Pam Wood: A Banner report on stadium money and Inauguration Week for Moore

Screen Shot 2023 01 06 at 2.09.33 PM
Screen Shot 2023 01 06 at 2.09.33 PM
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Reporter Pamela Wood of The Baltimore Banner tells Nestor what she knows about the Ravens new stadium lease and the Orioles future as Maryland is about to undergo a massive change of government in Annapolis.


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Pamela Wood, Nestor Aparicio

Nestor Aparicio  00:01

Back at W N S, T Towson Baltimore and Baltimore positive still broadcasting and high quality mono sound and am 5070 We’re putting the Maryland crabcakes we’re back together put the band back together it’s 2023 a new year and there’s new crabcakes to be had. We’re gonna be a GNA Coney Island hot dog no longer in Highland town Robin eaten them for the first 53 years of my life. We’re gonna be out in White Marsh. I had some breakfast out there this summer. Gonna be visiting with Andy for crabcake Talk brought to you by the Maryland lottery of a handful of holiday cash crops a handful of ravens leftovers and meanders through the winter, and big jackpots as well at the lottery in our friends, winter, nation. 866 90 nation I’ve been talking about that. I have waited to have a lot of people on into the new year because I’m like when I just had him or her on recently, but it’s been like going on for five months now since Pam would join us over costs on the Maryland crabcake tour. It was so long ago, we didn’t even have an election. Now we were talking about the election. On the front end. She of course is at the bottom of Banner. And I’m pleased to have her back on for a lot of reasons. But more than that she covered the stadium story earlier this week. And I’m sort of tipped off to I knew this thing was sort of coming down the pike and I think she tweeted about it as well. Pamela watt joins us from the Baltimore band where they just hired our friend Jonah Schaffer over in the Baltimore Sun to cover all things ravens and postseason. How are you happy new year to you?

Pamela Wood  01:20

Happy New Year, NASA. Thanks for having me. I’m excited.

Nestor Aparicio  01:23

One of the most important thing for you as the Orioles are zero and zero and it’s fresh chance here this year. You come at this honest, you even tweeted you love covering sports. When you’re given the opportunity to do this. You have sort of flown into a space that I have covered from and you know, Chad Steele and Steve would be disappointed to hear but I was talking about this stuff in 1993 and 94, when her Belgrade was trying to steal a team before John Moe came all that goes into lorring an NFL team that we lost here in March of 1984. Bringing a team back and then how do you get the team stay you build the stadium the stadiums here you keep the stadium up, you bring Billy Joel in you bring Jay Z in you do you try to get the World Cup, you do what you do. But this is really a state money issue and where all these franchises have gone in value, and what the future holds for all of them once they see the bigger shiny city built in Atlanta or New England or in Vegas or wherever would be but Steve shot he made a decision to stay here and I’m good with all of that. But I do want to understand this $600 million dollars and I know that’s where you come in.

Pamela Wood  02:26

Yeah, absolutely. So the two stadiums we have in Baltimore m&t Bank Stadium for the ravens and Oriole Park at Camden Yards for the Orioles. Of course. They’re owned by the state, the Maryland stadium authority, they were built and paid for by taxpayers. So you me we own those stadiums. So we have a stake, you know, financially and what happens there. And, of course, the city as a whole economically, having those teams in, you know, being being drivers of, you know, you know, tourism and locals as well. So, in order for those teams to play at the stadiums, they have to reach a deal with the government of the state of Maryland in order to have a lease and the Ravens just signed a new lease for m&t Bank Stadium. It’s going to keep them there for a minimum of 15 years. And then there’s two five year options. So could be 25 more years that the ravens are here in Baltimore, playing in m&t.

