The late commissionerA. Bartletta GiamattiegoHe famously said baseball was "made to break your heart." The game begins in spring, blooms in summer, and fills the afternoons and evenings. As soon as it cools raining, it ends and leaves you alone in autumn.
Whenever I hear this quote, I think of the angels and Anaheim. For 57 years, the team treated the host city like a spittoon.
This week,Former Anaheim Mayor Harry Sidhu agreed to plead guiltyFederal allegations surrounding the failed sale of Angel Stadium to a company owned by... Angels owner Arte Moreno. The comparison revealed details that further shed light on the dubious connections between the team and city officials.
After all we Anaheimers had to endure, the halo finally went too far. And we've come to terms with thatVery.
WhenGene AutryHe relocated the team from Los Angeles in 1966 and dubbed them the California Angels, thinking Anaheim was a suburb with little national fame. Disney added the city's name while helming the franchise from 1996 to 2003 and clothed playersperiwinkle blue uniformswhich were among the ugliest in the history of professional sports.
City officials hoped for more respect when Moreno bought the Angels 20 years ago. Instead, the Tucson billionaire does more than thathe renamed them the Los Angeles Angelsbut it later cost taxpayers millions in legal feesAnaheim sued unsuccessfullyto stop renaming.
Former Anaheim Mayor pleads guilty to corruption charges related to Angel Stadium sale
Harry Sidhu admitted lying to FBI agents and hampering operations by secretly helping the Angels negotiate with the city over land beneath the stadium.
16. August 2023
Moreno managed a team that didn't make the World Series under him, instead continuing the terrible tradition of padding out the rosterOver the Hill Players,paid free agents,disappointing prospects– and often all three at the same time. The Angels are indeed the best baseball playersMike'a TroutaIShohei Ohtani. But in six years they have failed to record a winning season, let alone a playoff appearance, with these two superstars.
Angels have broken the hearts of the people in my beloved hometown so many times that most have long since stopped caring. For the average Anaheimer, the team means as much as Mars, which is why the city features as much Dodger Blue as it does Halo Red. No wonder the opposing team's cheers drown out the cheers of the home fans in almost every game I attend.
However, some of the people who have run Anaheim for the last decade have done everything in their power to make Moreno happy.
W 2013,The city council approved the planThis would allow Moreno to lease 130 acres of parking lot around Angel Stadium for just $100 a year as he invests $150 million in renovating the major leagues' fourth-oldest facility.
Public riotultimately defeated the proposalbut not Moreno's lust for a cherished deal. He publicly considered switching to Highway 5the great metropolis of Tustinand teamThey listened to Long Beach officialswho wanted to build a soccer field for them by the water. In 2020, the Anaheim City Council finally approved the sale of the stadium and parking lotfor $150 million in cashand $170 million in loans to build 500 affordable housing units and a 7-acre park.
Secret Hideaways and Powerful 'Kabala': Corruption Investigation Reveals Who Really Rules Anaheim
FBI investigative files show that business interests drive the Orange County town where Disneyland and the Angels is located.
19. May 2022 r
Last May, California Atty. General Rob Bonta asked the judge to do itStop the transaction with the stadiumsubsequentlyFBI investigation into the so-called "Cabala" who tried to rule Anaheim. Since then, this gesture has been controversialThe city council stopped the saleon the day of Sidhu's resignation.
WsettlementFiled in federal court on Wednesday, Sidhu pleaded guilty to lying to FBI agents about not expecting to receive anything from the Angels and was later filmed on secret tapes saying he hoped to get one to secure a $1 million campaign donation if the stadium deal is finalized. He also admitted to destroying an email in which he gave the team's adviser confidential information about the city's negotiations.
Let's see what Moreno has to say about this amazing revelation compared - that in 2020 theCounselor Angels planned to hold a mock city council meetingwith Sidhu and others to develop convincing arguments for a stadium contract.
It is not clear if the test even took place. However, as part of the review, an Angels aide said in an email that team officials "are available to help develop zingers, replies and other performance-enhancing items."
Angels spokeswoman Marie Garvey did not deny that the team was aware of the plan for a mock council meeting to be attended by the team president, a team lawyer, two other council members and more, in addition to Sidhu and an advisorthen CEO of the Anaheim Chamber of Commerce.
Garvey wrote to me, "It's important to note that neither the settlement nor the city's investigation found any evidence of wrongdoing by the Angels organization."
I would have had more faith in the clean squad if he hadn't refused to cooperatea city-funded independent investigation into corruption in Anaheim. I would have had more confidence if Moreno had said something to condemn the corruption that was taking place in the name of his happiness.
During the 20 years that Moreno owned the Angels, Anaheim grew poorer as its leaders did everything in their power to make life easier for the companies. For example, the city government eased zoning restrictions on the industrial areas around Angel Stadium—which housed warehouses and factories that employed well-paid residents—to include a district called “platinum triangle.
They hope to turn it into an LA hipster neighborhood. live. never materialized: companies come and go, trying to lure people in during the off-season. New construction of housing in the region is mainly luxury housing and apartments.No units were identified as inexpensive.
A body of research has shown that sports teams rarely contribute to the city treasury, and the Angels are no different.Research conducted in 2019 by Voice of OCrevealed that the city at Angel Stadium would only earn revenue over a ten-year period thanks to an insecure lease that allowed the city to earn only if certain ticketing and parking criteria were met Earned $1.9 million. However, the city's long-term policy allows council members to receive free tickets to games they've given away to campaign donors, friends, and themselveslike chips at Chuck E. Cheese.
Halos have become an urban version of The One Ring from The Lord of the Rings, challenging the ethics and judgment of all who fall under their influence.
Yesterday I was driving down Highway 57 and saw the Big A's halo light up announcing the victory of the Angels. Thanks to Ohtani's home run, they defeated the Texas Rangers 2-0 away.
The throwing and batting phenomenon is the only bright spot in another disappointing season that could be Ohtani's last on the team:he said publicly many timesHe wants to play for the winner and has no patience for reconstruction.
It's about time Anaheim took the same stance.
The city may have needed angels as the townspeople were looking for something to rally around. We are now a big city with big problems. If the Angels had gone to greener lands, we'd have a vacant 153-acre lot that could transform Anaheim a lot more than a franchise that wants every possible break but is doing nothing to deserve it.
Anaheimers: Have some boroughs build a stadium for the Halos - Las Vegas, Eastvale, Nashville - and say ArteGoodbyeAlready.