The Rangers officially announced the hiring of Chris Woodward as their manager for the 2019 season. He signs a three-year deal with a club option for 2022 to become the 19th full-time manager in club history.
He will be introduced by the team at a press conference on Monday, November 5th at 10am CT at Globe Life Park in Arlington.
Woodward’s hiring brings an end to an exhaustive process to identify a successor to recently dismissed skipper Jeff Banister. He was replaced late in the season on an interim basis by Don Wakamatsu, who was considered a candidate for the full-time gig but evidently has not landed it. The hiring was initially reported last night by Bob Nightengale of USA Today (Twitter link). Woodward, who has most recently served as the Dodgers third base coach, was called a “frontrunner” earlier in the day by Jon Morosi of MLB.com (via Twitter).
The Rangers undertook an extensive search, but the initial effort failed to yield a clear candidate. Woodward, who just finished up his duties with the Dodgers in the World Series, was part of a second wave of names under consideration. Evidently, he aced the interview.
Woodward, 42, built a 12-year MLB career after originally being taken in the 54th round of the 1994 draft. He last saw major-league action in 2011 and hung up his spikes for good after the 2012 campaign, so he isn’t that far removed from his playing days.
Since that time, Woodward has worked in both the Mariners and Dodgers organizations. With Seattle, he served as minor league infield coordinator before moving up to the MLB staff for two campaigns. He ended up joining the staff of Dodgers skipper Dave Roberts. Over the past three seasons, he has high-fived many a homer-trotting Dodger and helped guide the organization to consecutive World Series appearances.
Said the Rangers, via a press release:
“We are excited to welcome Chris Woodward and his family to the Texas Rangers,” said Rangers President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Jon Daniels. “Chris brings high energy, outstanding leadership and communication skills, a strong knowledge of the game and its evolving strategies, and great integrity—attributes that we feel are vital for our next manager. We believe these traits will resonate with our players, our staff, and our fans. He has also been a big part of a very successful stretch in Los Angeles.
“We interviewed a number of strong candidates during an extensive interview process for our managerial role and believe we have found the right fit in Chris Woodward. We look forward to working with him and everyone on the baseball staff to develop and grow a culture that will lead to success for many years to come.”