A Los Angeles Times story on Friday confirmed what has long been rumored: The Los Angeles Dodgers and the Westfield Group wanted to bring a minor league baseball team to the San Fernando Valley only to have that notion quashed by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
Sports reporter Bill Shaikin wrote about how Westfield and the Dodgers were looking at coming to Woodland Hills with a Single A team to play in a 7,000-seat stadium built to replace Westfield’s Promenade shopping center at Oxnard Street and Topanga Canyon Boulevard.
Shaikin interviewed Peter Guber, a part owner of the Dodgers, who said the team liked the idea, as did Westfield, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and Minor League and Major League baseball representatives.
“There was nobody that did not like it,” Shaikin quoted Guber, “except for Arte Moreno.”
Moreno is the owner of the Angels. He declined to discuss the issue.
Baseball rules allow an in-market major league team to veto plans for any minor league team to move in. Because the Los Angeles area is considered one baseball market, the Angels would have to give the okay for the Dodgers to field a minor league team, and the Dodgers would have to approve the same for the Angels.
Then-Angels spokesman Tim Mead told Shaikin the team would give permission if the Dodgers would do the same if the Angels ever wanted to move a minor league team into the shared territory. The Dodgers said no to that idea, Shaikin wrote.
Westfield is now known as Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield SE after having been acquired by the French Unibail-Rodamco SE.
The Single A California League has eight franchises affiliated with the major league teams in the western U.S.: five in California and one each in Seattle, Colorado and Arizona.
The Dodgers affiliate in the California League is the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes, while the Angels affiliate is the Inland Empire 66ers, which plays in San Bernardino.
Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield is moving ahead with redeveloping the Promenade property with a mixed-use live/work/play community that will include a 15,000-seat stadium, two hotels, an office tower, restaurant and retail space and apartments. No tenant has been identified for the stadium.