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Monday, March 04, 2013

Galloway: Nolan Ryan could leave Rangers by the end of spring training, sources say

Practiced grill masters can tell how done meat is by pressing with their middle finger.

Yes, there’s been a shift of power in Arlington, which may or may not be the same as a power struggle, but the end result is the same.

Either way, Jon Daniels wins and a guy named Rick George wins, because the ownership group of the Texas Rangers decided that was the direction to go.

And the loser in all this?

Nolan Ryan.

All the above is a surprising development, and a risky development — I also say it’s a stupid development, because why jack with what has worked so well — but all of the above has been thoroughly sourced.

The Rangers owners are now on the edge of a local PR disaster with a large segment of the fandom.

Except Bob Simpson denied on Sunday that all of the above is the way the situation has unfolded, particularly concerning the possible exit of Ryan from the team, an exit that sources say is coming, if it happens, sooner rather than later. Like possibly by the end of spring training.

...Ryan does have three years remaining on his current contract with the Rangers. But is that contract still valid now that a young GM and some guy in the front office have been deemed by these Rangers owners as more important than Nolan Ryan?

That’s a legal question, admittedly. But the power shift in Arlington is a fact. Nolan Ryan has been stripped of his power.

Repoz Posted: March 04, 2013 at 05:31 AM | 10 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: rangers

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   1. JE (Jason Epstein) Posted: March 04, 2013 at 08:04 AM (#4380020)
For a split second I thought I had somehow failed to hear about 66-year old Nolan Ryan's attempted comeback.
   2. John Northey Posted: March 04, 2013 at 08:45 AM (#4380028)
Sure seems dumb unless some nightmares are going on in the back rooms. Here is a team that was #1 or #2 in the west for 5 years running after an 8 year run of 3rd/4th place (in a 4 team division). From 11th in the league in attendance in 2008 to 2nd last year. Of course, the payroll also jumped from $68 mil in 2008 to $124 mil last year and roughly $121 this year (B-R). A TV deal that is worth a crazy amount too. One would think everyone in the front office would be locked in if viewed as important and Ryan was viewed that way outside of the offices. Maybe he was just a 'pretty face' and actually had no real power, and if so then all is fine. If not though...
   3. BDC Posted: March 04, 2013 at 09:19 AM (#4380033)
I'd always assumed that Ryan had more than a symbolic share of the ownership of the club, but the implication in Galloway's piece is that he's just an employee. Daniels has been with the Rangers two years longer than Ryan has, and their steep improvement on the field started when Ryan got here, so I've always credited Ryan with at least some correlation with their success – though Daniels has been GM throughout that success, too, and certainly deserves his share. If some sort of cabal squeezes Ryan out and the team takes a nosedive (which seems likely – to be fair – in any event, even just on the Plexiglas Principle) then that cabal is going to look like a bunch of idiots.
   4. The District Attorney Posted: March 04, 2013 at 09:33 AM (#4380040)
Maybe he was just a 'pretty face'
I think we can rule that one out.

Also, if Ryan leaves without finishing, that'll undo the Rangers' entire philosophy for training young starting pitchers.

Okay, all jokes (perhaps being generous there) aside, I don't find this too shocking. Daniels and Ryan wouldn't seem to have a lot in common in terms of their outlook. If anything, it might be a testament to their professionalism that I at least have not heard prior reports of dissension.

The author is wrong to act like it's ridiculous that the counsel of "a young GM" could be more useful than the counsel of a former great baseball player. Of course it could be, and in fact, I bet it is. But I do think the author is also correct that Ryan leaving would be very bad short-term PR for the Rangers -- and doubly so if, as would seem likely, he goes to the Astros. Of course, ultimately if Ryan truly wants to quit, they can't stop him.

I'd be curious to know more about this Rick George; the article doesn't provide any details.

is that contract still valid now that a young GM and some guy in the front office have been deemed by these Rangers owners as more important than Nolan Ryan?

That’s a legal question, admittedly.
And a remarkably easy one!
   5. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: March 04, 2013 at 11:02 AM (#4380095)
This shouldn't matter that much to the pitchers since Maddux seems like he knows what he's doing. Rick George, COO, is apparently a lifelong executive in various sports and former COO of the PGA Tour. He seems more like a marketing guy than a baseball guy, and I'm not sure why he and Ryan would ever have to work on the same efforts. If he's trying to influence baseball decisions that would be very bad of course. In any case the Rangers seem like an exemplary organization and it would be bad if that were to collapse, but the Red Sox seemed that way a couple of years ago too.
   6. JJ1986 Posted: March 04, 2013 at 11:18 AM (#4380105)
a young GM and some guy in the front office have been deemed by these Rangers owners as more important than Nolan Ryan


Hasn't Daniels always been more important?
   7. Willie Mayspedes Posted: March 04, 2013 at 11:53 AM (#4380133)
That's a legal question, admittedly.


Really? Is that even legal?
   8. Jim Wisinski Posted: March 04, 2013 at 01:30 PM (#4380201)
I'd always assumed that Ryan had more than a symbolic share of the ownership of the club


Me too; in fact, I had thought that when they shuffled things around and the other main guy from the new ownership group (Greenberg?) left it resulted in Ryan being more or less the top guy.
   9. smileyy Posted: March 04, 2013 at 10:50 PM (#4380632)
Maybe Ryan has a clause in his contract that says "We don't have to pay you to be the GM if you're not the GM anymore." Maybe they got him to sign in with a good old Texan aw-shucks-we'll-never-use-that-let's-shake-on-it?
   10. Gamingboy Posted: March 04, 2013 at 11:14 PM (#4380641)
Well, there's always the Astros.

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