Per T.R. Sullivan, among others:
Thad Levine has decided to stay with the Rangers and not interview with the Astros.
So, there you have it. Jon Daniels' de facto right-hand man is going to remain at his side through at least the end of the 2012 season, if not longer. It wasn't that hard to envision a scenario where Levine stayed put, but it was a bit harder to envision Levine not even interviewing for a GM position.
The exact rationale behind Levine's rejection haven't yet hit the wire, and I am interested in seeing what his on-the-record rationale for turning down the Astros is. I suspect that he's going to cite factors such as his comfort level in DFW and possibly his family in his official statement to the press, but I wouldn't be surprised if the bigger reason was tied to Levine taking full stock of that mess down in Houston, and arriving at the conclusion that he was better off retaining all of the capital he's built up within the Rangers organization than becoming mired in a massive rebuilding project and only having three years or so to produce some tangible results before coming under significant fire.
There's also the news of Levine being considered for the position of director of player development, which may also be playing into this ... it could be that Levine has emerged as the front-runner for that position, which would allow him the opportunity to further diversify his skill set and better his chances of being seriously considered for a GM vacancy that's more appealing than the one down in Houston right now.
Great news, in any event.
Update: Jeff Wilson has grabbed some quotes from Levine in which he sort of (but not really) explains why he's not pursuing the Astros opportunity:
Assistant general manager Thad Levine has decided that he will not interview with the Astros for their GM vacancy or any other jobs that might come open. Said Levine: "My family and I have happily decided to forego any current outside opportunities and remain part of the Texas Rangers family. We are extremely appreciative of all the opportunities that Jon Daniels, Nolan Ryan and ownership have provided to us. Winning a championship and bringing it home to the Metroplex remains my singular focus."