New School’s Shan Shariff spoke with someone closely connected to the Rangers on Monday night and gathered some new info on the power struggle between Nolan Ryan and Jon Daniels.
Here’s exactly what he was told — straight from the New School notepad:
* Jon Daniels isn’t forcing Nolan out, but he’s digging the holes. Remember the end of Casino when Joe Pesci had a hole in the desert waiting for him? If Ryan leaves, JD is breaking out the shovel for all of “Nolan’s Guys.”
Here are some of the names on JD’s hit list:
– Jackie Moore (bench coach)
– Tim Purpura (old Astros GM)
– Harry Spilman (Minor league hitting coordinator)
* There is no doubt that Jon Daniels deserves credit for the baseball decisions in Arlington, but he isn’t capable of recruiting the quality of baseball people that Nolan has assembled. In other words, Mike Maddux works in Arlington because of The Godfather, not the wiz kid.
* Jon Daniels is NOT respected in the Rangers’ clubhouse. Players know he doesn’t have any mitts on the wall. Although it has produced success, JD’s analytical approach still doesn’t compare to Nolan’s Hall of Fame resume. Thad Levine is actually the guy that draws respect from players and coaches and has been called on to negotiate at least one contract that Daniels chose to ignore.
* Part of the reason for the JD disrespect is the DAILY, not weekly or monthly, but DAILY battles JD had with Ron Washington over the 2012 lineup. The managers office is very close to the locker room. I was told players consistently heard the arguments and were turned off by JD’s consistent interference and challenging of Wash. Yes, picture Billy Beane vs Art Howe in Moneyball.
* Here’s a perfect example how JD’s stats created eye rolls from the Rangers’ baseball people. Before the 2012 season, Rangers coaches BEGGED Daniels not to insert Neftali Feliz into the starting rotation. Work ethic, stamina and dedication were some of the many reasons given to JD as to why Nefti wasn’t capable of throwing 100 pitches every 5th day. JD didn’t listen, and Feliz didn’t last. Now I’m told Nefti looks “pregnant” in Surprise.
* The Rangers’ silence on Monday speaks volumes about this story. If the rumors weren’t true, all Nolan had to do was dismiss them. A press conference, media release, phone interview…SOMETHING to make the PR nightmare disappear. Obviously, it didn’t happen.
* Jon Daniels doesn’t miss an opportunity to remind ownership of his accomplishments, and he makes sure Nolan isn’t around to hear the bragging. JD isn’t pushing Nolan off the Ranger ledge, but he’s waiting with his shovel.
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