Nestor Aparicio  03:21

Well, and that’s, you know, again, I was a guy trying so hard and I always tell this sad story of being at the bar at bodegas with champagne on ice. The second one when they gave Charlotte the first team second press conference was Jacksonville out in Chicago. This was the famous one where Mayor Schaefer cry Governor Schaefer then cried, and Paul tadley booth told us to build a museum. We’ve come a long way, right a couple of parades, quarterbacks, controversies, coaches, one of them was been my partner for the last 15 years as well and coach Brian Billick, the significance of the franchise. This money and where it comes from and who agrees to it I remembered all of this when Schaefer was saying to then Jack Kent Cooke, you’re not building a stadium and Laurel, I’m not giving you infrastructure, to where a 15 year deal. Some fans may say what was 30 years first on why 50? Well, the stadium is getting a little older and where they are 15 seems to be the standard real deal. I think through the industry. The NFL is happy about this, we’re happy that we’re not getting the franchise that’s moving off to London or Frankfurt. Let them figure that out with the chargers and the Jaguars and all these other teams that sort of have dangled because all of these franchises in my lifetime have dangled waiting for a stadium or some municipality mean look at the Washington team now dangling Maryland, DC and Virginia and they got a lame duck owner. And so stability is something we’d have when I started my career. 30 years we don’t have a football team, but the money where does the money come from? Who agrees to and I see this board is three people right? So there were there were three parties that rubber stamp this at the end What I remembered all the wrangling in Annapolis years ago when it came to binding, I think that about $300 million to build the stadium at the time that this is now double that money. And I’m not going to get into inflation in 30 years, and I’m good with all of this. I am trying to understand this $600 million, and why Chad Steele doesn’t want to talk about it. Why nobody wants to say where the when you’ve asked the questions. What when? What are we going to find out about this money? And what it’s really earmarked for? And who decided I get picked the ravens are the ones that say, we want that coat of paint? We want this? Am I correct in saying that? So let

Pamela Wood  05:35

me run down the basics of what happens here. So that’s yeah, the stadium opened in the late 90s. And taxpayers paid for it 200 some odd million dollars. So under the deal, the Ravens will pay $0 in rent to the state of Maryland, the ravens are responsible for the operations and kind of the regular maintenance maintenance of the stadium. And that last year amounted to about $11 million. So you know, they’re doing the upkeep on the stadium, the amusement tax goes partially to the state partially to the city. That’s you know, when those taxes that you pay, that if I buy $100

Nestor Aparicio  06:11

ticket for the playoff game, what what how much of that money goes to not the league or the to literally the state,

Pamela Wood  06:20

I’d have to check I believe the amusement and emission taxes 10% I could do

Nestor Aparicio  06:26

to get a grip on how much when we go there and buy a beer and do all these things, how much the state really does drink in from that for free rent, right? I mean, free rents free rent, we’ve talked about these billionaires and the value of the team shooting up over a billion dollars since the last time you and I got together. When you and I got together at cost this we’re like, Well, you know, the, if the Washington TIF were five, there were three and a half. Now the Washington is we’re seven and there were five. So that’s how quickly the valuations of these things go up. So we are talking about a valuation that went up a billion in the states giving them 600 million. And this was years ago was all you could do to get 200 million and frees up everybody just to get the deal done. And the sweetheart deal for RT, which was free read come here, don’t stay in Cleveland move. We want the team here. This is a much better deal than having to wrangle a new team. I’ll agree to all of that. I’m just trying to figure out who voted on this, like, Where Where did the agreement have to have and it really felt like it’s rubber stamped from the beginning because that’s the way it is for these franchise because you want to lose the franchise.

Pamela Wood  07:27

Yeah, and these terms of the, you know, the Ravens not paying rent, but they pay the operations and maintenance and you know, the amusement tax goes to the government. This is all pretty much in keeping with the agreement they had in place already, you know, for the last, you know, 20 plus years. Now, let me explain the $600 million part. So the Maryland General Assembly, our state lawmakers passed a bill in 20. I almost had it earlier this year. But we’re in a new year in 2022. They pass legislation that give the Maryland stadium authority, the ability to spend up to $1.2 billion on the Orioles and the ravens to issue bonds to finance, you know, renovations and upgrades. And you know, both of these stadiums are beautiful stadiums. I enjoy them both. But you know, you’re in that sort of arms race a little bit with all the other cities and the teams and you see what they’re doing with there’s stadiums, and they’re in need of some upgrades. So that’s where state lawmakers were involved. The lease itself was voted on by the Board of Public Works, which is wonky sounding. And so basically the governor, the Comptroller, and the treasurer,

