Arte Moreno, who has owned the Los Angeles Angels for nearly two decades but said last year he was exploring a possible sale of the franchise, announced this week he will maintain ownership of the team.
“During this process, it became clear that we have unfinished business and feel we can make a positive impact on the future of the team and the fan experience,” Moreno said in a statement released by the team. “This offseason we committed to a franchise record player payroll and still want to accomplish our goal of bringing a World Series championship back to our fans. We are excited about this next chapter of Angels baseball.”
Moreno thanked Galatioto Sports Partners, the firm he hired last August to help explore a possible sale of the team, and said the process “allowed us to meet with a number of highly qualified individuals and groups who expressed strong interest in the club.”
“However, as discussions advanced and began to crystallize, we realized our hearts remain with the Angels, and we are not ready to part ways with the fans, players and our employees.”
Moreno bought the team for about $180 million from the Walt Disney Co. in 2003.
He purchased the team following the Angels’ World Series title in 2002, but the team has struggled over the past decade, failing to make the playoffs since 2014 and recently suffering its seventh straight losing season.
The team has also had off-the-field struggles, most notably the 2019 overdose death of pitcher Tyler Skaggs in a Texas hotel room, and the conviction last year of the team’s former communications director for providing him with the narcotics.
Moreno has also been mired in failed discussions with the city of Anaheim over the proposed purchase of Angel Stadium. The city officially pulled the plug on the proposed sale last May, acting amid an FBI investigation into allegations that former Mayor Harry Sidhu fed insider information to the team in hopes of landing a substantial campaign donation. Sidhu would soon resign as mayor.
The Angels have a lease to play at Angel Stadium through 2029 with the option for three three-year extensions through 2038.