As the continuing drama unfolds over the Angelos’ family infighting for control of the Orioles team’s future, another potential change for the team has arisen – a new ownership group with Cal Ripken Jr. involved may be in the works.
Major League Baseball has been reportedly in contact with Ripken over this possibility. The Iron Man becoming a part-owner of this franchise creates an intriguing scenario going down the road.
Could Cal Ripken Jr. be a part of a new ownership team for the Orioles?
Even the notion that Ripken could become a part-owner of the Baltimore Orioles should be a beacon of hope for this storied franchise as the team’s very existence is being decided in court. Cal Ripken Jr. serves as a special advisor to MLB on youth programs and leads a youth baseball initiative out of his offices in Baltimore and Annapolis.
Ripken continues to maintain a local physical presence in Charm City. MLB has reportedly contacted him and “encouraged (him) to be a part of a group” willing to buy the Orioles if/when they become available to purchase.
Cal Ripken Jr. brings an impressive resume to any ownership group. Not only is he the closest thing to Orioles royalty with his family connection to the team, including his entire baseball career, but Ripken has also owned minor league teams and manages a youth baseball program – seeming prerequisites to being a part of an MLB team ownership group.
Forbes currently values the Baltimore Orioles at $1.37 billion. Other potential owners/investors such as former Orioles president and CEO Larry Lucchino and Baltimore native David Rubenstein have been mentioned as other possible team investors.
Rubenstein is the CEO of the Carlyle Group, which is a global investment firm and no doubt has access to the capital needed to be at least a part-owner of a Major League franchise. The heart of this issue is the prolonged drama that could unfold if the Angelos family continues their legal struggles for the rest of this year and well into the following year.
It is no secret that Peter Angelos’ health has deteriorated, and he has turned over control of his fortunes, including the Orioles, to his wife Georgia and son John.
However, the Angelos family has to look at potential tax consequences if they sell the O’s before Peter Angelos passes – meaning possible hefty capital gains taxes. The continual ownership strife may well signal that it’s time for the Orioles to find new owners who are committed to keeping the O’s in Baltimore for decades to come.