Practice what you preach, John Angelos, and sign the lease.

John Angelos celebrated with the team for clinching the postseason and stated that the team will “be around for the next 30 years.” Angry Baltimore Orioles fans say: THEN PRACTICE WHAT YOU PREACH AND SIGN THE LEASE

Yesterday, the Baltimore Orioles secured a postseason bid after Cleveland dispatched the Rangers, 9-2, which seemingly fired up the Orioles to do a double-take and do a double comeback win over the Rays on Sunday Afternoon at Camden Yards. The Orioles went ahead and celebrated their long-awaited postseason bid. After celebrating with the fans, the Orioles players retired to the clubhouse where they sprayed each other with beer, champagne, and other beverages to celebrate their accomplishment.

Welcoming himself to the party was none other than John Angelos, the owner of the club, who took a hit of the “dong bong” and proclaimed that the team would be here for the next thirty years. Just a minute, John, who invited you? What did you do for the team that allows you, John Angelos, take a hit of the dong bong? Is it because you are owner of the team and sign the paychecks? My thought would’ve been to get him drunk enough to go to Wes Moore and say: “Hey Wessssy, mannnnnnnnn! I’m ready to sign that paper… document… or whatever you call it… Let’s keep them here!”

Yeah, uh huh, John, ok, you keep telling us that you’re going to keep the team here, yet you haven’t signed a gracious long-term lease that allows you to draw $600,000,000 in state bonds for repairs on Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Fans are very bitter at Angelos failing to sign a lease during the season, suspending Kevin Brown without cause, and just continue to not do the right thing for the cit. Time and time again, he is saying that he wants $300,000,000 more to make the stadium look like The Battery at Truist Field. Governor Wes Moore has said over and over that he will not get the $300,000,000, but somehow, I believe he is starting to bend the knee to him as the Governor is contemplating possibly having the sales tax increased by 1% (moving it up to 7%) and adding a progressive amusement tax on sports, concert, and amusement park tickets. I don’t think Angelos understands that $600 million is MORE than enough and that fans believe signing the lease will give the Orioles an extra oomph to do good things come playoff time.

Yes, that’s right, Governor Moore, of course, make the taxpayers foot the remaining $300,000,000 so that the team stays in town and makes your buddy and mega-donor John Angelos very happy. A recent opinion that was written said that eventually it’s going to happen: The taxpayers are going to foot the remaining balance that Angelos wants to revitalize the stadium and surrounding area.

This is what drives me crazy as a fan. Owners think that they put the fans first but it’s all about greed and how much they can siphon off of taxpayer. Milwaukee is asking taxpayers to foot at least $350M for repairs to American Family Ballpark. Chicago South Side and Mayor Brandon Johnson is asking the Chicago City Government along with the Illinois State Government for at least $412M in repairs to Guaranteed Rate Field. Milwaukee has bigger problems right now but it would help to keep the team in Wisconsin. Chicago? Don’t even get me started with them.

Oriole Park at Camden Yards needs some upgrades and I’ve listed them in other opinion pieces.

The taxpayers should not be responsible for payment of this at all, period. If the owner wants to do it, he should take what the state offers and then if he’s in need of extra money, then take out a bank loan, and do it himself. But if you don’t have sufficient funds to pay for the loan (loans have to be paid back, you know. Wink, Wink, Nudge, Nudge!), you shouldn’t own the team. Sell it to investors who will use the proper funds and obtain bank loans to pay for any sort of upgrades or repairs to their respective stadiums and not relying on the constant need for taxpayer funding. Plus, if you can’t pay for players? Then you shouldn’t own the team. This is leading to speculation that Angelos doesn’t have enough money or revenues (he recently stated that he would have to raise prices heavily) to pay for impending mega contracts of Henderson, Rutschman, Rodriguez, Kjerstad, and eventually, Jackson Holliday.

Let’s take a look at some examples of siphoning fans:

Mark Davis is actually a perfect example of this, his net worth is only $500 million dollars, and he has barely any liquid cash. He absconded taxpayers for nearly $1 billion in tax money and bonds for the stadium with the Raiders footing the other billion. Davis got a $200 million no-interest loan from the NFL, 99-year construction bonds worth $750M which were funded by increases in the room tax. and $300 million was funded by personal seat licenses (which are some of the highest in the National Football League).

How about Shahid Khan? He has one of the highest net worths in the NFL, yet he also has very little in terms of liquid cash available. Jacksonville’s stadium will receive nearly $1 billion in upgrades to be paid for by, guess who: THE TAXPAYER.

The Pegula family and the new Bills Stadium, who foots the bill? The taxpayer at a whopping $850 million ($600 million from New York State, $250 million from Erie County). There’s also some very strong criticism about if the stadium will make money or not.

Amongst all those examples, Moore has not made the move to call a special session just yet for tax increases, but I am sure it is coming in due time because he will bend the knee to his buddy and give him the money he wants. It’s not going to be very popular with taxpayers because they’re already bent over a barrel with inflation, continuing high grocery, electric, and gas prices with no end in sight, and dealing with increasing credit card debt.

Angelos has again constantly assured fans that the Orioles are not leaving town but with the way it’s looking, if he doesn’t sign anything soon, we might be asking: Who’s to blame and trust me, it will fall on Angelos and Governor Wes Moore.

A simple plea from us fans:

John Angelos,

You proclaimed the team will be around for the next 30 years, so John, do the fans a favor, and for the good of the city of Baltimore: Just take what the state gives you (the $600 million in bonds), stop trying to ask for more, and sign the long-term lease, that’s all the fans are asking. You’ll be doing us all a good service knowing that the team we love will be here for years to come.

The fans.

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Joshua Leuschner

Orioles/Ravens/Capitals/Terrapins/Inter Miami CF fan. Runs a podcast who tells it like it is (I-95 East Coast Sports Podcast) and loves sports, sports betting (responsibly of course), and finding arcane statistics in professional sports. He is also a devoted classic cartoon enthusiast (1930s rubberhose and 1940s-1960s silver/golden age animation), video game player, Enya enthusiast, devotee of classical music (Mozart, Sibelius, Beethoven, Rachmaninoff, Shostakovich, Prokofiev, and others), Hair/Classic/80s Rock fan, beer connoisseur, gym goer, former Slow Pitch Softball Player, and traveler.

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