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Oakland A’s, Roots fans send a message to John Fisher during the Earthquakes game

An Oakland A’s fan holds up a flag in protest of the A’s move to Las Vegas for a San Jose Earthquakes game against the Oakland Roots at PayPal Park in San Jose, California, on Tuesday, May 7, 2024. (Shae Hammond/ Bay Regional Newsgroup)

SAN JOSE – The noisy Oakland Roots fan section in the northeast corner of PayPal Park went silent for a moment in the 12th minute, their chants and drums falling silent.

That brief lull during the U.S. Open Cup football game between the visiting Roots and the host San Jose Earthquakes was quickly replaced by a refrain that baseball fans in Oakland have become well familiar with.

“Sell the team! Sell ​​the team! Sell ​​the team!” echoed through the half-full stadium Tuesday night, but the demand for Earthquakes and A’s owner John Fisher was quickly replaced by another three-word chant, including an expletive.

The Roots lost 1-0 on a late goal from the Quakes, but the loud Oakland fans made their point.

Ruben Ortiz wore a brightly colored “SELL” shirt with a neon green “SELL” flag wrapped around his neck like a cape as he joined in the chants to get Fisher to sell the A’s before they move to Sacramento next season.

Ortiz has been an A fan since 1996 and considered watching Josh Donaldson’s walk-off home run against the Tigers in 2014 as his favorite memory at the Coliseum.

That’s the kind of experience Ortiz believes Fisher denies to both A’s and Earthquakes fans.

Ortiz had never been to a professional football game before, but he was moved by the opportunity to protest Fisher while supporting his local team.

“What would be a better first game than to show that not only does Oakland deserve better, but San Jose deserves better ownership than John Fisher,” Ortiz asked rhetorically.

Some Oakland A’s fans have decided to boycott the team because they don’t want to give the infamous owner their money.

Jorge Leon is the founder of the Oakland 68s, a fan group that transported supporters from The Town to San Jose. He is – to say the least – not a fan of Fisher, but he still bought a ticket to cheer on a team that the ’68s are joining.

“We see this as support of our Oakland Roots,” Jorge Leon said in a text message to the Bay Area News Group on Monday.