I have yet to fully express my thoughts regarding the matter of Nolan Ryan’s recent transgressions. This is part in due to my preference to sit back, observe and then analyze information, especially of this magnitude. And as with any big story, there have been many ambiguous reports, particularly from the Fort-Worth Star-Telegram’s Randy Galloway, who adamantly defends Nolan Ryan’s pride in light of the news of Jon Daniels’ promotion and simultaneously paints a picture that seems to show the formation of two opposing camps within the Rangers’ front office: That of GM Jon Daniels, and of CEO Nolan Ryan.
Under normal circumstances, I would wait for more definitive news to emerge in relation to matters like this one, as observations are just that, observations. But Nolan Ryan’s silence has broken my own silence on this issue.
In an excellent observational article on BBTiA by Mike Hindman, it is made rather clear that Jon Daniels is not the harsh and power-hungry brainiac that Galloway portrays him as, rather, Jon Daniels is depicted as a motivational leader whose purpose is to build an entirely cooperative organization in every facet of the game with a major dependence on the scouting department. So far, Jon Daniels has achieved his mission, but this victory seems to have been defeated.
In a a recent Galloway piece, which has been “thoroughly sourced”, I found one quote in particular from Rangers co-owner, Bob Simpson rather interesting:
“Nolan is a treasure for us. His wisdom and his counsel are invaluable. And if anyone in his camp has taken these latest moves the wrong way, then that needs to be addressed.”
I find this interesting for one sole reason. The fact that Bob Simpson himself has acknowledged the existence of Nolan Ryan’s “camp”. This of course seems to go against any and everything that Jon Daniels has established. So there is evidently some level of conflict within the Rangers’ front office, be it for whatever reason or to whatever extent, it still exists.
Personally, I’ve always viewed Nolan Ryan within the light of what he brings to the team and also appreciated the legitimacy he brought to the Texas Rangers franchise in terms of him being the essential face of the organization. But that is where the line is drawn. Objectively, Nolan Ryan does not bring very much to the organization. Jon Daniels and the scouting department are the anchors of the organization, and continue to be so. So if Nolan Ryan was to leave the organization tomorrow, the front office would carry on with its business as it has with him.
Evidently, as indicated by anonymous sources to Galloway, Ryan’s camp is upset with the lack of gratification for what Nolan Ryan has done for the Texas Rangers. Objectively, this isn’t much of an issue, as the team would carry on just fine with or without the Texas icon. Subjectively, this is a PR disaster.
And where there is smoke, there is fire. But why is there even a fire on the first place?
The silence on behalf of Nolan Ryan speaks volumes. The fact that Nolan Ryan has yet to disquiet any and all flames stemming from his end of the fiasco is alarming. Remember, this wasn’t an issue until members of Ryan’s “camp” leaked information of Ryan’s discontent with the direction of the front office. So why would Ryan’s “camp” do such a thing?
To the casual fan, Nolan Ryan is larger than life. He is a Texas icon. He is the man behind the resurgence of the Texas Rangers. All of these things are true, except for the last part of course. Nolan Ryan has the heart of the majority of the fans and is playing the victim when in fact he himself is the perpetrator of the fiasco.
In clear defiance of Jon Daniels’ ideals, Nolan Ryan has essentially manipulated the fans through his “camp” leaking information of Ryan’s discontent with Jon Daniels’ promotion and of the lack of appreciation for what Nolan brings to the franchise, then followed by Ryan’s untimely and seemingly unassuming silence.
It was recently made clear that Nolan Ryan will be remaining with the Rangers, and will continue to meet with the owners, but regardless of this development, a line has been drawn in the sand, and this is all because of Nolan Ryan’s arrogance as to his purpose within the organization. And what about Ryan’s “camp”? What about Jon Daniels’ allegiance to synergy?
Clearly, Rangers owners Bob Simpson and Ray Davis have entrusted the direction and central decision making of the organization to Jon Daniels, and deservedly so. So with the owners’ desire to have Nolan Ryan staying with the franchise, it isn’t so much an issue as to what he brings to the table, but to avoid the potential PR disaster and to appease his apparent “camp”. But with a clear line drawn within the front office, something will inevitably break again, and hopefully it will end with the fans finally seeing Nolan Ryan’s act of hubris.