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04/30/08 8:40 PM ET

Rangers hire Petroskey for new position

Former Baseball Hall of Fame president joins Texas front office

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers on Wednesday hired former National Baseball Hall of Fame president Dale Petroskey for the newly created position of executive vice president of marketing and community development.

"I am thrilled that we were able to bring Dale on board as a key member of our front-office team," Rangers president Nolan Ryan said. "I've seen his passion for baseball. He has a natural way of getting other people excited about the game."

Petroskey, 52, will oversee the franchise's staffs for marketing, community development and government relations, as well as the Texas Rangers Foundation. He previously served as an assistant White House press secretary in the Ronald Reagan administration (1985-87) and spent 12 years as an executive with the National Geographic Society (1988-99).

In July 1999, Petroskey took over as president of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, N.Y. He resigned from the Hall of Fame just over five weeks ago, a parting termed by the museum's executive committee to be "mutual" but based on concerns over his "business judgment" in charge of the museum.

Petroskey, who attended the Rangers' home opener this season as a guest of Ryan, will assume his new duties Thursday, and he said he is eager to get started.

"I knew from the first day I took that [Hall of Fame] job that I served at the pleasure of the board," Petroskey said. "And after nine years, they decided to make a change, as is their right. But change has been good for me, too. I'm really energized and excited about this opportunity."

Petroskey said he shares Ryan's vision of expanding the Rangers' fan base "and then making those fans love us more."

"We want to create a family-like bond with our fans. When the Rangers are playing, at home or on the road, we want the Metroplex to stop and love to watch the Rangers," Petroskey added. "It's going to be a challenge, but I think it starts with Nolan taking over. It starts on the field, but also with taking care of business off the field. We'll be open to things that work in other markets, which may or may not work here.

"We also plan to listen. All fans want is a good effort on the field, to see that ownership and management has a good plan going forward and will stick to it and for the club to be fan-friendly. Those are the kinds of things we intend to do here."

Ryan said: "Our goal is to build a team that is a World Series contender year after year and to bring home a World Series trophy for the people of this community as soon as possible.

"A key piece of that puzzle is to bring the Rangers to a wider and more receptive audience and create a family-like bond with the fans. We know Dale will be able to help lead us in that direction."

Ken Daley is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.