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Peter Angelos Chastened? Fans Rebel Anyway

It's amazing what nine straight losing seasons and a frightening drop in attendance can do to turn a nasty and arrogant baseball team owner into a guy who now admits that there are baseball fans in Washington and who even says nice things about the owners of the Washington Nationals.

Yes, Baltimore's Peter Angelos is sounding awfully conciliatory these days, and here, in an interview with a Baltimore magazine, the owner who famously denied the existence of fans in the Washington area and who viciously saddled the Nationals with the worst TV deal in all of sports is now virtually begging fans to come back to see his Orioles.

Angelos says:

I do think that a baseball team in the nation's capital is positive for MLB. [By] not having a team for all those years, something was sort of missing for MLB. Those who are great fans of baseball say that it's our national pastime. And there is a lot of truth in that. It's great tradition and having a team in Washington is a good thing.

Hard to believe, huh?

Angelos goes on to say that his TV channel, MASN, which next season will carry both the O's and Nats games, is the only path to financial health and on-field success: "That is going get us on a more even plane with Boston and New York, and that was the purpose. It was even more desperately needed when a team dropped right into the area you have been drawing a very substantial number of fans from for many years."

Angelos blames lower ticket prices in Baltimore and lack of fan support for the inability of the O's to put a winning team on the field. Asked why Oakland, Miami and Minnesota are able to produce winners with vastly smaller budgets, the owner replies, "The only answer I can give you is better luck, as well as more astute general manager performance." Luck. Yeah, right.

Meanwhile, Baltimore fans are in open rebellion. There's even a mass walkout planned for today, organized by a Baltimore radio station owner. Frustrated fans will wear black, sit in a block in the upper deck, and then walk out en masse about an hour into today's game.

Couldn't happen to a nicer guy.

By Marc Fisher |  September 21, 2006; 7:46 AM ET
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Comments

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Marc -- Who do you hate more, Peter Angelos or Daniel Snyder?

Posted by: KK | September 21, 2006 8:08 AM

Luck, yeah right. Everyone knows it's the Diebold voting machines.

And the neocons.

Posted by: athea | September 21, 2006 9:10 AM

"I do think that a baseball team in the nation's capital is positive for MLB. [By] not having a team for all those years, something was sort of missing for MLB. Those who are great fans of baseball say that it's our national pastime. And there is a lot of truth in that. It's great tradition and having a team in Washington is a good thing."

When I first read that quote from Cuban Pete, I thought aliens had taken over his body. Then I considered MASN and realized a more likely reason: everyone has his price.

Oh, and good luck with that Baltimore fan protest today. For a 4:05 p.m. makeup game that's meaningless from a home team perspective, there probably won't be 10,000 fans in the entire house -- and many of them may be Tiger fans up from our end of the Parkway.

Posted by: Vincent | September 21, 2006 9:32 AM

Angelos is a tool, no doubt.

But, did everyone complaining feel the same way about Jack Kent Cooke?

Posted by: J | September 21, 2006 9:34 AM

On the topic of your voting piece in the Post today, I agree with pretty much all you said, but based on what appears in your piece, where do you get off suggesting the election adminstrator is beholding to Diebold? Sounds to me like she's beholden to the law of Maryland, which tells her to administer elections via electronic voting. I have no connections to this woman, but before you get all high and mighty in the name of democracy, consider that in besmirching her motives, you are inherently suggesting that she, a bureaucrat (said with no negative connotation) subvert the constitutional system and ignore the laws she is duty-bound to administer. Perhaps a little bit of personal attacking spiced up your column, but it was a terrible cheap shot. If you've got evidence she's on the take with Diebold, put it out there, but otherwise, don't blame her for the fact that Maryland's legislature and chief executive fast-tracked untested voting technology for which others are left holding the bag.

Posted by: Bob in Bowie | September 21, 2006 9:42 AM

I am the textbook case....grew up here idolizing the Ripkens, Earl Weaver, Eddie Murray, Doug DeCinces , the 1979 Pennant team, the 1980 Milwaukee loss, the 1981 strike, 1983 World Series, etc.

