ARLINGTON, Texas -- For the next five weekdays leading into Wednesday's Game 1, we're going to feature a timeline of the Rangers' season on and off the field. Consider it a way to recap what happened in 2010. Feel free to comment on some of the items and to let us know if we missed some. This first installment begins with the Winter Meetings last December and goes through January (two months for each installment will follow):
Dec. 8: Rangers president Nolan Ryan makes public his partnership with Pittsburgh attorney Chuck Greenberg. They are part of a group of investors hoping to buy the club. Greenberg attends part of the Winter Meetings as does Dennis Gilbert, another prospective buyer. Houston businessman Jim Crane is also a bidder.
Dec. 9: General manager Jon Daniels completes trade with the Orioles, sending Kevin Millwood and $3 million to Baltimore for reliever Chris Ray and a pick in the Rule 5 draft. The move frees up about $9 million in the budget.
Dec. 11: Rangers make official the signing of Rich Harden to a $6.5 million deal.
Dec. 15: Owner Tom Hicks chooses the group headed by Greenberg and Ryan as the one he will enter into exclusive negotiations with to buy the club. The decision comes after a flurry of activity, including resubmitted bids by Crane and the Greenberg-Ryan group. The hope then was to get a deal done by Opening Day.
Dec. 19: The proposed deal to send Boston’s Mike Lowell to Texas falls apart after Lowell fails a physical and needs surgery to repair a torn thumb ligament
Dec. 22: Texas agrees to terms with reliever Darren Oliver on a one-year contract with a vesting option for the second year.
Jan. 11: Rangers sign Vladimir Guerrero to a one-year deal with a mutual option to be their designed hitter.
Jan. 19: Colby Lewis, the former first-round pick of the Rangers, signs a two-year deal after spending two previous seasons in Japan.
Jan. 21: Club makes signing of utility infielder Khalil Greene official.
Jan. 23: Hicks Sports Group and Rangers Baseball Express, the name of the group headed by Greenberg and Ryan, strike a deal to complete the sale of the Rangers, pending approval from MLB and HSG’s creditors.
Jan. 31: Rangers expect pitchers Omar Beltre and Alexi Ogando, who were held up from entering the United States on visa issues stemming from their part in a human trafficking scandal, to be allowed to arrive in time for spring training.