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Angels Want to be Sold Before Opening Day, Rob Manfred Says

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVDecember 7, 2022

Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred speaks during a press conference at MLB Headquarters on Friday, Sep. 9, 2022. (AP Photo/Jeenah Moon)
AP Photo/Jeenah Moon

The Los Angeles Angels are hoping to have new ownership in place by the start of the 2023 season.

"The point at which people actually see financial information is an important step forward in the process," MLB commissioner Rob Manfred told reporters on Tuesday at the winter meetings. "My understanding is that the club would like to have the sale resolved before Opening Day. Whether that happens I think depends in part on the bidding process and how quickly you can get documents done."

In August, longtime owner Arte Moreno and the franchise announced that he was investigating a possible sale of the team:

Los Angeles Angels @Angels

Today, Angels Baseball announced that the Organization has initiated a formal process to evaluate strategic alternatives including a possible sale of the team. <a href="https://t.co/ZdQb34V4Ns">pic.twitter.com/ZdQb34V4Ns</a>

Moreno, 76, has owned the Angels since 2003. Under his watch, the team has reached the postseason six times and won just two playoff series. They have now gone eight straight seasons without a postseason berth despite having one of the game's biggest stars, Mike Trout, and more recently, 2021 AL MVP Shohei Ohtani.

His ownership has been marked by several controversies and some ill-advised, high-profile signings that failed to pan out. It has also been marked by seven straight losing seasons after a promising start to his ownership, which included five AL West divisional titles in seven years.

Moreno, to his credit, wasn't shy about spending money. The players he's given the green light to spend that money on have largely been the issue.

"The infrastructure needs to be improved. There's a lot of things that need to be improved there," former manager Joe Maddon told Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times in August regarding the Angels' organization. "[Trout and Ohtani] can't do it alone, obviously. It's the non-sexy stuff that has to get better. It's not just bright, shiny objects—they have that."

"They need to do the infrastructure better in order to get to where we had been in the past," he continued. "That was my goal, to get the Angels back to where we had been in the past. That was it. Nothing but pure intentions. I was an Angel. They had every ounce of me. And now that's done."

Perhaps by Opening Day, the Moreno era will be done as well.