SBD/July 18, 2013/Franchises

MLB Franchise Notes: Rangers' Next Step Key To Ryan's Future With Team

In Dallas, Gerry Fraley writes the resignation of Rangers President of Business Operations Rick George to become Univ. of Colorado AD “gives ownership the opportunity to restore the significance" of CEO Nolan Ryan. The next step will “have no impact on the baseball department and the product on the field but will affect Ryan’s long-term future with the club.” An engaged Ryan is “invested in the organization and unlikely to even consider departing.” If ownership were to use a headhunter to find George’s successor, that would "suggest reservations about the front-office holdovers.” In that scenario, Ryan “would be further marginalized” (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 7/18).

TRIBAL TICKETS: In Cleveland, Kevin Kleps notes the Indians are in their second season using dynamic ticket pricing, but it has “yet to translate into bigger crowds at Progressive Field.” The Indians "only are opening certain upper reserve sections of Progressive Field as demand dictates, thus concentrating smaller crowds in the higher-priced seats of the ballpark's lower levels.” Senior Dir of Communications Curtis Danburg said, “People are used to walking up and asking for the cheapest tickets. They're shocked to see the upper reserve section is $21 because it used to be $9. Part of our education (of fans) is it's abnormal that the price was $9 in the first place. All of our peers are charging $24 and $27” (CRAIN’S CLEVELAND BUSINESS, 7/15 issue).

MORE TO DO: On Long Island, David Lennon notes “no one seems to know what the future holds” for Mets GM Sandy Alderson or the team “just yet.” He is “getting closer to achieving some of the goals he laid out,” but the process “probably has taken longer than Alderson initially hoped.” Of Alderson’s three elements, he has “been an unqualified success at only one: clearing payroll” (NEWSDAY, 7/18).

TAXING PLAN: In L.A., Welsh & Linthicum noted the Dodgers are “dropping a deal” with the L.A. Fire Department to “provide emergency medical service at the team's home games.” The arrangement, which started in April, “called for three ambulances staffed by off-duty firefighters to be stationed at every game.” It came “under fire last week when Fire Department officials acknowledged that the plan would cost taxpayers money, and that on more than a dozen occasions the department has pulled on-duty firefighters away from their postings in stations across the city to staff the games.” Former Dodgers PR Dir Steve Brener said that the team would “seek bids from private ambulance companies” (LATIMES.com, 7/15).
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