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“Ultimately, my dream is to help shape a major league baseball organization from top to bottom,” Ripken said. “If that opportunity ever presents itself, it’s one I’ll look long and hard at.”

But there are only two realistic choices — the Nationals and the Orioles — available for Ripken unless he’s willing to leave the Baltimore-Washington area, which is unlikely, given his family and business ties here.

There was much speculation that Ripken would indeed wind up part of an ownership group in Washington. He did have talks with several of the groups seeking to buy the team, including the current owners, the Lerner family. But those discussions never translated into a place in the current Nationals ownership.

The obvious choice for Ripken would be the Orioles.

A group of investors reportedly would back Ripken in purchasing the Orioles, but the chances of that happening are slim: It is unlikely Peter Angelos will sell the team, and his two sons, John and Louis, have become more prominent again in the organization. Any sale became more complicated with the creation of the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network. Does Angelos sell just the Orioles and keep the network? Not likely. Is it a package deal? Then it may be about a $700 million transaction.

If Ripken somehow does manage to own the Orioles and turn around what is one of the worst-managed organizations in professional sports, they very well might have to open up a new wing for Ripken in Cooperstown and hold another induction ceremony.

Fixing the Orioles would be a Hall of Fame achievement in the business of baseball.