Judge: Just ‘L.A.’ Is OK

Times Staff Writer

In a decision that could persuade the city of Anaheim to revive its litigation against the Angels, a judge ruled Friday the team can market itself as the Los Angeles Angels, with no mention of Anaheim.

“If they want to put Los Angeles Angels on a T-shirt, they can,” Orange County Superior Court Judge Peter Polos said.

The team does not plan to do so and intends to continue to promote itself as the Angels, with no city attached, spokesman Tim Mead said. In January, owner Arte Moreno said he would not sell “Los Angeles” merchandise at the ballpark and would not produce any such items but said goods produced by Major League Baseball could call the team by any name.

In February, a jury found the team had not broken its stadium lease by changing its name to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. On Friday, Polos denied Anaheim’s request for specific language accompanying the verdict that would forbid the team from selling itself as the Los Angeles Angels. The jury decided the Angels “can market the team any way they want,” Polos said.


Anaheim co-counsel Mike Rubin said he believes the City Council is more likely to appeal the verdict, given what he called this “judicial sanction” for the Angels to drop the Anaheim name everywhere but formal documents. The deadline for the city to appeal has been delayed to June 11.


After The Times reported this week that a Los Angeles man is suing the Angels for discrimination because Mother’s Day tote bags were given to women only, the double-A Altoona (Pa.) Curve announced a promotion of its own: “Salute to Frivolous Lawsuit Night,” set for July 2.

The Curve said men would get pink tote bags, women would get lukewarm coffee “so they will not burn themselves” and kids would get a beach ball “with a warning not to ingest it.”

“We realize that these giveaways as part of our Salute to Frivolous Lawsuit Night are fairly stupid and serve no real purpose,” Curve General Manager Todd Parnell said Friday. “But, if our fans don’t like them, then they can sue us.”


Good friends and former teammates John Lackey and Jarrod Washburn face each other tonight. “The trash talk has begun,” Lackey said. The two plan to have lunch today.... Kevin Gregg would have started Monday, but the Angels are off, so they’ll skip his turn. Lackey, Gregg and Jeff Weaver, the scheduled starters for next weekend’s series at Dodger Stadium, took batting practice Friday.... Bartolo Colon (sore right shoulder) threw from a mound for the first time since the Angels put him on the disabled list April 19. The Angels are hopeful he can start a minor league rehabilitation assignment next week and rejoin the rotation by month’s end.... Scot Shields is scheduled to consult today with Craig Milhouse, the Angels’ team physician, about the chest pains that bothered him last week. Doctors in Toronto diagnosed acid reflux and prescribed medication. “He got a pepperoni pizza stuck in there for a couple weeks,” Manager Mike Scioscia said.