Nestor Aparicio  08:35

especially it sounds like a board. It’s three people, right? Literally, it’s three and this was probably set up by shaved for 30 years ago to be a little bit of, we’re just gonna get this done. We’re not going to fight about that we’re going to three people we’re going to agree and we’re all going to come out Kumbaya, we’re going to do a deal, right? Well, the

Pamela Wood  08:50

the Board of Public Works, what they do is they are they sign off on all important and major state contracts. So, you know, when you’re, you know, talking about, you know, who you know, runs the airports or, you know, dredging in the Chesapeake Bay and like, you know, renovations and state government buildings, that’s what they do. It’s like contracts and a lot of it’s really routine, but sometimes there’s really big deal, public stuff that comes before that board, like the stadium lease. And so eventually we’ll see if the Orioles reach a deal with the Maryland stadium authority. If they do that’ll go before the same board as well. Governor, Comptroller and treasurer,

Nestor Aparicio  09:30

Sean. I’m famously anti Angelo’s here for the because I’ve been here I’ve witnessed what’s going on since we built the stadium and he bought it 30 years ago now. And it’s funny, I’m not even interested in that part of it. I and I was told weeks ago by some insiders that Steve wanted to get this done with Larry because he falls more on the Republican side and wanted to give Larry some bonbons on the way and make sure it got done and that the Orioles would be more thought thought to be more waiting on what so that they might get a better deal there. And or their father situation and or the mother’s issue and or the fact that they’re not in a hurry because they’re looking for the bigger, better deal and Nashville and other places may be involved in that Steve never allowed this to get messy even through to leadership groups because the cast was running the place this time last year Sashi brown now this time, but there is a point where the ravens are responsible for this money, correct, right, like this money will be earmarked by the Ravens via the stadium authority to do something to the state that doesn’t have to be in the stadium. Can they build a casino in the parking lot? I’m just trying to understand what, what the what the freedom of the money is, because I have Neil DeMoss coming on after you Pam, by the way, Pam wood is our guest from the Baltimore banner, she covered all things she covers all we’re gonna get into the rest of inaugurations and all this beyond beyond stadium and stuff. But I am really just trying to understand why they’re all so quiet and why there wasn’t more of, we’re going to do this, that and the other thing, and thank you very much for coming. And that might have been a little but they don’t run that way. Clearly, they intimidate and bully and, you know, media people like me, this last time we got together, but I’m just trying to figure out I can’t ask the questions anymore. So I’m sort of relying on you or them to have some transparency that they didn’t at least have earlier this week. What happens with this money, that’s twice the amount of money that built the stadium to begin with? It’s just a lot of money.

Pamela Wood  11:27

Yeah, so the renovations that would be forthcoming to m&t Bank Stadium, those contracts, my understanding is those will come before the Board of Public Works as well, that they will have to sign off on you know, the major work there is my understanding now, I am

Nestor Aparicio  11:43

for improving a state facility, right, like literally, Okay, fair enough.

Pamela Wood  11:47

Yeah, just like, you know, right now, they’re, they’re renovating the state house, they’re doing some repairs there. All those contracts went before the Board of Public Works. So it’s just much bigger scale. I asked Sashi Brown, you know, what could be coming? What might fans see what might play or see improvements to the stadium? And he said, you know, still yet to work that out. He wouldn’t give me any hints. I actually asked that any hints? And he said, Nope, sorry. Now, one thing did cast said previously was he was interested in the idea of adding more, you know, suite or club, you know, box type seating closer down to the field, you know, premium seating, you know, instead of being, you know, high up way closer to the playing field. So that’s something to Cass said before. I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s part of it. But you know, we really have to wait and see the ravens are being pretty tight lipped about, you know, what they’re going to pursue, you know, with the renovations,

