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Rangers announce coaching staff

RANGERS ANNOUNCE 2015 MAJOR LEAGUE COACHING STAFF
Maddux, Magadan, Hawkins, and Jones return, three others promoted from player development;
Third base coach still to be determined; Adcock, Figaro, and Lucas all outrighted off 40-man roster
 
Arlington, Texas – The Texas Rangers today announced the club’s 2015 major league coaching staff, with the exception of third base coach, a position that will be finalized at a later date. 
 
Pitching coach Mike Maddux, hitting coach Dave Magadan, bullpen coach Andy Hawkins, and assistant hitting coach Bobby Jones will all return to the staff.  New additions are bench coach Steve Buechele, first base coach/catching instructor Hector Ortiz, and major league field coordinator Jayce Tingler.
 
Maddux and Hawkins return for a seventh season in their respective roles, the longest-tenured members of the staff.  Magadan returns for his third season as hitting coach while Jones will be in his position for a second straight year.
 
Buechele, 53, will be a major league coach for the first time.  He has spent the past six seasons as a manager in the Rangers farm system, serving at High-A Bakersfield (2009), Double-A Frisco (2010-13), and Triple-A Round Rock (2014).  As a minor league manager, Buechele guided his clubs to postseason berths in four of his six seasons.  Originally selected by Texas in the fifth round of the 1982 June draft out of Stanford University, the former third baseman played 1334 games over 11 seasons in the majors with Texas (1985-91, 1995), Pittsburgh (1991-92), and Chicago-NL (1992-95).  Buechele still ranks second in Rangers history with 835 games at third base, trailing only Buddy Bell (901).
 
Ortiz, 45, will be in his first major league coaching position, although he has spent extended stints with the big league club as a catching instructor the past few years.  Next year will be his 10th season in the Texas organization, having served as hitting coach at Rookie-level Spokane (2006-08), manager (2009) and hitting coach (2010) at Low-A Hickory, manager for the Arizona League Rangers (2011), and as the farm system’s catching coordinator (2011-14). He also managed Ponce in the Puerto Rican Winter League after the 2012 season.  Ortiz played 93 games over four major league seasons with Kansas City (1998, 2000-01) and Texas (2002).
 
Tingler, who turns 34 next month, will be in his first major league position.  He has spent eight seasons with Texas, including the past three (2012-14) as field coordinator for the minor league system.  Tingler also served as the club’s coordinator of instruction for both Arizona and Dominican Republic operations in 2011 after three campaigns as a manager for club’s Dominican Summer League squad (2008-09) and Arizona League team (2010).  In each of his three seasons as a manager, each club finished in first place.  He began his coaching career in the Dominican as a hitting coach in 2007 after a four-season minor league career in the Toronto (2003-05) and Texas (2006) organizations.
 
TEXAS RANGERS 2015 MAJOR LEAGUE COACHING STAFF
Manager – Jeff Banister
Bench coach – Steve Buechele
Pitching coach – Mike Maddux
Hitting coach – Dave Magadan
First base coach – Hector Ortiz
Third base coach – TBD
Bullpen coach – Andy Hawkins
Field coordinator – Jayce Tingler
Asst. hitting coach – Bobby Jones
 
TRANSACTIONS/ROSTER UPDATE: Right-handed pitchers Nate Adcock and Alfredo Figaro, along with infielder Ed Lucas, have all cleared waivers and been assigned outright to Triple-A Round Rock.  Adcock has turned down the assignment to become a free agent. 
 
With free agents Scott Baker, Neal Cotts, and Colby Lewis all coming off the major league roster Thursday, plus the Rangers declining the 2015 club option on Alex Rios to make him a free agent, there are now 31 players on the team’s 40-man roster.

Rangers make offer to free agent pitcher Colby Lewis

The Rangers have made an opening offer to free agent pitcher Colby Lewis and are awaiting feedback from his agent Alan Nero. One factor in the negotiations is Nero also represents manager Joe Maddon, who has opted out of his contract with the Rays, is also a free agent and has become the hottest topic in baseball during the World Series.

The Rangers desire to get something done with Lewis reflects their determination to address the starting rotation as the top priority this winter. The Rangers are also engaging a number of teams in trade discussions concerning starting pitching.

Although this is a deep free agent class for starting pitching – a list that includes Jon Lester, James Shields and Max Scherzer – the Rangers are more likely to explore the trade market rather than spend big money on the free agent market.

The Rangers other priority is to fill out their coaching staff. On Friday the Rangers are expected to announce at least some positions including the return of pitching coach Mike Maddux and hitting coach Dave Magadan. The Rangers are also expected to announce the promotion of Steve Buechele to bench coach and Hector Ortiz as the catching instructor to replace Bengie Molina, who is not expected to return.

Magadan expected to return

Hitting coach Dave Magadan is expected to be back with the Rangers. The club has not officially announced that yet but those are the indications under a solar eclipse. Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that he is no longer a candidate in Oakland..

Bogar won’t coach for the Rangers

Interim manager Tim Bogar is not returning to the Rangers. That was the conclusion after Bogar talked with GM Jon Daniels and manager Jeff Banister

Rangers announce Jeff Banister as new manager

The Rangers have officially announced Jeff Banister as their new manager

He will be introduced at a press conference on Friday

Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said the club vetted over 40 names before selecting eight to interview. He said 12 club officials participated in the interview process.

Daniels said Banister “won the job” rather than anybody else lost it.

“What stood out is his presence,” Daniels said. “He is an impressive guy to meet. You can understand how he can command a room.”

The next step is set the coaching staff. Third base coach Gary Pettis has taken a job with the Astros.

Other coaches will meet with Banister including Tim Bogar and pitching coach Mike Maddux. Hitting coach Dave Magadan is interviewing with the Yankees and Mets.

Daniels said Banister will not have to keep any coaches he doesn’t want. Daniels will also have a say in the coaching staff.

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.

Banister is Rangers manager

Jeff Banister will be the next Rangers manager. An Announcement is expected today

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