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Arte Moreno not selling Angels as Shohei Ohtani deal looms

The Angels aren’t going to be changing hands.

The team announced Monday that owner Arte Moreno is ending the exploratory process of selling the team, which began in August, and will “continue ownership throughout the 2023 season and beyond.”

“During this process, it became clear that we have unfinished business and feel we can make a positive impact on the future of the team and the fan experience,” Moreno said in a statement released by the team. “This offseason we committed to a franchise record player payroll and still want to accomplish our goal of bringing a World Series Championship back to our fans. We are excited about this next chapter of Angels Baseball.

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim owner Arte Moreno looks on before a preseason MLB game
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim owner Arte Moreno looks on before a preseason MLB game.
Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

“We are grateful to Galatioto Sports Partners for their outstanding efforts throughout the process that allowed us to meet with a number of highly qualified individuals and groups who expressed strong interest in the Club. However, as discussions advanced and began to crystallize, we realized our hearts remain with the Angels, and we are not ready to part ways with the fans, players, and our employees.”

Moreno, 76, purchased the team for $183.5 million in 2023, becoming the first Mexican-American owner of a U.S. sports franchise. The franchise was valued at $2.2 billion by Forbes in March 2022.

While the evaluations have shot up in his two decades of ownership, recent years have not provided a strong on-field product. Los Angeles has not had a winning record or made the playoffs since 2014 — despite having two of the game’s biggest stars in Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani on its roster.

Shohei Ohtani #17 of the Los Angeles Angels pitches against the Oakland Athletics
Two-way star Shohei Ohtani is in line for a massive payday.
Getty Images

While Trout is locked up for the next seven years, Ohtani is scheduled to be a free agent after the 2023 season. Early estimates — including one by The Post’s Jon Heyman — put a new Ohtani deal in the $500 million range with a bevy of potential suitors.

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