Nestor Aparicio  12:37

what is standard, right, I mean, you’ve been to any of these new facilities and, and I even caught video, and again, I’m watching the games on TV like everybody else at this point. But I caught video the other day, from this week’s game, where like, there are fans now waiting outside the locker room underneath the Raven stadium, I saw the shotty and players walking past fans in the same way that I saw it in Dallas. So the access to that and the VIP part of that and the being closer to and where the band sets and like all of those parts of a smallish bowl but a bowl still big enough that could it could have housed World Cup soccer, which was a you know, tremendous loss. And I know we talked about that a little bit months ago, just in regard to the stadium, what else they can be used for Jay Z concert, Billy Joel concert, Springsteen’s on tour, like all of those kinds of things that this could be about Pam waters here, she does more than just stadium waiting on opening day, by the way, they open at Fenway Park, and they get the Yankees at home April 6. So I did add that to my schedule here, for you with this time of year, and you’ve been doing this a long time, even though you still look young and spry. But I saw those old porcelain daddy pictures here. But this time, every four years, there’s inauguration, there’s change in Annapolis. And we have been a state where there’s been a lot of God bless Mike bushes and different people that have been here a long, long time. That had been a part of it for a long, long time. Boy feels like things are about to change. And you’re a part of the world, right? Like it really feels like after eight. And we talked about this on the front end of what might happen. And I don’t think anybody gave Dan Cox a real opportunity, real chance to win. But so much has happened in the last couple of months that you and I got together, that I want to have fun with stadiums, shoddy and all that. But I really do want you to peel back. What we’re expecting in this massive change other than John Angelo’s in the Angeles family negotiating with us more for stadia, but there’s about to be a big big change happened here and I’m excited about it as a citizen. I really, really am.

Pamela Wood  14:31

Yeah, on January 18. We’re going to go from having Republican Governor Larry Hogan to Democratic governor Wes Moore, you know, eight years where we had some divided leadership in Annapolis, which has pros and cons. The General Assembly state lawmakers, they are, you know, two to one Democrats, they’re two thirds Democrats, they can kind of do whatever they want. But you know, Governor Hogan had his own ideas and influence and there was push and pull there for eight years now. We’re going into all Democrats That’s, and in addition, there’s some turnover. You know, some people retired, took other jobs, new people got elected and convinced Scott, you know, defeated. So there’s gonna be some fresh blood in Annapolis as well. It’s gonna be really interesting to see how Governor elect Westmore does, because he’s never governed before, you know, he’s not a mayor or county executive hasn’t been a lawmaker. He’s worked in the private sector and in the nonprofit world. You know, he’s he’s still building his team. And you know what, we’ll see how that’s gonna go. I think that’s going to be in particular, something really interesting to watch somebody who is truly an outsider to government, you know, has been involved in government. He’s, you know, testified before, you know, he’s gotten government grants before, but like, not really being in the government. And you know, how that plays out as governors, I think it’d be really fascinating storyline?

Nestor Aparicio  15:49

Well, you’ve been at this a long time, what’s gonna frustrate him?

Pamela Wood  15:54

Yeah, that’s, that’s a great question. One of the things that Governor elect Moore says all the time is that we’re going to go fast, and we’re going to be aggressive, and we’re, we’re going to make change and the wheels of government turn very slowly, even when you are, you know, if you if the even if the General Assembly is on board with everything he wants to do, it takes time to pass a bill and for the funding to trickle out and for you got to wait for the fiscal year to start and, you know, it’s it just things move a lot more slowly. And there’s a lot of pieces, then in the private sector. You know, when you run out a private business, if you want to change up your podcast, you can do it like that. You can’t do it like that in government. So that could potentially be an area of frustration for Westmore,

Nestor Aparicio  16:36

the Baltimore band in the newsroom there, I got I missed the news room, you know, every time I see an old movie, or All the President’s Men, and you know, I worked at the sun in the 80s in the 90s. So we still had those big cubicles. Daniel Calvert Street, it was even before they went down to port Covington. And your I want to give you some oxygen because this was always like they’re taking on a new thing. And I knew MTS it, Kimmy and we had them out. And it feels like it’s up and running. And it’s a bug for six months, and you’re putting together a sports department. And but more than that, I think the thing that the culture thing that I’ve seen on the outside was this necessity, in some way to drag y’all down to the Inner Harbor. And have you look at the boats out the window, which I did for 19 years at my window, and thinking about the city you’re serving to some degree. And I find that to be interesting. And I find for all of you, at least when you’re out tweeting about ducks in the harbor and doing different things around the city, that that it’s been different. The banner is different than the sun. And I don’t need to tell you because you worked at both of them.

