SBD/January 10, 2014/Franchises

Astros' Reid Ryan Addresses Challenges Of First Full Year, Enters '14 With Full Plate

The '14 MLB season will mark Astros President of Business Operations Reid Ryan's "first full season running the show," and "the juggling act for Ryan and his staff is ongoing," according to Evan Drellich of the HOUSTON CHRONICLE. Ryan said, "This organization basically has just been radically changed. So, in a lot of ways, we're still setting the new course of where we want to go." Drellich noted Ryan has "devoted a lot of time to information gathering, be it from fans, sponsors, community leaders -- even the media." The "elephant in the room is whether fans can watch Astros games at home as Comcast SportsNet Houston’s bankruptcy case unfolds." Ryan said, "I don't know what the carriage will be. ... Our goal is to get maximum carriage in our five-state region for everybody." Meanwhile, Ryan said that Astros season-ticket sales "are down" 1.5% from last year. But he "was not discouraged" by the figures, as the team's 51-111 likely "accounted for" the decrease. As for other issues on Ryan's plate, Drellich wrote, "Even when Minute Maid Park's roof can be open brings a level of intricacy." MLB rules governing when teams can open retractable roofs "need to be ironed out," and some "clarity could come next week." Ryan said that he is "looking into keeping the roof open" in a "response to fan demand." Ryan also discussed former MLBer Craig Biggio not getting elected to the Baseball HOF this week. The Astros "were planning promotions" around the induction announcement for Biggio, who played his entire 20-year MLB career with the team. Ryan: "We had had a whole kind of year planned around celebrating that" (CHRON.com, 1/9).
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