Baseball Front Offices
In 1933 he was named as traveling secretary for the Cincinnati Reds, while continuing to spend his offseasons as an official. After later spending one season as general manager of the team's Durham, North Carolina minor league club, Lane was elevated to assistant general manager for the Reds under Warren Giles on November 17, 1936.
After the U.S. entered World War II, Lane joined the Navy and spent the next four years in the service before returning in 1946 as general manager of the Kansas City Blues, a top farm club of the New York Yankees.
One year in that position led to a two-year stretch as president of the minor league American Association. Lane then resigned that post in 1948 to become general manager of the White Sox. Over the next seven years, he would shape the team into a contender after nearly two decades of mediocrity. In seven years with the White Sox, he made 241 trades.
After resigning in September 1955, Lane quickly found work again in St. Louis, where he spent two seasons before moving to Cleveland in November 1957. As General Manager of the St. Louis Cardinals, he tried to trade popular superstar hitter Stan Musial to the Philadelphia Phillies for star pitcher Robin Roberts. When news of the proposed transaction was leaked to the radio, Cardinals' owner August Busch stopped the deal.
While in Cleveland, Lane gained infamy by trading popular star slugger Rocky Colavito to the Detroit Tigers for excellent hitter Harvey Kuenn, resulting in the so called "Curse of Colavito." He left Cleveland in January 1961 for an executive position with the Kansas City Athletics, but the combination of Lane and volatile owner Charlie Finley led to an early end to his employment just eight months later. The lingering feud between the two over compensation would result in a lawsuit that took over three years to settle.
Due to his uncertain contract status Lane was forced out of baseball during this period, but found employment on May 7, 1962 as general manager of the National Basketball Association's Chicago Zephyrs.
On January 8, 1965, Lane settled his lawsuit with Finley, accepting $113,000 plus the freedom to take another baseball front-office position. Early reports of his being part of an ownership group to buy the Boston Red Sox, as well as potentially serving as president of the Texas League, proved to be unfounded. Instead, the Baltimore Orioles hired him as a special assistant to general manager Lee MacPhail on March 7, serving primarily as a scout, a post he would hold for nearly six years.
Shortly before his 75th birthday, Lane was hired as general manager for the Milwaukee Brewers. Following that stint, he ended his career as a scout for both the California Angels and Texas Rangers.
Famous quotes containing the words offices, baseball and/or front:
“He has erected a multitude of new offices by a self-assumed power, & sent hither swarms of officers to harass our people & eat out their substance.”
—Thomas Jefferson (17431826)
“Compared to football, baseball is almost an Oriental game, minimizing individual stardom, requiring a wide range of aggressive and defensive skills, and filled with long periods of inaction and irresolution. It has no time limitations. Football, on the other hand, has immediate goals, resolution on every single play, and a lot of violenceitself a highlight. It has clearly distinguishable hierarchies: heroes and drones.”
—Jerry Mander, U.S. advertising executive, author. Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television, ch. 15, Morrow (1978)
“And into the gulf between cantankerous reality and the male ideal of shaping your world, sail the innocent children. They are right there in front of uswild, irresponsible symbols of everything else we cant control.”
—Hugh ONeill (20th century)