Friday, October 22, 2010

A Texas Sized Celebration! The Curse of Tom Hicks Lifted!

After holding the Texas Rangers hostage for 12 seasons, Tom Hicks finally turned the keys over to the Chuck Greenburg/Nolan Ryan group earlier this summer.  During Hicks reign, he ran the team with the kind of reckless abandon that could only make Dan Snyder proud.  Here are some of the highlights of the Hicks era:
  • Foolishly outbidding himself in the Alex Rodriguez sweepstakes.  A-Rod signed for 10 years/$252M, which was $63M more than the second richest deal.  A-Rod played in three seasons before being traded to the Yankees prior to the 2004 season.
  • Signed Chan Ho Park for 5 years/$65M, and received 3.6 wins above replacement in three and a half season.  Money well spent...
  • Missed playoffs every season during the "aught" decade.  This includes eight losing seasons, and five in the AL West cellar.  This is despite having one of baseball's larger payrolls--particularly during the first half of the decade.
  • Forced the team into a long, contentious bankruptcy proceedings that nearly kept the Rangers from acquiring Cliff Lee at this year's July 31st trading deadline.  
To say Hicks's reign was anything short of a disaster, is an understatement.  It was awful.  That's all ancient history.  The "curse" is over.  There's a new ownership group in place, and the franchise is going to the World Series for the first time in it's history.  I know it's a coincidence, but I can't help but feel this is all happening because Tom Hicks is out of the picture.  A weight seems to have been lifted.

The Rangers have played beautifully throughout the playoffs.  They out-hit, out-pitched, out-ran, and out-defended the heavily favored Yankees.  If not for some bullpen mismanagement in Game 1, the Rangers could've swept the Yanks in four games.  I extend my congratulations to the new American League Champions.  Additionally, I'd like to congratulate ALCS MVP, Josh Hamilton, who has overcome a very public drug and alcohol addiction, and come out on the other side clean, sober, and successful.  He is an outstanding role model for people attempting to either overcome addiction, or achieve seemingly unobtainable goals. 

Good luck to the Rangers in the World Series.  It's going to be a tough road, no matter if they face the Giants or the Phillies.

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