Nolan Ryan used to be the Texas Rangers’ “control person.” Now it’s Ray Davis, who was ratified as such by the owners and Bud Selig today down at the owners’ meetings in Orlando.
Not that that means he really controls the Rangers the way we normally think of that term. It just means that he is the person who is accountable to Major League Baseball for the operation of the Club and for the Club’s compliance with the rules of Baseball. The guy Bud calls on the carpet if things are bad and the guy who gets to appear at celebratory press conferences if things are good.
Sometimes the control person actually runs the team. Sometimes he’s just the face while more anonymous monied interests retain control a la a board of directors or something. The Rangers are like that. The Giants are too. So don’t necessarily get used to stories about “Ray Davis calling the shots in Texas.”
And that’s the case even if people liked to pretend that Nolan Ryan did that when he was the control person before Davis.
This summer’s series between the Yankees and Red Sox in London is, technically, a home series for the Red Sox, with the Yankees serving as the visitors. Pete Abraham reports that Major League Baseball is dispensing with the usual sartorial formalities, however, and will have both teams wearing their home livery: the Red Sox will wear white and the Yankees will wear pinstripes.
It’s marketing more than anything, as you can’t really put your league’s marquee franchise on an international stage and not have it wearing its iconic duds, right?
It’s also pretty harmless if you ask me. Baseball is not like football or basketball in which you have to have contrasting uniforms in order to keep one side from accidentally throwing the ball to the opposition or what have you. And with so many teams wearing solid color alternates now — sometimes both the home and road team are in blue or red jerseys in the same game — it’s not like there hasn’t already been a breakdown in home white/road gray orthodoxy. I prefer the classics, but I lost that battle a long time ago.
So: I say let a thousand colors fly. Heck, let the Yankees wear their pinstripes on the road all the time. Who’ll stop ’em?