Houston, TX (Sports Network) - Hall of Fame pitcher Nolan Ryan has come to terms on a five-year personal services agreement with the Houston Astros.
It was earlier this month that Ryan decided not to sign a new personal services contract with the Texas Rangers. He will serve in a variety of roles in his new job with the Astros, including assisting the club's major league baseball operations staff with its major and minor league player development programs. He will also help out with the Astros' pitching development program, the amateur draft, scouting and minor league team operations and evaluations. Additionally, Ryan will spend time with the team at spring training, giving instruction to players and staff and evaluating major and minor league talent.
"This is truly a great day for the Houston Astros," said team owner Drayton McLane. "To bring one of the best pitchers and people ever to play the game of baseball back home to our organization means a great deal to all of us here and to all of our fans. Nolan has been a champion and has always made a difference in the community, and his values and actions fit perfectly with what we are trying to accomplish here."
Ryan, who pitched for the Astros from 1980-88, went into the Hall of Fame in 1999 as a Ranger, despite spending only five years of his career with Texas. With Ryan's help, the Astros won their first-ever division title in 1980. He also owns the major league record with seven career no-hitters, six of which came in the American League.
"I'm excited about it," Ryan said of his new opportunity. "It's going to be a fun year and it's an organization that obviously has been very important and meaningful in my life."
The 57-year-old Ryan, who went 324-292 with a 3.19 ERA over his 27-year career, is the owner of the Astros' Double-A franchise in Round Rock, Texas. He holds the record for most career major league strikeouts with 5,714. Now, Ryan will join an organization that currently has the No. 1 pitcher all-time in American League strikeouts in Roger Clemens, who has 4,099. Clemens and friend Andy Pettitte, both of whom played for the Yankees last year, signed contracts with the Astros in the offseason to play in their hometown.
"I'm looking forward to working with the Astros," Ryan said. "It is a very exciting time to be associated with them."