Q&A With the President of the Round Rock Express


For nearly 20 years the Round Rock Express have entertained the public at the Dell Diamond. Over that time the Express have become a staple of the Triple-A scene and our community, growing into the 40 million dollar club and one of the most successful teams in the MiLB. The Express recently became the Houston Astros Triple-A Affiliate and recently I had the opportunity to talk to one of the men behind that move, President of the Express Chris Almendarez and ask a few questions about being a Minor League Executive.

Q: How did you first get your foot in the door with the Express?

Almendarez: My story is not the norm… I played college baseball for the University of Houston and have always loved the game. I was coaching my son Luke with Reid Ryan who was the President of the Round Rock Express in 2008 and his dad became the President of Texas Rangers. I remember congratulating him on his dad becoming President of the Rangers and he asked me if I would ever be interested in working in baseball. I ended up coming on board with the Express in October of 2009.

Q: What’s a typical day like in a minor league office?

Almendarez: Everyday is different… that’s the beauty of working in baseball. Game days and non-game days vary depending on the time of the year. Most of the time our focus is the fan experience and making sure everyone has a great experience at Dell Diamond. From our sponsors, fans, and team we always want to give them the best experience.

Q: What is your favorite part of being at the helm of the Express? What’s the hardest part?

Almendarez: I challenge our staff every day on what their “Why” is and then bringing that “Why “ into giving our fans the best 3-hour experience that we can. Someone is walking into Dell Diamond for the very time every night. We want to make sure whatever they are going through we give them great memories… When my wife was battling brain cancer and going through her treatment, Dell Diamond was my solace and I could come out to a game and just watch baseball and take my mind off of things. The hardest part is rainy days… my general manager and I have to make the call on the game.

Q: What’s your relationship with your major league team and its other Affiliates?

Almendarez: We get a chance to meet with them every December at The Winter Meetings. It’s great to have colleagues in the same business with the same goals.

Q: Why do you think baseball’s developmental system has been so successful while other sports haven’t been able to achieve the same success?

Almendarez: Baseball’s development system allows kids the time to develop. When a kid is signed they start a 6-year development plan to get to the big leagues. Some make it sooner and some don’t, it allows the players the time they need to develop.

Q: What’s your best advice for young athletes who are striving to play on a professional level?

Almendarez: Challenge yourself to get better every day. What are you doing every day to get better? My college coach used to say take care of the little things and the big things will take care of themselves.