Leonard "Boogie" Weinglass, a former Baltimorean, businessman and a model for a character in the movie "Diner," is exploring the possibility of buying the Orioles.
NB Weinglass revealed his interest last night sports talk show on
WCAO-AM radio hosted by Stan "The Fan" Charles.
"I think he would make a tremendous owner," Charles said this morning, though "it's at the very, very early stages."
New York investor Eli S. Jacobs, who owns the controlling share of the Orioles, is considering selling the baseball team he bought in 1989. He has hired an investment banker to appraise some offers he has received, Jacobs said.
Weinglass, 49, the founder and vice chairman of Merry-Go-Round Enterprises Inc. of Towson, now lives in Aspen, Colo., and was unavailable this morning. However, he told The Sun that he has contacted Jacob's investment banker, J.P. Morgan Inc. of New York, and is waiting to get some financial reports on the team.
When he sees those documents, he will decide what he thinks the team is worth and whether to make an offer, he said. Some estimates have put the value of the team as high as $120 million.
In a statement that will no doubt be received with glee by fans, Weinglass said "I know up front, we'd have to spend some money for new players."
The Orioles have one of the lowest player payrolls in baseball, something that is blamed by some fans for the team's poor performance. The team is tied for last place in the American League's East division.
Weinglass said he would want to be the majority owner of the team, but would consider investments by other executives at Merry-Go-Round.
Weinglass grew up in Baltimore, and still owns a home here and in Ocean City.