June 13: John Angelos issued a statement this morning completely rejecting the idea of resettling the Orioles and rejecting many of the allegations made by his brother (Twitter link):
“…My mother was born and raised in Northeast Baltimore, attended the city’s public schools at Eastern High School, and worked with my father their whole lives to help the city, including by returning the club to local ownership and preventing its transfer. For them, for me, he will play The Orioles are forever in Oriole Park, and we’ve never thought of anything different.
Since I was appointed President and CEO in accordance with my parents’ stated wishes, and was voted as the team’s controller by 30 major league clubs, I’ve taken important steps to ensure the future of the beloved franchise survives in Charm City. Just two months ago we celebrated the Maryland General Assembly with the passing of a bill promising to put $1.2 billion into reinvesting and reimagining the Camden Yards Sports Complex, which includes Oriole Park, ensuring the team will continue to play here in downtown Baltimore for generations to come. Maryland is committed to keeping our team in such great shape, and I am equally committed to keeping the Orioles at the heart of our state. …
I want to assure our Orioles players and coaches, our dedicated front office senior leadership team and staff, loyal fans, trusted partners, elected, civic and nonprofit leaders, and our entire community, that the Orioles will never leave. “
June 12: The hands of the Baltimore Orioles’ winches fight, According to a report by Tim Prudente and Justin Fenton of The Baltimore Banner. The piece details a lawsuit in which Louis Angelos is suing his brother, John Angelos. Both men are the 92-year-old sons of Peter Angelos, who was the lead investor for a group that bought the franchise in 1993. The lawsuit from Lewis alleges that Peter intended his two sons and Georgia, Peter’s wife and mother of John and Lewis, to share control of the team, but that’s John He has since taken steps to take over the club against his father’s wishes.
According to the lawsuit, Peter collapsed in 2017 due to a failed aortic valve. It appears that in subsequent years, succession plans developed, with Peter establishing a trust with his wife and two sons as co-custodians to manage the family’s assets. Lou Angelos alleges that Jon has since tried to take over against his brother’s wish. “John intends to retain absolute control of the Orioles — to manage, sell or, if he chooses, move to Tennessee (where he has a home and his wife’s place of business) — without having to respond to anyone,” the complaint states.
Among Lou Angelos’ claims that Georgia’s priority is to sell the team, as an advisor is trying to make a sale in 2020. According to the lawsuit, John intervened and canceled the deal. Le Jun is also accused of firing or requiring others to fire key front office employees, including Brady Anderson. After his playing days, Anderson served in the front office in Baltimore, eventually working his way up to the position of Vice President of Baseball Operations. However, he left the organization in 2019.
By November 2020, other Major League Baseball owners had approved John Angelos to take over as “controlling person” for O, in light of Peter’s deteriorating health. As noted at the end of the article, the value of this franchise is estimated at 1.375 billion dollars, according to Forbes magazine. Prudente and Fenton also note that earlier this year, the Maryland legislature passed an initiative that pledged $1.2 billion for upgrades to Oriole Park as well as Ravens M&T Bank Stadium, hoping to prevent both franchises from leaving the state. The club’s lease at Camden Yards runs until 2023, and the team has the option to extend the lease for an additional five seasons in February.
Of course, none of Lou Angelos’ claims have been proven in court. The litigation will likely end in settlement or dismissal before being presented to a jury. However, it’s still worth noting that one of baseball’s 30 franchises appears to be mired in turmoil at the top level, and there are plenty of numbers to watch over the coming months.
The Orioles did not comment on this matter. The piece contains many details not covered here, and interested readers are encouraged to give it a thorough read to get the full story.
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