The Baltimore Orioles are having an excellent season on the field, and could win the World Series this Fall. But, fans have to worry about whether the team will stay in Baltimore long-term.
The Angelos family, who has owned the team since 1993, are considered by many fans to not be the ideal owners for the longest-running pro franchise in Baltimore. And, the fact that their lease at Baltimore’s Camden Yards expires when the calendar turns to 2024 is putting the city’s residents on edge.
Let’s face it, they have reason to be nervous. After all, the Baltimore Colts famously moved to Indianapolis in the middle of the night in 1984, leaving the city without an NFL team until the Cleveland Browns relocated to the city in 1996. It’s always painful to lose a team. To lose this Baltimore Orioles team, with the best young core in baseball and the league’s top farm system coming behind it, would be even more painful than normal.
And, it seems like the Angelos family are doing anything they can to avoid signing the lease, potentially setting them up to leave the city. Here is the Baltimore Banner with more details.
Before Orioles chairman and CEO John Angelos signs a new lease at Oriole Park at Camden Yards, he wants more, according to multiple sources with direct knowledge of the discussions.
What does he want? The use of public land for renovations and new development around the stadium — potentially on existing parking lots — that he would benefit from, according to the sources. That request has held up negotiations, with a Dec. 31 deadline looming.
Angelos isn’t going to get his wish for development on the parking lots, nor will he receive an extra $300 million that he’s asking for from the state, according to another source who also has knowledge of the lease negotiations but requested anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the issue publicly.
Those seem like some absurd demands. Ultimately, I find it hard to believe that the Orioles will be playing anywhere else but Camden Yards next season and beyond. But, if I were an Orioles fan, I would still be uneasy about the lease being unsigned.