in the middle, but now a pair of white tennis shoes appeared on the logo, and The Swingin’ was printed above the letters.
1982 – 1992
The thirteen Oakland Athletics logo represented a simple white circle with a thick, dark-green outline. Yellow letters “A’s” were printed in the middle, and Oakland Athletics were printed in a semi-circle above and below.
1993 – present
Now the variant with a large letter in the middle of a white circle is in use. But besides “A,” it also has a miniature “s” written with an apostrophe. All central elements are outlined with a yellow stripe. Next is a wide dark green stripe with inscriptions. At the top is the word “Oakland” at the bottom – “Athletics.” They are not separated by anything and have an arched shape. A yellow line also surrounds the outer edge.
The current version is a repetition of the previous one with some finishing touches and adjustments. The middle became narrow, and the green field, on the contrary, became wide. The edging palette has changed: in the previous version, it was green, and in the current version, it was yellow.
Font and Color of the Emblem
At the beginning of their sports career, baseball players chose the “A” sign for the logo, which, as today, conveys part of the name – “Athletics.” Then, in 1920, an elephant’s image appeared – a simple outline, as if drawn by a child. Gradually, its outlines changed, improved, and acquired realistic features. As a result, by 1954, the animal began to equilibrate on the ball and hold a baseball bat in its trunk. This image highlighted the high skill of the team.
The elephant image was used until 1967 and replaced by the variation with the letter “A.” The designers combined it with a ball and added it through the apostrophe “s.” The transformation of color and detail continued until 1993 when the circle became a classic rondel.
The lettering in the Oakland Athletics emblem is as close as possible to the chopped Gill Sans Bold Condensed font. They are smooth, elongated sans serif letters. The center “A” is in a custom font designed specifically for the club. It is made in Old English style and has curves.
The emblem contains all the corporate colors proposed in 1963 by the Charlie Finley franchise owner: Kelly white, yellow and green.