After two consecutive losing seasons, including a last-place finish this year, the Texas Rangers fired Jeff Banister as manager, the club announced Friday.
Bench coach Don Wakamatsu will serve as interim manager for the remainder of the season, beginning with tonight’s game against the Seattle Mariners.
“This was not an easy decision and comes after a long period of evaluation," said Rangers president of baseball operations and general manager Jon Daniels. "However, we feel that a change in the leadership of our Major League club is necessary as we move forward. Once this conclusion was reached, I felt it was appropriate to make the move now. On behalf of the entire organization, I wish Jeff and his family the best.”
Banister was hired before the 2015 season and led the club to back-to-back first place finishes in the American League West. Neither trip to the postseason, however, resulted in a series win. The lost to the Toronto Blue Jays each time in the AL Division Series. The Rangers finished a disappointing third place last season and currently sit in last place in the division at 64-88.
In four seasons with the Rangers, Banister posted a record of 325-313. He is one of three Rangers managers, along with Johnny Oates (1996) and Buck Showalter (2004), to be named AL Manager of the Year, when he won the accolade in 2015.
Banister, who had one more year remaining on his contract, is due $950,000 for 2019.
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