Ripken interested in buying the Orioles
BALTIMORE -- Cal Ripken Jr. reiterated an interest in buying the Baltimore Orioles on Wednesday at a press conference hosted by the Baseball Writers' Association of America in honor of his election to the National Baseball Hall of Fame.
"I haven't been approached," he said, according to the Associated Press. "I've thought about that, yes, and if an opportunity were to arise, if Mr. Angelos would want to sell the club, it would be an interesting thought process to go through."
Peter Angelos, the chairman and CEO of the Orioles, recently denied a report that he was interested in selling the team -- to Ripken or anyone else. In December, a report by FOXSports.com indicated that Angelos and Ripken were engaged in talks about a potential sale, but Angelos denied it adamantly in an interview with the Baltimore Sun.
"There is no question that Cal and I have a great relationship," Angelos told Sun reporters in a story that ran on Dec. 15. "He was a great player for the Orioles, and I have an affection for him. But what's being reported, there is simply no substance to it. It has not happened. There have been no such discussions."
Ripken owns a share of two Minor League franchises -- the Class A Aberdeen Ironbirds and the Class A August Greenjackets. The Abderdeen team, located in the icon's hometown, plays as a Baltimore affiliate. Ripken has also built small-scale replicas of Camden Yards and Memorial Stadium at his complex, which caters to youth baseball.
"Right now, I'm very content in learning the business in the Minor Leagues and also developing kids' complexes and really growing the game of baseball at the grass-roots level," Ripken said on Wednesday. "But certainly, if that ever became an opportunity, I certainly would look to be a part of that."
Angelos issued a statement regarding Ripken as recently as Tuesday, but it was to celebrate the shortstop's election to the Hall of Fame. Ripken, who was named on a record 537 ballots and carried the third-highest percentage in history (98.53), will be inducted into the Hall with fellow electee Tony Gwynn in late July.
"For 21 seasons and 3,001 games -- 2,632 consecutively -- Cal gave his heart and soul to this franchise, this city, and to the game of baseball," Angelos wrote. "Throughout his career, he played the game with integrity, determination and class. His records and statistics are impressive. He played the game at a consistently high level for more than two decades. But Cal Ripken is more than just records and statistics.
"He is the Iron Man who was born in Maryland, played his entire career for his hometown team, and gave everything he had day in and day out, year after year. Cal showed everyone how the game should be played."