It was one of the biggest business stories in baseball this offseason, and, by extension, just one of the biggest baseball stories: the Los Angeles Angels were going to be sold. Ownership transitions are always a big deal, but against the backdrop of near-term expansion, a new CBA, and Shohei Ohtani’s impending free agency, a transition was all the more intriguing.
… and it’s not going to happen:
“Our hearts remained with the Angels … but for more money, our hearts would’ve gone wherever the heck they told us.”
Despite a great deal of reported interest in the team, it’s clear that Arte Moreno simply didn’t find an offer out there that was sizable enough. That’s gonna be a major OOF for Angels fans who feel like he has been too involved in the last decade, and it throws wide open the question of what happens with Shohei Ohtani. When the team was being sold, it was widely assumed that an interested buyer would come in *KNOWING* that they had to allocate a huge chunk of change to try to extend Ohtani before he hits free agency. But if the team isn’t being sold, is the Moreno Family really going to lock the organization into a $500 million contract not knowing how a future buyer would feel about it? Maybe that would be part of the appeal of the franchise in the first place, yes. But maybe not. You can’t know as we sit here today.
So I would say this news makes it slightly more possible that Ohtani actually hits free agency after this season – and maybe even makes it slightly more possible that he’s traded before then …
Couple this Los Angeles Angels news with the Washington Nationals sale ALSO falling apart and I’m thinking there might be another layer to this story, and it’s purely financial: a significant recession is anticipated, regional sports networks are in total disarray, interest rates are through the roof, and the current owners may have had stars in their eyes thanks to the pricey sale of the Mets to Steve Cohen.