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Orioles continue to oppose a team in D.C....
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techfan4 Offline
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Thought I'd post this for you guys in MD...

Orioles continue to oppose a team in D.C.

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ESPN.com news services


Amid speculation Washington, D.C. is closer to landing a franchise than ever, Baltimore Orioles CEO Joe Foss told The Washington Post that he believes Major League Baseball will not put a team in the Washington area because of the financial damage it would cause the Orioles.

"I know that there is great interest in D.C., but there are enormous challenges to a team going into D.C., and I don't believe Major League Baseball will in the final analysis see fit to put another team in Washington," Foss said. "I don't think it will happen."

Foss told the Post the long-time position of Orioles ownership is unchanged concerning a team in or near Washington.

"We believe that the Washington-Baltimore marketplace can successfully support only one major league franchise," he said. "We do not believe two teams can be successful in this market."

Orioles owner Peter Angelos has remained silent about the issue since commissioner Bud Selig said in January that the Washington area is the "prime candidate" for relocation, and that relocation will happen "in the near future."

Industry sources told the Post that Angelos was caught off guard by those remarks. In opposing a Washington team, the Orioles have cited a study showing as much as 25 percent of their fan base is from the Washington area, considerably higher than a similar study commissioned by Northern Virginians seeking a team, the Post reported.

Fred Malek, who heads the group seeking to bring baseball back to the District, insisted Washington and Baltimore could support separate teams.

"Our studies, as well as Northern Virginia's studies, have shown that a team in D.C. would take away very few fans" from the Orioles, Malek said through a spokesman, "and we think they could easily be replaced by Baltimore area residents who would be able to get tickets at the gate. Having teams in D.C. and Baltimore, we think, could stimulate a competitive spirit and increase interest in the whole area."

Baseball continues to pursue contraction, but there have been rumors that the Montreal Expos, bought by MLB last month, could be sold and moved to Washington after this season.

The Florida Marlins, now owned by former Expos owner Jeffrey Loria, are another team that might be moved in the near future, according to Post sources.

Baseball's owners can approve the relocation of a team to Washington by a three-fourths vote, but the Orioles own the radio and cable television rights for an area that extends as far south as North Carolina and includes Washington and Northern Virginia, the Post reported.

Ever since the Senators bolted the Beltway in 1971 to become the Texas Rangers, baseball fans in Washington, D.C., have clamored for another major-league franchise.
03-18-2002 04:36 PM
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nate jonesacc Offline
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Go Orioles! I was the biggest fan of the O's a few years ago during the Ripken Jr, Brady Andersen, Bobby Bonilla (short lived), Robby Alomar Jr, years. Now, they are way too young and inexperienced.
03-19-2002 11:05 PM
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