I went to 10-20 games a year at Memorial Stadium and then Camden Yards.

Fast forward to the Angelos teams. Jon Miller, Davey Johnson, Albert Belle. The list of mistakes is vast. By the time he uttered the famous "there are no fans in Washington" line, Angelos had long since seen the last dollar from me.

Only the undoing of the horrid MASN deal would make this all seem whole. Otherwise he is reaping what he sowed.

Posted by: Former O's Fan | September 21, 2006 9:47 AM

The line of the article is Angelos saying when the Orioles have 46,000 people paying $22 per person versus the Red Sox having 46,000 paying $45 per person each home game. Put the crack pipe down Pete, unless it's the Yankees or Red Sox coming to Baltimore you ain't gonna see 46,000 paying fans at Oriole Park. If you want 46,000 fans to show up regularly put a product worth paying to see on the field.

Posted by: KP | September 21, 2006 10:00 AM

J, I think there were mixed feelings here about Jack Kent Cooke. He was often arrogant and bullying, but he also let his football staff (Gibbs and Beathard/Casserly) run the team, and I believe he really valued the team's fans.

You could always count on JKC to speak his mind too, so it was never a dull day when he spoke.

Posted by: Flunky | September 21, 2006 10:56 AM

Jack Kent Cooke was not always a good person, but he was a pretty good owner (3 Super Bowl wins) who carried himself with style. He was a magnicificent b--tard.

Angelo$ is not magnicificent.

Posted by: WFY | September 21, 2006 11:33 AM

My father-in-law was a satisfied client of Angelos the lawyer, but as a diehard Orioles fan he loathes Angelos the owner.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | September 21, 2006 11:35 AM

http://www.jackkentcooke.org/jkcf_web/content.aspx?page=MrCooke

I wonder what Peter Angelo$ will leave behind. The prick will probably find a way to take it with him.

Posted by: WB | September 21, 2006 11:59 AM

KP: While the ticket prices you quote are about right as averages, Fenway Park is smaller (38,000 vs. 48,000). That's partly why the Red Sox can charge higher prices, supply and demand. If the Orioles returned to the sellouts of the '90s, they still wouldn't make as much as the Sox, but because Fenway is smaller the discrepancy isn't quite as big.

Posted by: Cosmo | September 21, 2006 4:46 PM

A humbled and chastened Angelos finally realizes something that he stubbornly ignored in the past. It wasn't a matter of whether WASHINGTON could support a major league team, it has always been whether BALTIMORE could carry a team on its own. Without corporate ticket dollars coming up the B-W parkway from the city where Peter the Grate had declared "there are no real basball fans in Washington, that's a fiction." Angelos never realized that he didn't have divine right to open the gates of OPCY, say "y'all come," and be annually guaranteed 3 million customers. As someone living in Prince George's County, I must say I am less than impressed with the quality of Nats' games on MASN (euphemistically known as Mr. Angelos Sports Network, or with all the time it took to surface on Comcast it could be known as the Missing in Action Sports Network). If you like the narrow spectrum of Balamer sports MASN is your channel. But for a more well-rounded look at regional sports, I'll stick with Comcast Sportsnight. BTW - when will one of our sharp DC-type lawyers initiate an anti-trust suit so the Nats can have control of their own TV rights? Right now, Peter the Grate's team is seen more on over-the-air television than our home team. That ain't right.

Posted by: leetee1955 | September 21, 2006 4:48 PM

Sure, right. I dont' recall prices being lowered when we were winning. ("we" being the fan nomenclature to mean those that play and those that cheer=the team)

Cook was indeed a magnificant SOB, and he won.

Angelos and Snyder care about one thing: $$$

(well, ok, The Daniel is also a fantasy football owner of a real NFL team, so he probably does think he wants to win as well.)

Has beens and never will bes stars don't make a team good. Playing more than one season together under the same system does.

