CORPUS CHRISTI -- With the naming of Reid Ryan as Houston Astros president of business operations on Friday -- and a Letter of Intent agreement for the parent club to purchase the Double-A Corpus Christi Hooks from Ryan-Sanders Baseball later this year -- a long-term future for the club as an Astros affiliate at Whataburger Field is assured.
"This ensures that Double-A baseball stays in Corpus Christi for years to come as an Astros affiliate," Ryan said. "It also ensures the long-term success of the Hooks and is in the best interest of Hooks fans. Over the last 10 years, the Astros-Hooks affiliation has been one of the best in baseball. There's always been great synergy in the relationship. Corpus Christi was an Astros town for 40 years before the advent of the Hooks, and the entire Coastal Bend and South Texas are critical to the success of both clubs."
"On behalf of our entire staff, I want to extend congratulations and heartfelt thanks to Reid for his vision, leadership and friendship," said Hooks president Ken Schrom. "There will be some changes in the offing, but what remains unchanged is our reporting relationship to Reid. I am excited for our fans and delighted for him. The Hooks are his baby; he created this franchise. No one cares more about our people and this ballclub than he does."
Ryan, 41, had been president and CEO of Ryan-Sanders Baseball, which owns and operates the Hooks and Triple-A Round Rock, since 1998. The Express came on-line in 2000 as Houston's Double-A affiliate and five years later moved to Corpus Christi as the Sparkling City welcomed Texas League baseball for the first time since 1959 (Corpus Christi Giants). In 2003, Ryan-Sanders Baseball purchased the Triple-A Edmonton Trappers of the Pacific Coast League and moved the team to Round Rock for the 2005 season. The Express remained an Astros affiliate through 2010 before aligning with the Texas Rangers.
"We have the ability and means to do more for our fans in both Houston and Corpus Christi," Ryan explained. "Whether it's taking Hooks sponsors on trips to Houston or Astros sponsors on junkets to Corpus Christi, or crafting ticket plans involving both the Astros and Hooks, or creating opportunities for fans in both markets to attend special events in the other city, it's all about building and strengthening relationships."
Corpus Christi's current player development agreement with Houston runs through 2016. Ryan also announced Friday that his younger brother, Reese, will succeed him as CEO of Ryan-Sanders Baseball and Ryan-Sanders Entertainment. Reese Ryan, 37, is in his 13th season as CFO of Ryan-Sanders Baseball.