Nineteen years ago today (Aug. 2, 1993), a group led by Baltimore attorney Peter Angelos purchased the Orioles for a then-record $173 million. “This brings back control of the club to Marylanders, but to be candid, I didn’t think the price would go so high,” Angelos said at the time. Fast-forward to 2012 and the Orioles franchise is valued at $460 million, according to Forbes. And the current record price tag for a Major League Baseball club? Try $2 billion, the staggering amount Magic Johnson and investors paid for the Los Angeles Dodgers earlier this year. That’s more than 11.5 times what Angelos and company plunked down for the Birds nearly two decades ago.
We dug into The Sun’s photo archives and found this picture, taken by Gene Sweeney Jr., of Angelos and Gov. William Donald Schaefer after the 1993 sale. Schaefer called the deal “terrific” news for the city of Baltimore and state of Maryland, and said “He’ll [Angelos] put a ballclub on the field, spend money and make us proud.”
We’ll leave it to long-suffering Orioles fans to chew on that comment. But here’s The Sun’s Aug. 3, 1993 story on the Orioles sale, in case you’re interested in stepping back in time: “Angelos, DeWitt team up to buy Orioles.”
Baltimore attorney Peter Angelos, right, and Gov. William Donald Schaefer share a laugh during a news conference on Aug. 3, 1993 at Camden Yards. Schaefer called the then-record $173 million purchase of the Orioles by Angelos’ group “terrific” and said, “He [Angelos] will put a ballclub on the field, spend money and make us proud.” (Gene Sweeney Jr./Baltimore Sun Photo)