The Texas Rangers are considering moving on from their manager Jeff Banister, according to a report from Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Banister, the 2015 AL Manager of the year, is currently under contract through the 2019 season after the club exercised his option immediately following the 2017 season.
Banister, 54, was brought on to manage the team prior to the 2015 season, his first at the helm of a major league club. After back-to-back AL West titles to begin his tenure, the Rangers have slumped to a 64-88 mark this season, 31 games back of the division-leading Astros, after a disappointing 2017 campaign.
Per Wilson, though, it’s Banister’s inconsistent, and at times inadequate, communication skills that may lead to his departure, and not the team’s recent performance on the field.
The article, well worth a full read for Rangers fans, details multiple reports of players relaying the perceived communication issues. Per Wilson, players will often arrive at the ballpark unsure of whether or not they’ll be playing that day, even if they’ve been previously assured of a day off. Starting pitchers, typically the most steadfast creatures of habit, are often not informed of when their next start will take place, and are thus confused as to how best to prepare.
With General Manager Jon Daniels comfortable embarking on a full-scale rebuild, what with his newly-inked contract in place, Wilson makes certain that the club’s manager of the future will be unilaterally committed to the development of young talent. So far Banister appears on board, but only time well tell if the front office feels the same.