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The Texas Rangers have a new sheriff in town. That’s how the team announced the hiring of former Los Angeles Dodgers third-base coach Chris Woodward as their new manager.
USA Today’s Bob Nightengale was the first to report the news on Friday evening.
The hiring comes after Fox Sports Jon Morosi deemed Woodward the front runner for the Texas job earlier Friday.
Woodward will replace Jeff Banister, who was fired on Sept. 21 as the team neared the end of its second straight losing season. Don Wakamatsu, who was considered a candidate for the full-time job, finished the season as the interim manager.
Banister was hired prior to the 2015 season. He led the Rangers to consecutive division titles to begin his tenure, but Texas lost 172 games over his final two seasons. He finished with a 325-313 record.
The process certainly took longer than the Rangers had hoped. It’s reported they didn’t find a good match during their first wave of interviews, so they decided to continue the search even beyond the postseason. Woodward was brought in during their second batch of interviews after Woodward and the Dodgers completed the World Series.
Woodward has been on the Dodgers staff since December of 2015. After his playing career ended following the 2012 season, he initially served as an infield coach for the Seattle Mariners. In 2016, Woodward managed New Zealand as they attempted to qualify for the 2017 World Baseball Classic. But that’s his only managerial experience.
With the Rangers job filled, the Baltimore Orioles are the only team with a managerial opening.
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