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Team must disclose that real home is Anaheim

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- The California Assembly decided Monday
that the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim are engaged in what amounts
to false advertising and approved a bill that would require the
team to disclose on their tickets, ads and other promotional
material that its home is in Anaheim.

The measure, sent to the Senate by a 41-17 vote, also would
apply to any other professional team that used a geographic
location in its name that did not reflect where it played the
greatest number of its games -- unless the team's home city or
county agreed to waive the disclosure requirement.

Assemblyman Tom Umberg said his bill would expose
"deceptiveness in sports advertising." He also said it would
protect the interests of Anaheim, which gave the Angels a break on
stadium rent in exchange for prominently including the city in the
team's name.

"This is a taxpayer issue," said Umberg, whose district
includes Angel Stadium. "The taxpayers of Anaheim bargained to
have their name in a marquee position. The Angels have been very
cute by turning it on their head."

The Angels began play in 1961 as the Los Angeles Angels, then
changed their name to the California Angels when they moved from
Los Angeles to Anaheim in 1966. They became the Anaheim Angels in
1997.

The team changed its name to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
in January, a move team officials said was sparked by a desire to
attract more fans, advertisers and broadcast contracts by
emphasizing the team's connection to the nation's second-largest
media market.

The Angels drew 3,375,677 last season, the third-highest total
in baseball behind the New York Yankees and Los Angeles Dodgers.

Anaheim is challenging the name change in court, contending it
violates terms of the Angels' stadium lease agreement with the
city.

"Deceptive is a very strong word," Angels spokesman Tim Mead
said. "The bottom line for the Angels is we're a month-and-a half
into the season and our two primary focuses throughout this whole
process has been our performance on the field and maintaining a
consistently positive experience for our fans at Angel Stadium of
Anaheim."