Diary of a Mad County

Jan. 4 to Jan. 10. And tired.

Saturday Jan. 6
Shhhhhh, they're all asleep.

Sunday Jan. 7
Watch an entire weekend slate of NFL playoff games. My son, who usually loves to pick sides and root for his team while making fun of yours, is uncharacteristically silent.

Monday Jan. 8
The trial between the city of Anaheim and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim begins today, and God help the city of Anaheim if it wins. A trial win for Anaheim would be disastrous, catastrophic, cataclysmic—in a word, really, really bad. Anaheim is arguing that Angels owner Arte Moreno violated the spirit of his agreement with the city when he renamed his team the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. When he did that, they say, the city lost out on all the revenue and prestige that come with having your name associated with a major-league team, you know, like the windfalls experienced by the folks in Tampa and Detroit and Oakland. Okay, let's say that a jury buys their argument and awards them millions, perhaps hundreds of millions, of dollars in damages. That would virtually guarantee that Angels owner Arte Moreno would start planning for a move out of the city when his lease is up in about 10 years. What's more—actually, less—is that Moreno would be less likely to spend money on high-priced free agents than he has done so far to great success with American League MVP Vlad Guerrero and American League Cy Young Award winner Bartolo Colon. Hey, Anaheim, you know what gets you less revenue and prestige than a name change? Having a crappy team that nobody wants to see. Three words: Kansas City Royals. Two more words: California Angels. The guy with the most to lose in all of this is Anaheim Mayor Curt Pringle, who's been the main agitator on this issue, despite the fact that people in and around his city have continued to support the Angels with record attendance. Pringle is one of these guys who rails against government regulation, unless it's something he wants regulated, and then it damn well is going to be regulated, whether it's a baseball team or a uterus, a man of such soaring principle that he said he would never attend a Los Angeles Angels game until they made the playoffs against the New York Yankees, and then he attended a Los Angeles Angels game. The Angels won that series. Pringle, who's up for re-election, better pray they win in court.

Tuesday Jan. 10

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