Ryan wouldn’t stay with Rangers in lesser role
Texas Rangers president Nolan Ryan says he is unsure when or how
the pending sale of the team will be resolved – a decision that
will determine if he stays with the organization.
“I have no way of knowing,” Ryan said Friday. “We’ll just
have to wait and see.”
Ryan has partnered with Pittsburgh attorney Chuck Greenberg and
a group of mainly local investors in a bid to buy the team.
Another finalist is former sports agent Dennis Gilbert, who
likely would be involved in running daily operations if his group
gets the Rangers. Ryan said at the winter meetings this week that
he wouldn’t stay and work with Gilbert under such a scenario.
Ryan said he has since spoken with Gilbert, but the Hall of Fame
pitcher indicated that his position hasn’t changed.
“I don’t anticipate being here and taking a lesser role because
I want to kind of set the direction of the organization,” said
Ryan, though he added it was too hard to predict what might
Tom Hicks hired Ryan as team president in February 2008, and put
him in charge of running the team on a daily basis.
Gilbert and Greenberg were thought to be the only finalists
heading into an anticipated deadline Tuesday for Hicks to inform
Major League Baseball which bid he planned to accept.
Ryan indicated Friday, however, that a group other than Gilbert
and Greenberg had resubmitted a revised proposal. The only other
known proposal to buy the team was made by a group headed by
Houston businessman Jim Crane, who in the past had attempted to
purchase the Astros.
Hicks, who previously had been working to put together a group
in an effort to maintain ownership of the team, said in an e-mail
Friday that he wasn’t commenting on the process.
Ryan also said he was unsure if the Tuesday deadline was
“I think it’s still very much in Tom’s hands, what he’d like to
do and be able to do,” Ryan said.
Greenberg owns two minor league baseball teams, and recently
sold a third. He previously represented buyers for two NHL teams,
Pittsburgh in 1999 and Florida in 2001.
Ryan, a principal owner of a group that owns and operates two
minor league teams that his sons help run, said common background
helped his decision to partner with Greenberg.
“Chuck and I spent more time together than anybody else and I
felt like that the role he wants to play with the local interest
here, I felt like it was just a better matchup for me,” Ryan
Gilbert is a special adviser for the Chicago White Sox who still
runs his insurance company in California. He is a former minor
league player who became successful in insurance, writing policies
for some entertainers and athletes.
As a sports agent, his clients included George Brett, Barry
Bonds, Mike Piazza and Curt Schilling.