In short: stop buying players; stop changing coaches more often than your oil.

Posted by: Fitz | September 21, 2006 5:43 PM

How exactly is it going to work to have both teams on MASN? Aren't most of their games on at the same time?

Posted by: Nats Fan | September 21, 2006 6:14 PM

If you think this represents some mellowing of Angelos you're delusional. He's a trial lawyer spinning his position. The fact that people think he is "chastened" is proof of just how good he is. Everyone with cable whether they know or care there is a baseball team in the area are now putting two+ dollars a month in his pocket, and he'll raise ticket prices. Meanwhile people think, "we showed that rich guy!"

So tell me again who has the right to wear a smug smile?

Posted by: CW | September 21, 2006 6:33 PM

JKC knew at least one thing, he let his football people run the personnel department.

Both Snyder and Angelos constantly meddle. Snyder is obsessed with star power and rep. Angelos is constantly overriding the decisions of his general manager or delaying them so free agents give up and sign elsewhere.

We can also go into the pathetic draft history of both franchises recently.

Posted by: tallbear | September 22, 2006 9:03 AM

So, was there a walkout? How about blogging about it, Marky-Marc?

Posted by: The Cosmic Avenger | September 22, 2006 10:43 AM

As long as Peter Angelos has his hands in the Baltimore Orioles organization, I will never, never, ever set foot in Camden Yard again. We used to go to a dozen or so games a year (from NoVA). After his wholesale firesale back in '97 (or was it '98) on the eve of the trade deadline, we cut our games back to 2-3 times per year. Couple that w/ the increasing traffic, losing seasons and mismanagment (gee, who's responsible for the hiring of those peeps...the groundskeepers or Angelos?!?), I put my O's cap in the closet and have started rooting for the Nats.

Not only is RFK closer, the experience at a Nats game provides a better product, no matter what Marc thinks of Dippin' Dots.

Posted by: Sam F. | September 22, 2006 11:38 AM

Ha Ha...reality is Baseball is a broken system which creates massive imbalance in the teams. Until Baseball implements revenue sharing (and I dont mean the WAshington team sending its TV revenue to Baltimore) and a salary cap the sport will continue to lose fans in small markets around the country.

Look to San Diego where in the chase for a playoff spot they can't fill the stadium cause they have lost too many fans from too many years of losing and dont have the revenue to got get an extra player or two to keep them in the run.

Posted by: Tim Springfield | September 22, 2006 12:47 PM

With the exception of playoffs, baseball is quite boring.

Posted by: dc | September 22, 2006 1:28 PM

dc...If you think baseball is boring, you simply don't understand it.

As to JKC...Never grumpy or mean spirited. Always did it (whatever it was) with style. Besides, with girlfriends and wives giving birth and riding around on the hoods of Jaguars...certainly a lot more fun than Peter the Nasty.

Posted by: Catcher50 | September 25, 2006 3:47 PM

I think what was meant by the question about JKC, and as a Skins fan I loved how he gave the coaches a somewhat free hand, was "Were the people complaining about Angelos' attitude towards DC baseball and bitterness at him for trying to keep a team out of DC also complaining about JKC's efforts to keep a football team out of Maryland." It's a good question, and I suspect the answer is no.

It is truly bizarre how much the anger of Nats fans resembles the anger of Ravens fans. It seems like it might be more productive to simply say "even," and be done with it. There is, though, that issue with MASN. I think getting rid of the deal is shortsighted and driven by anger. What is really needed is getting Nats' ownership in MASN closer to half. Even with just the eventual 3rd or whatever, MASN is going to be the way that both the Os and Nats compete with the big boys. If it wasn't for Angelos, the Nationals wouldn't have any ownership in an RSN, the would simply get paid for broadcast rights, something they got from Angelos anyway.

Posted by: jkc | September 28, 2006 2:39 PM

Angelos is a bottom dwelling scum bag whose ill gotten "fake" lawsuits about breast implants allowed him to buy and drag down a once great team. Keep the boycotts coming.

