I’ve posted about this at length before. Peter Angelos’s transfer of a controlling interest in the Orioles to anyone, including his family members, will require approval by the owners (75%, or over 50% if the transfer is triggered by Peter’s death and is to his wife or his sons).
If such a transfer is proposed or made, I think it’s a safe bet that the Commissioner will oppose its routine approval. In that event, I think these are among the possibilities.
1. The owners could turn down the transfer summarily, based on the Angelos’s historic lack of cooperation with MLB. Unless he’s even more arrogant than I think he is, I think the Commissioner, having learned from the bungling of the MASN arbitration, will counsel the owners not to do that.
2. The owners could override the Commissioner’s recommendation and approve the transfer. I think that’s doubtful.
3. The owners could approve the transfer, combined with a settlement of the MASN dispute.
4. The Angelos sons could agree to sell their controlling interest in the Orioles (they won’t have to pay income taxes if they sell right away) as part of a resolution of the MASN dispute,
5. Citing the consistent poor performance of the Orioles, their declining attendance, Peter Angelos’s past violations of debt limitations, the team’s outlying refusal to invest in an international infrastructure, and the difficulty of competing in the AL East, the Commissioner could call for an intensive review of the Orioles’ financial situation. As I’ve written before, after Peter Angelos’s estate has forked over about 50 percent of its non-Orioles assets to pay estate taxes (or if Peter himself were to pay the same amount in gift taxes if he tried to make the transfer before his death), the financial outlook for the Angeloses and the Orioles would be pretty bleak, and I would expect that review to lead to a recommendation by the Commissioners, and a vote of the owners, to turn down the transfer on grounds that are ostensibly in the interest of preserving the competitiveness of the Baltimore franchise.