Pamela Wood  17:38

Yeah, I mean, they’re there. They are different. They’re both great. You know, I subscribe to the Baltimore Sun. I have friends over there. I love being at the banner, though. Yeah, we are in the Inner Harbor. You know, just out the window. Next to me is your back. Definitely. So, yeah, it’s great to be in the newsroom. In the city. It’s a little odd sometimes to be in the Inner Harbor, because we’re kind of in a tourist area. You know, in downtown workers. We’re not like, in a real neighborhood where people live, but it’s actually fun. I get to see all the school kids go on their field trips, when I’m here and it’s nice that we can walk to City Hall walk to police headquarters, you know, walk to the to the courts to be like in this in the city is great after you know, the pandemic. There’s a lot of working from home and that sort of thing. And it’s really fun to be in Baltimore, which is the, you know, the heart of the community that we serve.

Nestor Aparicio  18:28

You know, people ask me like about my failed mayoral expectations. And when you live in the city, and you look out the window, and you see the potential and you’ve loved that your whole life and you look behind and see purple lights or red, white and blue lights this week, in regard to Mr. Hammill, Hamlin and, and, and seeing the city come to life on New Year’s Eve, or through the holidays, or the man who saved my wife’s life is from Germany. And when they landed Christmas night, everything was quiet, right? Because they landed Christmas afternoon. But we drove up through the harbor and saw the Christmas Village and the jerk. I love I miss it there. Don’t get me started. Now it’s and next week, it’ll be a year since I left but you guys moved in around then for you’re placing news and what you’re doing and the job you’re reporting on. And the stories and the latitude you’ve had is one of the senior folks there. One of the first thing is they would say I’ve seen the thing kind of come to life from TEDMED a tool was telling me about in his car two years ago conceptually, I know this guy, he wants to start a paper, you know, to where it is. Y’all should be proud. Really. I mean, you’ve made a dent in storytelling and made a difference already. And I think you knew that. But But more than that the coming together of all of it. I mean, it hadn’t even been a year. Plus literally Yeah, it’s

Pamela Wood  19:48

it’s a it’s for me it’s a really great opportunity to still serve the community and, you know, decode politics and state government, you know, for our readers, and you we’ve come so far What the Baltimore banner looks like today is different from what it looked like six months ago. And six months from now it’s going to be even different. And you mentioned Jonah Schafer, he is part of a sports department that we are building. I’m super excited to have him on board with Andy Casca. Covering the Orioles. The sports department is hiring like crazy. We’re working on pushing further out into the suburbs. We brought on my former editor, Rick Hutsul is a columnist covering Annapolis and Anne Arundel County, and we’re looking to get reporters down there. It’s really exciting. I hope people stay tuned. And, you know, we’ve we’ve got that great deal right now for $1 for six months, and hopefully you’ll you’ll get a taste of what we haven’t see, you know, we’re gonna bring even more and more to the Greater Baltimore area in the months to come.

Nestor Aparicio  20:43

I want to turn this on to the journalism side for me and getting thrown out by the Ravens sort of you know, I’m not speaking anything other than truth. But after the game this week in Cincinnati, there will be maybe three reporters Jonas is on your team. Now. Sometimes he went sometimes he didn’t go and there will be Jamison and Jeff’s Rebeck before Jeff’s was on paternity leave here this year. There’s so you reporters left, which is the really highly offensive part for me. When Chad’s deals threatening me bullying me or throwing me out like all of that. There’s so few people left asking questions. What does that look like at a Westmore inauguration in the day after and the General Assembly in Annapolis versus a younger version of you, let’s say a few years ago, but being really frank and honest when you were capitol and all the there was there was just so much more journalism being done. And I don’t like it at the football level, even talking about $600 million for the richest guy in the state who’s got a $5 billion entity getting free money. I talk about it more from like the real stuff that you’re covering, which isn’t just the business taking advantage of government. It’s government people taking advantage of government, which we’ve had a lot of in the city that I know you’ve covered unhealthy Holly and all the other things that have gone on and gift cards, but asking the questions and accountability. I’m I’m flattered you spend time with me because your level of understanding the wonkiness of all of this, it isn’t for any everyone. I mean, they need people like you that are seasoned people there. What does that look like percentage wise, day to day because I I hear horror stories in small towns and other places where papers have literally dried up knock on wood and not you know, like all of that. At least we have a couple of places left because it looked like everybody was going away at one point.