Posted by: jdog | September 29, 2006 2:10 PM

i knew people who used to do coke with Petes son. Would it be a shame if Pete would overdose with him.

Posted by: someone | October 3, 2006 2:59 PM

Government is broken. Start over. This is why I'm working on South Dakota's http://www.AmendmentE.com - removing judicial immunity.

Few reporters are mentioning former judges who also believe it's a good idea. Instead they're quoting former Supreme Court Justice Sandra O'Connor who mistakenly links the South Dakota effort to a California based "disgruntled litigant" and reporters aren't fact checking.
http://www.amendmente.com/faq.asp

Recruited to South Dakota after launching www.FamilyLawCourts.com, a site detailing media bias, media inaccuracies and largely, a media which demonstrates it couldn't possibly care any less about kids than the officials and others who target them.

The site also features a list of men and women killing kids, listed alphabetically, by state; as a result of family breakups.
www.FamilyLawCourt.com/kids.html

I launched the site because traditional media continually fails to report children are nothing more than makreting oppotunities in family court, while attorneys and therapists use them as a money train.
www.FamilyLawCourts.com/domestic.html

After all, in the Supreme Court decision involving three little girls murdered by their father the Court ruled police don't have to enforce restraining orders....making domestic violence profitable for non-profits claiming to end violence.

Not reported? The earlier AP report that clearly stated these non-profits addressing "domestic violence" politicans are so fond of, (usually through "Family Justice Centers" are Highly ineffective.

Then there's the bad cops...including police chiefs having sex with underage girls.
www.FamilyLawCourts.com/badcop.html

Kids are But Marketing Opportunities.

Normally I work with attorneys. See below. (I'm the only entry under "R" entry)
http://www.ocregister.com/ocregister/news/columns/article_939203.php
or
http://www.ocregister.com/ocregister/news/columns/article_682538.php
and
http://www.ocregister.com/ocregister/news/columns/article_1244624.php

However, when I discovered certain judges to be basing custody decisions on reports from individuals fined by the State of California for practicing therapy without a license, I wrote my representative who happened to live in my little town. That would be Congressman Randy Cunningham...who did not respond to repeated requests for assistance.

Perhaps he was too busy counting his bribe money. Interestingly, when I attended Cunningham's sentencing, I was surprised at the number of judges also in attendance.

Either way, legal services are prostituted out under the guise of protecting children.

As such, the current hue and cry about Foley is but a yawn for me.
.
The good news? The public now has a way to educate themselves about bad judges. See http://www.USAjudges.com

God know the Commission on Judicial Performance isn't doing squat. Their last report being a really bad joke.

2005 - REPEATING ANOTHER STUNNING EXAMPLE:

In 2005, the California CJP received on 965 complaints on 1,696
jurists, and determined 500 were Outside CJP jurisdiction, (workers
comp, federal court or judges pro tem).

Most of the 1,696 complaints were flatly rejected. The bulk of CJP's
budget is spent in rent and administrative fees rejecting complaints.

41 investigations were opened after 55 inquiries, began.

The result:
1 judge was removed.
1 judge was censured.
1 judge was censured and barred
4 judges were admonished.
6 judges received private admonishments
12 judges received "advisory" letters

1,696 complaints:
7 public actions
18 private "Don't do that anymore"

So out of 1,696 complaints, 25 "conclusions" were reached.

USAjudges.com concluded enough is enough.
Unlike CJP, a report made at USAjudges.com includes the case type,
country and the name of the judge complained. CJP reports only
release case type percentages.
http://cjp.ca.gov/2001%20statistics.htm

The result being the public is prohibited from learning whether a
particular county has a particular or continuing, entrenched problem
with one or more jurists in a particular area of law.
http://cjp.ca.gov/2001privdisc.htm

Good government is Everyone's job.

Those wanting good government know participation is the best choice
they can make. God knows our leaders seem to be practicing one cover-up after another.

Posted by: Bonnie Russell | October 4, 2006 9:42 PM

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