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A Change Is Gonna Come? Crane, The AL And Timing

Let's get one thing straight. I'm tired of writing about Jim Crane. I'm tired of this sale. I'm tired of the move to the American League.

It's the same news, over and over again.

Until it isn't. The latest is that Drayton McLane's sale of the Astros to Jim Crane will be approved at the November 15th owner's meetings and that Crane is working on a deal that will compensate him with $50 million to move the Astros to the American League.

Which is all fine and newsworthy, but it was telegraphed weeks ago when Crane met with the Houston Chronicle editorial board. That's when Crane trotted out the idea that the American League move would be possible if he was compensated.

Until that point, the question was about Crane's viability because of his background, questions on his financing holding up, the war profiteering mess and all the other issues that came up this summer. We've written about all of it as we wait with baited breath for Crane to finally take command of this team.

All the while, we speculated that the owners were more focused on the McCourt divorce mess than the Crane approval process, that his background issues weren't an issue as much as the owners were distracted. Oh, and they decided they wanted the Astros to move if the sale went through.

Funny how despite protests to the contrary, once the McCourt mess wrapped up this week, suddenly the Crane deal starts coming out. This entire summer, Crane and MLB engaged in a slow dance negotiating through the press, never waivering from their marching orders until that meeting Crane had with the Chronicle. That's when things started moving in a positive direction. The meeting with Selig happened. A deal was reached and now, the Astros just might have an owner.

While we waited, the Red Sox lost GM Theo Epstein to the Cubs, Andrew Friedman may be headed to Arte Moreno's deep pockets in Los Angeles or Anaheim and the Texas Rangers made the World Series. Crane won't be stepping into a great situation, but I'll be glad when he's officially in charge in a month.

Maybe once he's on board, I'll have something to write about again...