KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- Astros president Reid Ryan said Monday the Nolan Ryan Exhibit at Alvin Community College will be moved to the Texas Sports Hall of Fame in Waco, Texas, at some point soon. The Nolan Ryan Foundation built the museum in the 1990s to commemorate the career of the Hall of Fame pitcher who grew up in Alvin, just south of Houston.
Reid Ryan said a couple of employees at the museum are retiring and attendance has gone down over the years. He said the college will be able to utilize the building, which includes a classroom and a community center.
"As we get farther away from my dad's playing days, attendance has gone down over the years and we thought about it and decided it could be a better use of space for the college," he said. "We feel blessed the Texas Sports Hall of Fame agreed to take the exhibit and to have it there where thousands of sports fans can come."
Nolan Ryan's popularity, of course, extends well beyond Alvin and even Houston from his time as a player and ownership partner with the Texas Rangers and his ownership of the Triple-A Round Rock Express and Double-A Corpus Christi Hooks.
In the fall of 1996, the $1.2 million Nolan Ryan Center was completed and donated to Alvin Community College with space leased within the building for the Nolan Ryan Exhibit, which opened in early 1999. Nolan Ryan, who played with the Astros from 1980-88, is an executive advisor with the Astros.
The Texas Sports Hall of Fame opened in 1993 and also houses the Texas Tennis Museum and Hall of Fame and Texas High School Football Hall of Fame. The Hall of Fame expanded in 2010 to include a banquet hall, a health, fitness and education center and a Southwest Conference exhibit. The Hall is 35,000 square feet.
Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.