Continued from page 1

DeWitt held a press conference the day after he and Angelos purchased the team and said he would be the franchise’s “baseball man” when it would come time to sign free agents and make trades. He said he looked forward to a “more active role” in baseball than his minority ownership in Texas. Lucchino believed he was part of that more active role as well.

But both men found out Angelos had other ideas and had every intention of being the “active” owner. Lucchino got out quickly and DeWitt sold his share in the team within a year.

They became partners again in a bid to buy the Pittsburgh Pirates, but Lucchino dropped out of that venture to join John Moores in his deal to purchase the San Diego Padres from television executive Tom Werner (now a partner with Lucchino in the Red Sox ownership). Dewitt got the chance to own his hometown team when he purchased the Cardinals in 1996.

Since then, both men have made their respective franchises among the most successful in baseball. Lucchino, the mastermind behind Camden Yards and who got the new ballpark in San Diego built, has saved Fenway Park through creative refurbishing. DeWitt oversaw the development of a new Busch Stadium in St. Louis.

The Red Sox, without a World Series championship since 1918, have won two with Lucchino in 2004 and 2007, while DeWitt’s Cardinals have also won two, in 2006 and 2011.

The Orioles have been a disaster under Angelos, just climbing out of 15 straight losing seasons in the past two years under the direction of manager Buck Showalter and general manager Dan Duquette.

The last time the two former partners met, Lucchino’s team won. I asked DeWitt if he had any thoughts about what might have been in in Baltimore.

“In hindsight, I’m glad that Baltimore didn’t work out,” he told me.

He is not likely the first person to have said that.

Thom Loverro is co-host of “The Sports Fix,” noon to 2 p.m. daily on ESPN 980 radio and