Jeff Banister is the Rangers new manager
ARLINGTON – The Rangers have hired Pirates bench coach Jeff Banister as their new manager, according to a source. He replaces Tim Bogar, who served as interim manager for the final 22 games of the season.
Banister, Bogar and Indians bullpen coach Kevin Cash were the three finalists for the position. The Rangers also interviewed pitching coach Mike Maddux, Triple A manager Steve Buechele, White Sox third base coach Joe McEwing, Red Sox bench coach Torey Lovullo and Puerto Rico winter league executive Alex Cora.
The outside hire leaves the coaching staff in a state of uncertainty. Hitting coach Dave Magadan has been approached by the Mets and Yankees. The Rangers have reportedly reached out to Athletics hitting coach Chili Davis. Maddux remains unsigned for next season.
Banister is a Texas native with an extraordinary background. He developed bone cancer in his left leg in high school that doctors initially wanted to amputate. But the leg was saved through multiple operations and he continued his baseball career in college. At Baytown (Tx.) College, he suffered a crushed vertebrae as a catcher in a collision at home plate and was paralyzed for ten days. <p>
He still ended up playing at the University of Houston and was drafted by the Pirates in the 25th round of the 1986 First-Year Player Draft. He has spent 29 years in the Pirates organization as a player, coach and Minor League coordinator. He had one at-bat in the Major Leagues with a single in 1992. <p>
Bogar served as interim manager for the Rangers after Ron Washington resigned on September. Bogar was in his first season as Washington’s bench coach and led the Rangers to a 14-8 record, including 13 wins in their final 16 games.