Anaheim Angels owner explores selling franchise

Fans enter Angels Stadium before a baseball game between the Los Angeles Angels and the Houston...
Fans enter Angels Stadium before a baseball game between the Los Angeles Angels and the Houston Astros Thursday, April 7, 2022, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis )(Ashley Landis | AP)
Published: Aug. 23, 2022 at 11:21 AM PDT
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ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Los Angeles Angels owner Arte Moreno says he is exploring the possibility of selling the franchise.

Moreno purchased the Angels in 2003, a year after they won the World Series. He has spent aggressively on aging free agent stars like Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton, but the club hasn’t been back to the Fall Classic since he became owner.

Los Angeles is set to miss the postseason for the eighth straight year despite featuring AL MVPs Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani.

“It has been a great honor and privilege to own the Angels for 20 seasons,” Moreno said in a statement. “Although this difficult decision was entirely our choice and deserved a great deal of thoughtful consideration, my family and I have ultimately come to the conclusion that now is the time.”

Moreno’s announcement comes at a critical moment for the franchise, with Ohtani set to be a free agent after the 2024 season. Ohtani, a two-way sensation who left Japan and joined the Angels in 2018, has made it clear he wants to play for a contending team. If the franchise can’t sign Ohtani to a long-term deal, it may decide to trade him before he has a chance to leave as a free agent.

Trout, a three-time MVP, is signed through the 2030 season on a $426.5 million, 12-year deal. He’s appeared in just three postseason games with the Angels, all in 2014, despite having been the best player in baseball for most of the last decade.

The team has retained Galatioto Sports Partners as financial advisor for the process and said it will not have any additional comment.

Moreno, a Mexican-American born in Arizona, is the only non-white controlling owner in Major League Baseball. The Angels are the second MLB team currently for sale, joining the Washington Nationals.