Jim Crane is a businessman who might be best-known to interested individuals for being the owner of the Houston Astros. This is particularly true because the story of his ownership of the baseball team is particularly dramatic, seeing as how he played an important role along with others in turning what was once a lackluster team into the winners of the 2017 World Series. Something that seems as though it had come out of a sports movie of some kind. Here are 10 things that you may or may not have known about Jim Crane:
1. Grew Up in Dellwood, MO
Crane was raised in a place called Dellwood, which can be found in the state of Missouri. To be exact, Dellwood can be found in Greater St. Louis, thus explaining its status as one of St. Louis’s suburbs. For the most part, Dellwood’s name doesn’t come up in the news much, which is perhaps unsurprising considering that its population was no more than 5,025 as of the census in 2010.
2. Donated $1 Million to Lutheran High School North
In time, Crane graduated from a local high school called Lutheran High School North. It is interesting to note that he has donated $1 million to said institution, which was put to use upgrading its athletic facilities as well as expanding the size of its campus.
3. Studied Industrial Safety at College
When he attended Central Missouri State University, Crane studied industrial safety, which is the field that is concerned with the safety as well as the general wellbeing of people who are at work. This is a rather important field for businesses, not least because a sick or injured worker is a worker who can’t contribute their expertise and experience to the success of a business’s revenue-earning operations.
4. Played Baseball in College
At Central Missouri State University, Crane played on its baseball team called the Central Missouri Mules, which had a profound impact on his life. For example, it was his coach who convinced him to stay in school when his father died between his freshman and sophomore years.
5. Has Donated to the Central Missouri Mules As Well
Perhaps unsurprisingly, Crane has donated money to the Central Missouri Mule as well. In fact, he was the the biggest donor for $1.2 million that was spent on upgrading the baseball team’s stadium, which is why the stadium is now called the James R. Crane Stadium.
6. Went Into the Insurance Business
Upon graduation, Crane went into the insurance business, which made a fair amount of sense considering his subject of study. Furthermore, insurance was what his father had done, meaning that it was a case of someone following in their father’s footsteps as well. With that said, Crane wasn’t involved with the insurance business for long because he went on to found an air freight business.
7. Good at Golfing
It is interesting to note that Crane is a scratch golfer, meaning a golfer with a handicap of zero. There are those who would claim that Crane is one of the best CEO golfers that can be found in the United States, though unfortunately, there is no real way to settle that particular question barring some rather improbable circumstances.
8. Forced to Accept Move to American League
Crane’s start as the owner of the Houston Astros was not the smoothest because he ran into a number of issues that the fans took offense to. One example is the baseball team’s move to the American League, though in that case, Crane was forced to do so as part of his deal to buy the ownership of the Houston Astros.
9. Conducted Thorough Examination of the Team Upon Becoming Owner
Upon becoming the owner of the Houston Astros, Crane conducted a thorough examination of both the baseball team and the baseball team’s business operations, which produced two conclusions. First, the baseball team was bad, which wasn’t exactly a huge surprise. Second, the systems that served as the foundation of the baseball team were bad as well, which necessitated a significant shake-up. Fortunately, Crane and Jeff Luhnow managed to find one another, which is how Crane winded up making Luhnow General Manager before giving him considerable leeway to do his job as he thought best.
10. Faced Ridicule for His Plans
Initially, there was a lot of doubt about Crane’s ownership. As a result, it should come as no surprise to learn that he faced a fair amount of ridicule for his plans to turn around the baseball team, particularly since it took some time for results to start showing up. Considering that the Houston Astros are now 2017 champions, the products of Crane’s plan are clear.