N.L. Central News for Wednesday 10/12


Nolan Ryan wants more easy wins for Rangers

Prior to last night’s ALCS game in Detroit, Nolan Ryan said he would welcome the Astros to the American League West. Ryan said having another team from the state of Texas in the division would be “good for baseball.” Ryan went on to say “when they (the Astros) get competitive again it will make a nice rivalry.” Excuse me? I think Ryan’s logic is a little fuzzy here. The Astros and Rangers are already “natural rivals” for interleague play and face each other 12 times a year. Plus, teams that are in close geographic proximity to each other are always in opposite leagues. For example: Oakland & San Francisco, Mets & Yankees, Angels & Dodgers, Kansas City & St. Louis, etc… Ryan still holds a grudge against the Astros organization from his playing days and will do everything he can to knock them down a rung when he gets a chance.

Is the sale of the Astros to Jim Crane nearing approval?

The soap opera continues. Crane had a “productive” meeting with Bud Selig last week. Drayton McLane continues to insist that the sale of the team WILL be approved. Peter Gammons tweeted that the sale should be approved next month with the Astros moving to the American League. I don’t know where Gammons is getting his info. Crane continues to state that he has not been asked to move to the A.L. and would not do so without compensation. The MLB Constitution says that a team cannot be forced to change leagues or divisions. This looks like it will be an ongoing saga for the next month or so.

Theo Epstein reportedly signs with Cubs

Would the last member of Red Sox management to leave Boston please

turn out the lights? Multiple reports say that Red Sox G.M. Theo Epstein has signed a multi-year deal with the Chicago Cubs. Terry Francona, who teamed with Epstein in Beantown to end an 86 year championship drought, was relieved of his managerial duties last week. Will Epstein be able to work his magic and turn the loveable losers of Wrigley into winners?

Jason Castro makes AFL debut

Jason Castro was behind the plate and hit seventh in the lineup for the Salt River Rafters last night

. Castro drew a walk in his first plate appearance and was 0 for 3 for the game. Kody Hinze has been the most productive Astros player in Arizona with seven hits in his first fifteen at-bats. Hinze has hit two homeruns and has also drawn three walks.