Welcome to Crane-cott.info
“He chose the 70 million instead.”
With the sale of the Houston Astros, approved on November 17, 2011, lifelong Astro fans learned that for the price of $70 million, an almost 100-year history of association with the National League had come to an end.
While some in the media rose almost immediately to defend the man as-if some puppet to Allan Selig’s puppeteer, none of them could answer the question of why the man pulling the strings would see to the puppet’s gaining $70 million of compensation.
That Jim Crane had leverage in this episode is undeniable. He himself asserted in the 9/8/11 Houston Chronicle as much when he indicated he would consider a move, but that he would have to be compensated appropriately.
Some defiantly claim that if it were not Jim Crane, then Selig would have merely ensured that whoever was buying the Astros instead of Crane would still have had to move the team to the Artificial League.
They have difficulty, however, explaining how that would have been accomplished, given how the facts line up: i.e., that
(1) MLB by-laws affirm that that authority exclusively lies with each individual owner, not the Commissioner;
(2) any move must be part of the collective bargaining agreement (CBA) between the owners and players; and
(3) the timeline for the CBA was such that if an Astros sale to Crane or anyone else was not executed by the off-season, no move could occur until the next CBA, long after Selig would be retired.
Given all of this, and if one can assume Jim Crane to be a successful business owner capable of perceiving when he has substantive leverage… it simply strains credulity to pretend that he is a victim.
So, let’s be clear:
No one denies that Allan “Bud” Selig has been Astros’ fans own personal Satan over the years. But given the choice of becoming the fans’ savior while buying the team for $680 million or disregarding the fans while accepting a devil of a deal for a $70 million discount… these words might well be the Crane legacy as history records it… indeed…
he chose the 70 million instead.