That really just happened. In the middle of the 2016 season, just weeks before the non-waiver trade deadline, the Minnesota Twins made one of the most monumental moves in franchise history. Terry Ryan's time as General Manager has finally come to an end. In the midst of a near guaranteed 90 loss season, Jim Pohlad has finally seen enough.
When it comes to baseball minds, there are few better in the game than Terry Ryan. He is an adept talent evaluator, a great person for the sport, and arguably an even better person. I'm not a journalist, and I don't pretend to have even the slightest semblance of a relationship with the Twins former head honcho. I've interacted with him in limited amounts during spring training trips, and he's always been great, but he's far from someone I know.
What I do know however, is that as big as the decision to remove Terry Ryan from his duties at the General Manager of the Minnesota Twins is for him, it's even more earth shattering for the organization. This is a man who has become the Twins as equally as they've become him. If there have been constants in life over the past 20 years, it's death, taxes, and Terry Ryan as the face of Twins baseball.
In deciding to turn the page, the Twins have in turn done something that was absolutely needed for themselves. The organization and front office had become one that the sport had passed by. Minnesota couldn't have been further from the industry leaders, and despite the talented youth throughout the organization, those expected to unleash it in the most balanced form consistently have failed. Terry Ryan had failed, Rob Antony had failed, and those on down the line had failed.
For now, Antony will take over. It's the middle of the season, and the Twins wouldn't be doing themselves any favors to make a rushed decision on who the next man in charge is. Presumably, Antony won't be granted anything higher than his immediate interim label, and that's absolutely for the better. With pieces at their disposal, whoever is handed the task of turning the Twins around will have some pretty attractive assets to work with.
There's going to be plenty of moving pieces for a while. The initial decision comes as a shock to both those inside of the organization, as well as plenty around Twins Territory. While not saying it wasn't warranted, the removal of Terry Ryan at the current time is quite the blindside. The future remains bright however, and maybe even more so with a more capable party in charge.
As the dust settles, July 18, 2016 will likely go down as one of the most monumental days in Twins history. Not only did the Pohlad family step away from a company figurehead, but they also chose to do so on their own actions, and for the betterment of the ball club as a whole. While being a massive shift, it's a baby step, but one that lands in what has to be considered the correct direction.