Nolan Ryan: "it might not happen"

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It’s one thing when sports business reporters and bloggers and other assorted riffraff suggest that team Greenberg/Ryan’s bid for the Rangers is in trouble, but it’s another thing altogether when Nolan Ryan himself says it.  Here’s ESPN Dallas/Fort Worth’s Richard Durrett:

Team President president Nolan Ryan acknowledged Thursday that his group, which
includes Pittsburgh attorney Chuck Greenberg, might not end up owning
the team. He added that he wasn’t sure what he might do after this
season should Houston businessman Jim Crane, who is trying to get back
in the bidding, ends up owning the team.

“It’s a good possibility that it might not happen,” Ryan said about
owning the team.

Ryan’s pessimism comes as a hearing scheduled for today was canceled and bickering continues over the process by which the team is to be auctioned.  Initially the process seemed pretty slanted towards Greenberg and Ryan — Major League Baseball got veto power over the winner — but now that’s not at all clear, either because the process will be different, baseball is getting cooler with the notion of Crane owning the team or both.

The unmitigated disaster continues. But hey, at least the Rangers themselves are playing some pretty fantastic baseball this year.

Hall of Fame will no longer use Chief Wahoo on Hall of Fame plaques

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Last month, in the wake of his election to the Hall of Fame, Jim Thome made it clear that he wanted to be inducted as a Cleveland Indian but that he did not want to have Chief Wahoo on his plaque.

His reasoning: even though that was the cap he wore for almost all of his time in Cleveland, “because of all the history and everything involved” he did not think it was the right thing to do. The context, of course, was the club’s decision, under pressure from Major League Baseball, to scrap the Wahoo logo due to its racial insensitivity, which it appears Thome agrees with.

Hall plaque decisions are not 100% up to the player, however. Rather, the Hall of Fame, while taking player sentiment into account, makes a judgment about the historical accuracy and representativeness of Hall plaques. This is to prevent a club from entering into a contract with a player to wear its logo on the plaque even if he only played with them for a short time or from a player simply picking his favorite club (or spiting his least-favorite), even if he only spent an inconsequential season or two there. Think Wade Boggs as a Devil Ray or Frank Robinson as, I dunno, a Dodger.

In the case of Chief Wahoo, the Hall has not only granted Thome’s wish, but has decreed that no new plaque will have Wahoo on it going forward:

To be fair, I can’t think of another player who wore Wahoo who would make the Hall of Fame in an Indians cap after Thome. Possibly Manny Ramirez if he ever gets in, though he may have a better claim to a Red Sox cap (debate it in the comments). Albert Belle appears on Veterans Committee ballots, but I’d bet my cats that he’s never getting it in. If younger players like Corey Kluber or Francisco Lindor or someone make it in, they’ll likely have just as much history in a Block-C or whatever the Indians get to replace Wahoo with than anything else, so it’s not really an issue for them.

Still, a nice gesture from the Hall, both to accommodate Thome’s wishes and to acknowledge the inappropriateness of using Chief Wahoo for any purpose going forward.