SALEM, Va. – The Salem Red Sox announced Thursday that Ryan Shelton, President and general manager, has accepted the position of vice president of business operations at Michigan International Speedway. Shelton will remain in Salem through the start of the 2019 season and will officially step down on Sunday, April 14.
Shelton joined the Red Sox in April 2013 as the vice president of ticket sales and service and was promoted to general manager at the conclusion of that same season. In 2015, after just two seasons serving as GM, he received the Calvin Falwell Award, which recognized him as the Carolina League Executive of the Year. He was subsequently promoted to president of the club, a title he has held for the past three seasons.
The Red Sox have enjoyed incredible success across all areas of the club under his leadership over the past five seasons. Shelton immediately brought a renewed focus on the fan experience and unparalleled guest experience, which led to season tickets growing by nearly five times, group tickets nearly doubling and total attendance soaring to new heights. Sellout crowds have become a regular occurrence at Haley Toyota Field as the ballpark has seen five of the seven highest-attended games in its history and 45 of the 50 highest-attended games of the Red Sox era during Ryan’s tenure.
“I am incredibly grateful to the fans across Virginia’s Blue Ridge who welcomed me to the area six years ago,” said Shelton. “It has been an honor to continue the great baseball tradition that began in Salem back in 1939.”
Allen Lawrence, the current vice president and assistant general manager of the club, will be named interim general manager for the 2019 season when Shelton departs. Lawrence is entering his 18th season with the organization and has also played an integral role in the recent success of the club, working hand in hand with Shelton on a variety of new programs and initiatives.
“On behalf of the Boston Red Sox and Fenway Sports Group, I would like to express our deepest appreciation to Ryan for his passion for and dedication to Salem over the past six years,” said Salem managing director Tim Zue. “While he most certainly will be missed, I am thrilled to have someone as talented as Allen Lawrence ready to step right into Ryan’s shoes to ensure a seamless transition.”
The Salem Red Sox return to Haley Toyota Field for their home opener on Thursday, April 11 at 7:05 p.m. Tickets are available by calling 540-389-3333 or by visiting www.salemsox.com.