Despite how short and seemingly ill-fated Chuck Greenberg's involvement in Major League Baseball was, the Myrtle Beach Pelicans principal owner said he's still thankful for the experience.
Greenberg was the figurehead of an investor group that purchased the Texas Rangers in August by outbidding Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban at auction following several months of negotiations with former owner Tom Hicks.
The first couple months of ownership couldn't have gone any better. The Rangers won a pair of playoff series and beat the New York Yankees to reach the World Series for the first time in franchise history, and the fan base was galvanized.
But just seven months after the purchase, Greenberg resigned as chief executive officer and managing partner of the Rangers, and he will no longer have any ownership interest in the team.
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Discord between Greenberg and the team's primary investors and baseball operations staff, including team president Nolan Ryan, reportedly led to Greenberg's sudden departure from the franchise.
"I'm not soured by it at all," said Greenberg, speaking to the media Tuesday for the first time since his split from the Rangers was announced on March 11. "It was a heck of an experience - the circumstances and processes of acquiring the team, the playoff run, the progress we made off the field during the offseason. It was very fulfilling and I look back with a lot of great memories of it.
"I wish the Rangers organization nothing but the best ... and I'll be rooting for them."
As Greenberg watched the Rangers prepare for Tuesday night's exhibition game against Coastal Carolina at BB&T Coastal Field - a game he helped arrange - he had no interest in rehashing the events that led to his departure.
"The whole subject of how, when and who, I don't think there's any value in getting into it," he said. "What's done is done. I'm looking forward to whatever the future brings for me."
Greenberg said a lot of people in and out of the Rangers organization have expressed appreciation for his efforts for the club, and he chatted at length on the field with Rangers personnel Tuesday, including general manager Jon Daniels.
"I've heard from quite a few people within the organization over the last two or three weeks and I've really appreciated hearing from them and the kind words they had to say," Greenberg said. "And the response and support throughout the [Dallas-Fort Worth] community has been wonderful. I've heard from more people than I can count. It's comforting and I truly appreciate the kind things people have had to say."
Bob Simpson, one of the Rangers' ownership group's largest investors, said on March 11 that Greenberg turned down the opportunity for another position in the organization, one "not in the full role that he was enjoying."
Greenberg wouldn't say if his separation from the team is complete or not, but a complete divesting from the team will be the end result, he said.
Greenberg said he's not actively exploring any more opportunities in major league baseball, but he's not ruling it out in the future, either.
He is the principal owner of both the Pelicans and Class A short-season State College (Pa.) Spikes, and his Greenberg Sports Group management and consulting company manages both teams. It also consults for other minor league franchises and is in the early stages of consulting for college athletic departments.
As an attorney in Pittsburgh, Greenberg, who brought in former NFL stars Jerome Bettis and Eddie George to be partners in the Pelicans, represented groups that purchased the NHL's Pittsburgh Penguins and Florida Panthers, but he's no longer practicing law. He intends to retain and live in homes in both Pittsburgh and Westlake, Texas.
"I have no particular plans for the future. There's nothing I'm intending to pursue and nothing I'm ruling out," said Greenberg, who has a wife of nearly 27 years, Jenny, and three adult sons.
"Right now I'm just enjoying every day, having a chance to slow down after running really hard for many, many years. ... I'm just looking forward to enjoying my family and some relaxation and enjoying life."
As an owner of the Rangers, Greenberg helped negotiate the switch of Pelicans' Major League parent clubs from the Atlanta Braves to the Rangers, and the organizations signed a four-year player development contract that begins this season. He said he hasn't lamented the decision.
"I haven't looked back to ponder the what-ifs," Greenberg said. "We're looking forward to the future and we're going to embrace it. The Braves are a wonderful first-class organization, the Rangers are as well. The Rangers are a great player development organization."
Greenberg said he has no worries about the Pelicans' future affiliations, even if in four years the Rangers decide they want to move their Advanced Class A affiliate. The Pelicans are guaranteed a parent club because the number of major league and minor league affiliated clubs works out evenly, and Greenberg believes the Pelicans will have options based on their location, facility and placement in the Carolina League.
"I've been in involved in minor league baseball long enough to know that it comes down to the quality of the facility, quality of the community and quality of the operation, and we're very fortunate that we're at the top of the charts in all three respects," he said. "So this will continue to be a franchise major league organizations line up to affiliate with."
Daniels said he doesn't expect Greenberg's departure from the Rangers to have any impact on the relationship between the Rangers and Pelicans. Though Ryan is a partner in the team's new Triple-A team in Round Rock, Texas, the Rangers organization doesn't own any of its six minor league teams.
"We've got excellent relationships with our affiliates whether it's with Hickory [N.C.], Frisco [Texas] or Spokane [Wash.]," Daniels said. "From my perspective it shouldn't impact us at all. The Myrtle Beach staff has been great. It should be hopefully a long, productive relationship."