The Peter Principles (Ch. 2): The error of tyranny at Camden Yards

July 03, 2018 | Nestor Aparicio

consideration. If one can keep a team in contention throughout the season, one has given the fans what they deserve,” Mr. Angelos said.

He said he hoped to remove himself from the day-to-day affairs of the team, leaving them to several of his partners and to the team’s current front-office staff.

Angelos quickly moved to introduce the new management team for the Orioles. Bill DeWitt Jr., who chose to forgo the final bidding at the auction and instead join Team Angelos the previous day, was named the future Orioles vice chairman for baseball and current C.E.O. & president Larry Lucchino would be named vice chairman of operations.

The Sun said Lucchino “apparently would continue making operating decisions about the team.” Lucchino also was told he would be invited to buy a stock interest back in the team after selling his 9% to Team Angelos in the Jacobs liquidation.

The Team Angelos partner with the second-biggest stake in ownership was local author Tom Clancy, who Angelos told the audience would be overseeing Orioles public affairs and special events.

Angelos said all of the right things and preached patience and his full effort to building a winner for Baltimore, something the fans hadn’t seen since the 1983 World Series, which was the Orioles’ last postseason berth. Angelos understood he would be held under the microscope and wanted to be a good steward of the franchise.

“But if you are a fan and in a position of being the team managing partner, that is when you have to exercise restraint and judgment and remember the opinions you have as a fan don’t always apply,” Angelos said.

“I am a good listener,” he bragged. “I like to get input from the professionals. In the beginning, I am sure it will be necessary for me to devote substantial time to the Orioles. But as I become more attuned to the operation of a major-league franchise, that amount of time may be reduced.”

When asked if there were enough hours in the day to be a great baseball owner and a great lawyer, Angelos said: “I think I can handle both.”

There were salutations all over Baltimore as the team came back to local ownership with a litany of huge names and stars and an owner who pledged his money into buying the Orioles under the mantra that he loved his hometown and that his hometown deserved a championship.

“He’ll [Angelos] put a ballclub on the field, spend money and make us proud,” then-Governor William Donald Schaefer said. “Peter is a winner. He didn’t buy the team to lose. I don’t think he’ll be afraid to spend money. If there is one guy he needs to get over the top, he’ll get him. He’s not a shrinking violet.”

Local sportswear mogul Leonard “Boogie” Weinglass, who was pledged to buy a small stake as a part of Team Angelos, was effusive in the newspaper: “I’m delighted to have him in charge. Peter’s the man!”

Beyond the questions about the people involved, Angelos once again shared his thoughts about the Orioles and “thinking local.”

At his press conference, Angelos said: “It seemed to me incongruous that a city as thriving as Baltimore and a state as wonderful as Maryland always required help from out of town with our ballclub. I made it very clear that control of the ballclub will be in Baltimore completely.”

“There is going to be no sharing of authority in the running of the ballclub with anybody from outside the state,” Angelos said. “I told Mr. DeWitt quite candidly that there was no way that ownership of the club was going outside the state. It was not going to Cincinnati. It was not going to New York. I think there came a point where he realized that.”

DeWitt told The Sun he accepted a non-controlling interest because of his desire to have a more hands-on role win the operation of a baseball franchise. “I’m a limited partner with the Rangers and don’t have any active involvement in the operation of the team,” DeWitt said. “Here, I would represent the ownership group with respect to those kinds of decisions. The day-to-day operation of the club will be like it is now, but I would expect to advise the ownership on major