Pamela Wood  22:31

Yeah, well, I mean, I think the role of journalists and how I view my job is to, you know, explain and translate what’s going on in government, but also to ask those questions and to bring accountability, you know, to the actions of the government, what they’re doing in our name, and with our tax dollars, and the State House press corps is smaller than it than it once was. Certainly, there’s a lot of quality people we’re working really hard. We’re smaller. I’m glad the Baltimore banners on the scene, because now we’ve got, you know, a few more reporters down there in the statehouse asking questions and, you know, that didn’t exist before. So it’s important across all needs to have that and you know, an example of the importance of the local press and for people to pay attention, you look at Congressman elect George Santos up in New York. He’s the guy who like, lied multiple things about his resume, his business, his education, it was all just completely fabricated. And a little local paper up there, did some coverage of it. But nobody really paid attention. And then the New York Times dropped a big story after he’d already won the election. And it’s like, people didn’t have that information to make that that choice at the ballot box. But people should have been paying attention because it was those local reporters and I’ll say one thing about what it looks like in Annapolis on inauguration day on January 18, there are going to be a million reporters covering the inaugural ceremony of Governor elect Westmore. But what happens on January 19, it’s gonna go back down to the same group of about 15 or 20 of us who were there every day, you know, writing about what he’s doing what the lawmakers are doing. You know what we’ll get a lot on that day, but it’s the day to day every single day that matters the most

Nestor Aparicio  24:11

15 or 20. You just outed yourself. You gave me an update. How many were there in 1995? A turn of the century. Was it

Pamela Wood  24:20

before my time?

Nestor Aparicio  24:22

Were there there were a lot more than that at one point. Correct. There

Pamela Wood  24:25

were more and we’ve lost you know, we’ve lost publications in Maryland, the the weekly Gazette newspapers in Prince George’s and Montgomery. A lot of the regional papers used to send you know, a Statehouse reporter. You know, the Annapolis paper, Cecil County paper, Salisbury, Hagerstown, Frederick, they used to send people every single day to cover the General Assembly and now a lot of them don’t they’ll just come from time to time, or the rely on the Associated Press. So that’s where we really seen a diminishment or the Baltimore Sun used to have four people, and now they have to. So that’s sort of that’s kind of where You’re seeing it. So it is it’s definitely less. But there are good reporters down there. I like competing against them. And working alongside them every day. We’re still working just as hard even though there’s fewer of us.

Nestor Aparicio  25:09

Pam wood is our guest though you should give her a follow and certainly give them a chance over at the Baltimore band or P word reporter, Pamela Wookie. She follows us which we appreciate as well. We’re allowed to be on Twitter. They don’t like journalists so much on Twitter lately. Last thing for you. You said Wes, it’s been a lot of journalists on the 18th. And cover, my wife wants to go to the ball because she saw the dresses and said, hey, it’s a ball. Let’s go and I’m like, Alright, so I’m

Pamela Wood  25:35

gonna be a good party.

Nestor Aparicio  25:36


I’m going to shave up and clean my hair. I’m going to do it upright, and I’m gonna roll VIP as best I can. I would say this, that there’s a rockstar quality to him that comes along with the turf of who he is and the energy he brings in. And he swore to me that day, he sat next to you a Costas that that time cup to two and a half years ago, Christmas two years ago, Christmas, we had him on and he was literally not running. There was no mention. I went back and watch the interview didn’t he didn’t feel like a gubernatorial you feel like he felt like a guy running the business and was proud of Baltimore that was on the maybe something great, but we didn’t know what that was going to be. Don said he thought he was gonna run for mayor at some point at that time. And now he goes into this position in such a unique I mean, there’s just so many unique stories as a writer of writings, that if you come in from the outside and say, Who is this guy? And what is this? It’s a hell of a story in a lot of ways. And people want to tell the story. And it’s probably, of all the inaugurations of all the things that are going to happen a week and a half from now, in the news cycle. This is going to be an above the fold thing, not just in Annapolis, or Baltimore, or here.

