A collision in short right field with the bases loaded and two out in the ninth inning of a 4-4 game in Pittsburgh Friday night gave the Houston Astros’ newest executive a glimpse of the circus he had joined only hours earlier.
But like any kid who wants to run away and join the circus, Reid Ryan is ready to accept whatever he encounters in his new job, especially because what happens on the field won’t be his direct responsibility. The Astros’ dreadful daily performance, however, will make Ryan’s job more difficult.
Ryan, son of Nolan, is the Astros’ new president of business operations, although not everyone reported it that way. MLB.com, for example, ran this headline Thursday before Ryan’s appointment was announced:
Source: Reid Ryan to be named president of Astros
This was the headline after Friday’s news conference announcing his appointment:
Reid Ryan introduced as Astros president
Making matters worse, MLB.com identified Ryan in a picture caption as Houston’s “new president of baseball operations.”
However, MLB.com was not alone in exaggerating Ryan’s title. ESPN.com joined in before:
Reid Ryan to take over Astros
Reid Ryan takes over the Astros
Ryan is not taking over the Astros, either as their president or anything else. The headline on the news release announcing his appointment makes that clear in 18-point type:
HOUSTON ASTROS NAME REID RYAN PRESIDENT OF BUSINESS OPERATIONS
In the interest of honesty, however, the release quotes the owner, Jim Crane, in much smaller type, as saying, “We are thrilled to have Reid as President of the Houston Astros,” Maybe Ryan should ask for a raise.
There is a major difference between president and president of business operations. And before anyone says I’m quibbling, ask Reid’s father about titles.