SBD/March 11, 2011/Franchises

Chuck Greenberg Steps Down As CEO Of Rangers After Seven Months

Greenberg gained control of the Rangers just seven months ago
The MLB Rangers Friday morning announced that Managing General Partner & CEO Chuck Greenberg is leaving the organization. Team President Nolan Ryan will add the title of CEO and oversee all business and baseball operations, reporting directly to the BOD (Rangers). In Dallas, Evan Grant cites a source as saying that Greenberg "left the Rangers’ spring training facility in Arizona abruptly on Saturday during a weekend that was supposed to be full of activities for the managing partnership." He was "not at a club party" he and Ryan "were supposed to host on Sunday." Greenberg's surprising departure "comes just shy of the seven-month mark of MLB’s unanimously approving" Greenberg, Nolan Ryan and "more than a dozen others to purchase the club after a courthouse auction pushed the sale price to more than $590 million" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 3/11). In Ft. Worth, Jeff Wilson reports "no one reason was given" for Greenberg's exit, but his "method of operations could have created disagreements within the organization," including with Ryan, and "among the ownership group and even Major League Baseball" (FT. WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM, 3/11). SI's Jon Heyman on his Twitter feed wrote, "Chuck greenberg managed to upset a lot of people as managing partner but undoing came after he upset nolan ryan" (TWITTER.com, 3/11).

WHAT WENT WRONG? In Dallas, Evan Grant notes from the "moment he gained control of the Rangers seven months ago, Chuck Greenberg fancied himself as an aggressive owner determined to reshape the club, its operations and its brand in his vision." But he "never owned the team, only a small percentage of it." It appears that "somewhere during the 16-month purchase process or during the seven months since the club was officially transferred from Tom Hicks to the coalition of owners Greenberg put together, he lost sight of the fact" that he was CEO & Managing General Partner. Grant: "What is starting to emerge is a picture of a man who was perhaps seduced by the challenge of landing the team and then obsessed with running it, even when he didn't have ultimate or unilateral authority to do so" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 3/11). ESPN’s Buster Olney writes, “This is a stunner, although folks within other organizations did wonder if there would inevitably be clashes because of how many Texas executives spoke loudly for the organization -- general manager Jon Daniels (naturally), President Nolan Ryan, and Greenberg” (ESPN.com, 3/11).
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