Angelos: Proximity would cause mediocrity

BALTIMORE -- Orioles owner Peter Angelos remains steadfastly
opposed to the Montreal Expos moving to Washington, D.C. or
Northern Virginia, insisting that two teams could not be successful
operating so close to each other.

"Another major league baseball franchise in close proximity
would result in two mediocre franchises from a competitive
standpoint," he said Friday in a telephone interview.

Angelos said a team operating within a 60-mile radius of
Baltimore would siphon revenue from the Orioles, who draw a
significant portion of their fans from suburban Washington.

But he wouldn't mind seeing the Expos move to Norfolk, Va.,
which is also vying for the team.

"That's 180 miles away from Baltimore," Angelos said. "We're
100 miles away from Philadelphia, and that works fine."

If the Expos wind up in Washington, Angelos will begrudgingly
accept the move.

"Unfortunately, I have no choice," he said. "After all,
Washington is also my capital."

Angelos spent millions of dollars during the offseason to bring
in free agents Javy Lopez, Miguel Tejada, Rafael Palmeiro and
Sidney Ponson. The Orioles are 26-29, but the owner remains
confident the team will soon have a winning record.

"As soon as the weather gets better, the hitters will come
through," he said. "And the pitching, I predict, will also
improve. The ingredients are there."