Old stadium, new hangups

ANGEL STADIUM in Anaheim (Flickr/Ray LAC).

UPDATE: The Anaheim City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to back out of the deal to sell Angel Stadium, citing possible issues of corruption.


It’s one of the ironies of the 2022 Major League Baseball season that when the Los Angeles Angels are off to their best season in a decade, their accomplishments are close to being pushed aside by the controversy over the proposed sale of Angel Stadium.

The mess, which includes allegations of improper behavior by members of the Anaheim City Council, threatens to derail the sale of the land – now owned by the City of Anaheim. The plan was to not only rebuild or replace the aging stadium – fourth-oldest in the MLB – but also stop or critically delay plans to build thousands of units of affordable housing in the city.

There’s an FBI investigation into to the conduct of Mayor Harry Sidhu – who resigned today (Monday) – and the Angels have given the city a deadline of June 14. The next two council meetings are scheduled for Tuesday, May 24 and Tuesday, June 7.

The proposed $320 million deal for the 150-acre site is on hold by order of an Orange County Superior Court judge – at the request of the state attorney general’s office – because of concerns raised by the possibility of misconduct at City Hall.

Also at issue is whether the agreement was in violation of state affordable housing law by not first offering the land for such housing in Anaheim.

This whole mess raises a lot of other questions, including the – remote – possibility of relocating the team, which is obligated to Anaheim through 2028. According to the Los Angeles Times, owner Arte Moreno has looked at Tustin and Long Beach.

Does this augur the possibility the Halos might leave Anaheim and Orange County for greener pastures some day? And why? Well, there is more than one reason that today’s baseball strategies are called “Moneyball.”

AND NOW BACK TO LIVE ACTION: Happy Days are here again for local baseball fans. As you all know, both the Angels and the Dodgers are at or near the top of their respective divisions.

The Angels (26-17) are idle today (Monday) and begin a six-game homestand on Tuesday with the first two against the Texas Rangers, followed by four against the Toronto Blue Jays.

The Dodgers (27-13) are visiting the Washington Nationals today through Wednesday, then the Arizona Diamondbacks Thursday through Sunday.

PLAYOFFS 2.0. The CIF-SS sports playoffs are over, but the regional and state playoffs go on and on. In some cases, the tournaments will extend beyond graduation day for the schools, making an interesting point of which is more important.

Anyway, Round 1 of the baseball regionals is set for Tuesday, May 31 with games set to start at 4 p.m. The regional semifinals will be on Thursday, June 2 at 4 p.m. and the regional title games on Saturday, June 4 at 4 p.m.

The brackets will be available on Sunday, May 29. We’ll post the brackets and pairings if any of our local teams are involved.

FINAL OUT:  “These guys are the worst in the league. They can talk but as soon as you try to throw stuff, that’s different” – San Diego Padres outfielder Jurickson Profar after being peppered with a baseball and a beer bottle during a game Saturday in San Francisco. Sportmanship, Drunk Fan Style.

Sports Monday is written by Pete Zarustica.

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