Prior to his four years with Minor League Baseball, Purpura worked for the Houston Astros for 14 seasons, including serving as the club’s General Manager from Nov. 1, 2004-Aug. 27, 2007. The Astros won its lone National League pennant and made its only World Series appearance in 2005 during Purpura’s tenure.
Purpura also spent seven seasons in the dual role of Assistant General Manager and Farm Director for the Astros. In 2001, the Astros organization was named the Major League Organization of the Year by Baseball Weekly, Baseball America, Topps and Sportsticker. Purpura joined the Astros in January of 1994, serving stints as Assistant Director of Minor League Operations and Director of Player Relations.
He spent two seasons as a founding member of the staff of the Arizona Fall League after beginning his baseball career with player development stints with the Angels and Padres from 1990-92. A native of Oak Lawn, Ill., Purpura graduated from Chicago's Loyola University in 1986 and earned a law degree from the Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego in 1992. He was inducted into the Oak Lawn Community High School (Ill.) Hall of Fame in November 2005 and was awarded the Roland Hemond Meritorious Service Award in November 2010.
Tingler, 31, will be in his sixth season in the Texas organization in 2012. He spent last season as Coordinator of Instruction for the club’s Arizona and Dominican Republic operations. He served as the organization’s manager in the Arizona League (2010) and Dominican Summer League (2008-09), leading clubs to first-place finishes in each of those three years. He joined the organization as a coach in the fall of 2006.
Tingler played four minor league seasons from 2003-06 in the Toronto and Texas organizations after being a 10th round selection in the 2003 June draft by the Blue Jays. He has a standout career as a player at the University of Missouri in his native state.
RANGERS SIGN THREE TO MINOR LEAGUE CONTRACTS: The Rangers have signed three players to minor league contracts with invitations to major league spring training: C Dusty Brown, SS Luis Hernandez, and INF Yangervis Solarte (pronounced Yahn-HUR-veese Soh-LAHR-tay). Brown, 29, has appeared in 25 games at the major league level with Boston and Pittsburgh over the past three seasons, including 9 games with the Pirates last year. At the minor league level, Brown hit .285 (49-172) with 7 home runs and 28 RBI for Indianapolis last season (AAA). He was originally drafted by Boston in 2000 and spent 10 years in the Red Sox organization. Hernandez, 27, spent the entire 2011 campaign with Triple-A Buffalo in the New York Mets farm system, batting .240 (97-404) with 6 home runs and 54 RBI in 121 games. He has seen action in 120 big league games in his career with Baltimore, Kansas City, and New York-NL, last appearing with the Mets in 2010. He was originally signed by Atlanta as a non-drafted free agent in 2000. Solarte, 24, earned Eastern League Postseason All-Star honors in 2011, batting .329 (151-459) with 36 doubles, 7 home runs and, and 49 RBI for Double-A New Britain in the Minnesota Twins organization. The switch-hitter appeared primarily at second base, while also logging time in left field for the Rock Cats. While he has never appeared in the majors, he has compiled a .288 average over 6 seasons in the Minnesota organization after the Twins signed him as a non-drafted free agent in 2005. Solarte is currently with Aragua in the Venezuelan Winter League, batting .304 (14-46) with 3 doubles, a triple, and 6 RBI in 15 games.