The Los Angeles Angels have decided it’s now or never. On Tuesday, the team would opt out of the Angel Stadium lease with the city of Anaheim. Now, there’s possibilities for the team moving elsewhere…or just staying put in their longtime home.
The team and the city will negotiate a new deal that would potentially keep the Angels in Anaheim. But the club will also have the option to explore the idea of building itself a brand new home. The Angels ended the lease on the last day possible before 2028, which means the team is allowed to relocate after the 2019 season.
“As we look to the future, we need the ability to continue to deliver a high-quality fan experience beyond what the original lease allows,” Angels president John Carpino told ESPN. “It is important that we look at all our options and how we can best serve our fans now and in the future.”
Angels spokesperson Marie Garvey says the team will sit down with the mayor and city council after next month’s elections to determine the team’s future home. Angels Stadium — fourth oldest in the league behind Fenway, Wrigley and Dodger Stadium — needed renovations in 2014. But negotiations between the city and the team came to a halt. Owner Arte Moreno said prior to the 2017 season that the team had no plans of relocating. But he would also note that the club was open to a new stadium.
Moreno says that a new home would take time, though.
“It’s going to take some time to get ourselves prepared to see which direction we’re going to go,” Moreno said. “We have flexibility, but acquiring land and getting a proper partner and getting prepared in California is a three-, four-year process.”
After 2014, when negotiations with Anaheim ended, the team explored candidates for a new home. Los Angeles, Irvine, Carson and Tustin were among those candidates. Instead, the Angels opted to spend millions on renovations to Angels Stadium. The team has drawn large crowds over the past 16 seasons. Even during their nine-season playoff victory drought. But there are lots of things that could happen, especially after the election city leaders.
Until then, the Angels will continue to play in Anaheim.