Angelos goes to New York for MLB talks

February 09, 2005|By Ed Waldman | Ed Waldman,SUN STAFF

Amid indications that an agreement may be at hand, Orioles owner Peter Angelos traveled to New York yesterday for another meeting with Major League Baseball president Bob DuPuy.

Angelos has been negotiating with baseball since September over how the Orioles will be financially protected from the effects of sharing the Baltimore-Washington market for the first time in 34 years after MLB relocated the Montreal Expos to the nation's capital.

Angelos, reached on the train on his way back to Baltimore, declined to comment on yesterday's talks.

DuPuy did not return a phone call seeking comment yesterday. But, in an e-mail sent to The Sun over the weekend, he said, "I do see some light at the end of the tunnel and hope really to finalize things this week if at all possible."

The pace of the talks has picked up in the past month, with baseball seeking to get a deal in place as it begins the process of selling the Washington Nationals. How much revenue the Nationals will get from their local TV deal is a critically important figure for potential ownership groups when they determine how much to bid for the team, which was bought by MLB for $120 million three years ago.

A key component of the negotiations has been the creation of a regional sports network that would televise both teams' games. Deciding how to split the revenue from the broadcasts, how the ownership stake in the network would be divided and where each team's games could be shown has proved to be more difficult than anyone envisioned.

Baseball commissioner Bud Selig met with Angelos at the owners meetings in Scottsdale, Ariz., on Jan. 13. And last week Angelos flew to Milwaukee on his private jet to meet with Selig.

Orioles chief operating officer Joe Foss and general counsel H. Russell Smouse attended the meetings in Arizona and Milwaukee, but sources said that Angelos traveled to New York yesterday by himself. Selig did not attend yesterday's talks.

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