The Angels, born in 1961, never had made consecutive postseason appearances. They had eight logos in their history, and three division championships.
In 2003, they finished 19 games out of first place. But they sold 3 million tickets for the first time, and after the season Moreno invested $145 million in free agents, intent on transforming the image of the franchise from a mid-market team with a middling payroll to a large-market powerhouse that would challenge for a championship every year.
I obviously believed, from the marketing side, that we needed to go back to representing the region. We had to go back to the real name of the team, to Los Angeles Angels. There are 300,000 in Anaheim, 3 million in Orange County, 18 million in the metro area.
I just felt that if we could draw outside the little bubble that I believe the franchise was in — let's call it an average of 2 million — that would give us opportunity to grow our revenues.
If we were able to go out and sign an extra free agent, or if we had to pay someone that we had traded for a little bit more, that would give us a little bit of an edge to compete at a higher level. The Angels won the World Series in '02 and lost $20 million. A lot of people forget that.
While Disney owned them, they lost an average of $20 million a year, plus a lot of people forget that they put in over $100 million into the stadium, in capital improvements.