The Rangers on Wednesday announced that they’ve brought veteran coach Mike Maddux back for a second stint as the team’s pitching coach. The team also announced that longtime Royals general manager Dayton Moore has joined the organization as a senior advisor to the baseball operations department.
Maddux, 61, is among the game’s most experienced and respected pitching coaches. A veteran of 15 Major League seasons himself — and the older brother of Hall of Famer Greg Maddux, of course — the elder Maddux brother retired in 2000 and has served as a Major League pitching coach every year since 2003. Maddux enjoyed a six-year stint with the Brewers before spending seven years as the Rangers’ pitching coach, two as the Nationals’ pitching coach and most recently, five seasons as the Cardinals’ pitching coach.
Maddux’s return is the latest step in an organizational shakeup that saw manager Chris Woodward and longtime president of baseball operations Jon Daniels ousted over the summer. Veteran manager Bruce Bochy was recently named the new skipper in Arlington, with former big league outfielder Will Venable — who’s been fast rising through the MLB coaching ranks — brought aboard as the organization’s “associate manager.” The Rangers announced back in early October that co-pitching coaches Doug Mathis and Brendan Sagara would not return next season, and in recent days, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News had reported that Maddux was emerging as a prime candidate to reprise the role he held in Texas from 2009-15.
Turning to Moore, his appointment as a senior advisor to general manager Chris Young will give Young some valuable experience from which to draw. Young only retired as a pitcher himself following the 2017 season, and after a quick stop working in the league’s central offices, he was tabbed as the Rangers’ GM, working underneath Daniels.
That arrangement lasted fewer than three seasons, and Young is now in the midst of his first offseason as the primary baseball operations decision-maker with any organization. He’ll still have autonomy when it comes to roster decisions, of course, but Moore can speak from a place of experience while providing guidance. The pair are already familiar with one another, as Young spent the final three seasons of his 13-year Major League career pitching for Moore’s Royals.
In a situation not entirely dissimilar to the Rangers’ front office shakeup, Moore found himself relieved from his duties as Kansas City’s president of baseball operations just a few months ago. Daniels had been running baseball operations for Texas since 2005, while Moore was tabbed as Kansas City’s GM a year later, in 2006. Both were replaced by in-house general managers who were ascending to that post for the first time: Young in Texas, and longtime Moore lieutenant J.J. Picollo in Kansas City. Daniels has since been named a senior advisor to the Rays’ baseball operations department.
It’s feasible that Moore will again pursue a position of greater prominence in a different organization’s front office, but for the time being, he’ll bring more than 30 years of scouting acumen and nearly 20 years of experience running his own baseball operations outfit to the Rangers as they gear up for what’s expected to be a second consecutive aggressive offseason. Texas cannonballed into the deep end of the free-agent pool last offseason, signing Corey Seager, Marcus Semien and Jon Gray for a combined $556MM. Now, after vastly overhauling their front office and dugout leadership, they’re expected to aggressively pursue top-of-the-market starting pitching and have already been connected to the likes of Jacob deGrom, Carlos Rodon and Kodai Senga.