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November 17, 2011

Astros to join Rangers in AL West in 2013

The sale of the Houston Astros was approved unanimously by baseball's 30 club owners this morning in Milwaukee, and Commissioner Bud Selig confirmed that the Astros will join the American League West beginning in 2013.

The swap gives each league 15 teams and will result in daily interleague play. Crane, who with Mark Cuban attempted to buy the Rangers in the August 2010 courthouse auction, isn't looking forward to the travel or the potential negative effect the move could have on TV ratings, but he said that the potential rivalry with the Rangers could be a boon for both teams.

First, though, the Astros have to get more competitive. They lost 106 games last season, and Crane acknolwedged that Houston is rebuidling.

"We've got some work to do," said Crane, who likes the Rangers' model of success. "You can easily see our minor-league system is depleted, and we're trying to rebuild that. The Rangers built a very good minor-league system and knew they were going to make a run. We've got to get in position to do that."

-- Jeff Wilson



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