Pamela Wood  26:49

Yeah, well, one thing that’s important to remember about Wes Moore is he is not only as he Maryland’s first black governor, all of our governors have been, you know, white guys, there have only been four black governors in the history of the United States. And only two of those were elected. Two of them were, you know, one was appointed, and one was the lieutenant governor who was elevated. So only two actually got elected in their own right, he’s the third elected black governor in the history of the entire country, which is kind of insane. When you think about it, we’re in 2023,

Nestor Aparicio  27:18

just make some water stop for a minute. And I have to do the math on that. And it’s almost like black football coaches in the NFL, when you know, when a math basis, you have to sit back and say, How is that possible? And then you’re like, Oh, I grew up to Reagan, I sort of get it. You know, I I get where we were five years ago around here. And it’s remarkable. I mean, it’s it’s an incredible story. And it’s a story I think the state should drink in to some degree. But I think nationally, I’m going to have relatives that live other places that are going to know plenty about this by shoot J January 21. And I would think, right,

Pamela Wood  27:52

well, yeah. And also, you know, the Democratic Party nationally, you know, they’re looking for new generation of leadership. I mean, you know, President Joe Biden, not exactly a spring chicken, you know, you know, speaker, former speaker, Nancy Pelosi is, you know, same thing. They’re looking for these younger folks to take the party forward into next generation. And what’s more, he’s 44 years old. He’s part of that conversation already, even though he hasn’t even governed a day in his life. He’s the kind of person that the Democrats are looking for.

Nestor Aparicio  28:21

Well, and certainly Barack Obama didn’t run Illinois at the time. Pam, I’ll let you get back to reporting and doing all this stuff. What’s on your mind is the new year begins other than I mean, the Oreo stadium thing that now like maybe I’ll put the lead at the end, which is the Orioles in peril John says they’re gonna be here as long as the rockets red glare. knows what happens. You don’t you don’t know you have no

Pamela Wood  28:43

it’s it’s the whole situation is very messy with the Angelo’s family and the future of the law firm and the team and the family fighting in court. And while all that is happening, you know, there’s been negotiations going on between the Orioles and the stadium authority. And we’ve heard those rumors, you know, does John want to take the team to Nashville or he says no, and, you know, the commissioner says the Orioles are gonna stay in Baltimore. Like who knows exactly what the truth is or what’s going to happen, but certainly the Ravens secured their long term future here. I knew the state government the you know, the outgoing governor wants to keep the Orioles here wants to strike a deal. But you know, I haven’t gotten any insight on how far along those negotiations have progressed and I don’t know if that’s how much that’s tangled up in the legal mess as well. But that is something we’re watching to see Do they do the Orioles now I’m going to do on and does the Ravens deal maybe provide a template for the Orioles? You know, we’re gonna wait and see maybe we’ll get that in 2023 all these

Nestor Aparicio  29:43

primarily men who own these baseball teams. They all lie so I just as a journalist, I’ve just been through it. I just don’t believe it. I believe it when I see the ink on the paper and where they are. It’s a fascinating debate now that it is the bait Because the Ravens deals done, as we were reporting here, and you report it on Wednesday, at the Baltimore banner, I would think the team is worth more without a lease. And that’s crazy to me to think that about Camden Yards and the city and the future and where they are and where the money lies and where the future money lies and where the corporate money lies and where the sport is, and where the stadium is located. And the demographics of our city and just all of that, that we’ve seen in Atlanta and other places, and what how baseball thinks how baseball things baseball, doesn’t think we’re moving the Baltimore Orioles anywhere, but I would think the franchise is worth a whole lot more in other places. And from a valuation standpoint, they’re more valuable without a lease. And if that’s the case, then that would explain a lot of it to me. I don’t know that to be true. But I’m, I’m registering that, because that’s the next thing to me to say, Well, why wouldn’t they have at least when they have more value to the next ownership group or wherever? Until I see the lease? I’m always going to be as a journalist asking questions about that, Pam.

