What your view of sports and life would be if you had too many concussions
Yeah, I know it isn’t official yet. But Jim Crane is set to become the new owner of the Houston Astros; hell, someday we might even officially announce it.
Houston businessman Jim Crane and current owner Drayton McLane agreed to a $680 million sale in May. McLane said at the time he expected the deal to gain league approval by mid-July. However, Osama Bud Selig and the geniuses who run Major League Baseball have seen fit to keep Crane waiting in the lobby flipping through old magazines.
The prevailing attitude is the deal won’t be approved until the MLB owners meetings on August 18. Naturally, that could put a pinch on any deals the Astros might want to make in advance of the upcoming non-waiver trading deadline, July 31.
However, Crane and his people have been treated like a President-Elect; they have been given access to documents and have been consulted on personnel decisions including the release of veteran Bill Hall and the firing of pitching coach Brad Arnsberg. The expectation is they will continue to to be involved in any trade decisions even if the sale has not yet been approved.
This begs a million dollar question: If you are allowing Crane and his people a seat at the Astros’ decision-making table, it seems a safe assumption the sale is going to be approved. So why is Crane being left to idle in Osama Bud Selig’s purgatory?
The problem is twofold. First, Jim Crane is largely unknown. Up or down, McLane is known in Houston as “Uncle Drayton.” That sort of familiarity engenders respect or breeds contempt, which leaves Crane in an awkwardly neutral position.
That’s why here at Dubsism have dug up some facts which both will educate baseball fans about this new probable owner and doom his candidacy; it seems Selig may be holding this guy up because he isn’t the usual parasite who has been ushered into ownership under Osama Bud Selig and the rest of the MLB Taliban.
1) Jim Crane is no carpet-bagger
Unlike Frank McCourt, Jeffery Loria, and many other owners who don’t live in the cities in which they own franchises, Jim Crane has lived in Houston for nearly three decades, and has built several monstrous piles of cash there.
2) Jim Crane is a self-made man
Crane arrive in Houston from Kansas City in 1982 towing his whole life in a rented U-Haul trailer.
3) Jim Crane know how to build an organization
Crane’s first company was called Eagle Global Logistics. At it’s inception, it consisted of one employee and one truck. When Crane sold it for $300 million, it was a major player in the world of international freight with 11,000 employees and a client list including Nike, 3M, and Target.
4) Jim Crane has a loyal inner circle of friends
When you don’t know about a man’s character, look at his friends. Crane has a small circle of close friends who didn’t take the opportunity to get some cheap publicity for themselves by dropping the dime on Crane when the media was itching to get the scoop on the Astros’ new owner.
5) Crane is a baseball guy
While he was not a major-leaguer, Crane was a Division II baseball star at the University of Central Missouri in the 1970s. He was an honorable mention Division II All-American as a pitcher, notching a 21-8 record with a 2.42 ERA for UCM.
6) Crane is still a “sports” guy
Tons of high-level executives in this country can play some serious small-ball, but Crane is regarded as the best golfing CEO in the country. You can buy a bag full of high-tech sticks, you can buy memberships at the best country clubs, but you can’t buy a swing.
If those six facts don’t tell you this guy is no McCourt or Wilpon, don’t forget this guy was in a partnership with the suddenly-popular Mark Cuban on two occasions, once to buy the Chicago Cubs and once to buy the Texas Rangers. Of course, his association with Cuban may be what sticks under Osama Bud Selig’s turban, but the baseball Taliban is running out of guys who can bail out the mess they’ve created.