Pamela Wood  30:59

Yeah, and certainly the city and the state have, you know, a huge motivation to get a lease deal done and keep the Orioles here? I mean, could you imagine Camden Yards being empty? Like, what would happen there? You know, it’s this beautiful stadium. And then, if there was no baseball team, they’re like, what happens? We’d have this giant like hole, you know, right on right near downtown. That is sort of a nightmare scenario scenario for the city in the state, and they don’t want that to happen. So that’s their motivation, you know, to try and keep the Orioles and likewise, the Ravens. But you know, how far do you go at what cost? You know, you don’t want to like give away the farm. But you really want to keep these here. Because, you know, it’s not like an empty office building an empty stadium is, you know, would just be a disaster for, for for Baltimore. So, you know, it’s it’s interesting to see the motivations on the different sides. And, you know, no way to know for me, certainly what’s going to happen.

Nestor Aparicio  31:48

Pam, I began this journey 31 years ago, last month without a football team begging for football team trying to get a fuzzy, I completely understand what happens when you lose one of these so that it is a momentous thing. That’s the shotty. Sign this deal. And even though we don’t know a lot about it, you’ll be reporting on it at the Baltimore banner. I’ll certainly have my radar up as well. Pamela White can be found at the Baltimore banner at six months for buck, go take it. That’s a that’s a great deal. Six, six bucks for six months for a buck. You can’t beat that. So go out to the Baltimore banner, subscribe. Stay local, and I appreciate you. I really feel like I’ve come down in this segment for you because there’s been no crabcake involved. So next time we get together, we’ll get the crap kicked. We’re gonna have a new governor and maybe the baseball See, you’re optimistic on the Orioles? Right. Are you a little disappointed the offseason spending? Are you good?

Pamela Wood  32:39

I mean, I don’t know last year was just such a delight. right with it with the team that was like fun to watch. And, you know, we’ll, we’ll see what happens. Hope springs eternal. You know, as you said, Everybody’s, you know, 000 record. And, you know, I’m always optimistic. I just, I’m not gonna make it to opening day this year. It’s it’s in the last week of the General Assembly session. It’s hard to get away from Annapolis, I think, personally, I think should be a civic holiday that like we could all get the day off. But, you know,

Nestor Aparicio  33:06

I don’t want to election days off, then we’ll we’ll work on opening day. I mean, we know they can talk to you. They give you the Oaks day off on Friday. So you know, there is some some civic a precedent on some of these things of shutting down the state for a state holiday opening day. Certainly we qualify. It’s April 6, it’s the Yankees in town. And we actually open on April 30. And Pam, the best part of me knowing this is because I had you on and I know you’re an Oracle head I had to go research is they play like if you look at their schedule, and don’t get too deep into baseball, because I’ll do this with Luke, the end of their schedule. My God, they play like 12 days on the West Coast, come home and play 10 More in August and September. If they’re a contending team. You’re gonna be up late with games from Arizona, San Diego, and I’m Seattle in late August and September,

Pamela Wood  33:51

which is really weird, because West Coast games that is like past my bedtime.

Nestor Aparicio  33:56

The panelists are scheduled now, right? So they’re not in New York 13 times a year and like all that, so there’s all sorts of weirdness and then they’re stay on your side of the diamond. And then there’s we got the clock on you guys. Make sure you’re pitching the ball. There’s all sorts of changes coming to baseball this year. So I’m looking forward to discussing those with you when Wes Moore takes over. Thanks for always making time for us to keep up the great work. And when I saw your name on the stadium headline I said it’s time to reach the pan. So I appreciate you.

Pamela Wood  34:22

Yeah, thanks. That’s good. This

Nestor Aparicio  34:23

was fun. Pamela joins us from the Baltimore banner downtown and there’s palatial offices overlooking the Inner Harbor. I thought I was gonna get down there and see her and see Chris combs see and has all these jeans shock was doing a gig down there on Friday at the Hard Rock and Jean has gotten sick again. So we we give Gina some Dundalk love out to her she caught COVID during the holidays and at the postpone this thing are heartbroken. All my buddies Eddie Lauer and Steve ports and John Allen were her band. They were the house of shock. So we will stay in touch with our friends over one or 2.7 and when they get that going, I’ll come down to buy Pam and everybody at the band. We’re free beer at the Hard Rock for being a great guest on the program. I am Nestor. We are wn S T A and 1570 Towson Baltimore and we never stop talking Baltimore positive

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