By STEPHEN HAWKINS
AP Baseball Writer
Jon Daniels is out as president of baseball operations for the Texas Rangers after two World Series appearances during 17 years leading the club, likely finishing his tenure with a string of six consecutive losing seasons.
Team owner Ray Davis said Wednesday that Daniels was being relieved of his duties immediately after the decision was made not to renew his contract at the end of this year.
Daniels’ departure came two days after manager Chris Woodward was fired in his fourth season. It also occurred less than nine months after the Rangers committed more than a half-billion dollars to sign free agent infielders Corey Seager and Marcus Semien, and starting pitcher Jon Gray.
Daniels was the youngest general manager ever in the majors when he got the job with the Rangers at age 28 in October 2005. He added the title of president of baseball operations in 2013, and held both roles until Chris Young was brought in as the team’s general manager in December 2020.
“Jon’s accomplishments in his 17 years running our baseball operations department have been numerous. … His impact on the growth of our player development, scouting, and analytics groups has been immense. Jon has always had the best interests of the Rangers organization in mind on and off the field and in the community,” Davis said. “But the bottom line is we have not had a winning record since 2016 and for much of that time, have not been competitive in the AL West division.”
While Davis said he was certain the organization was heading in the right direction, he felt the team would benefit from a change in front-office leadership. The Rangers said Young will assume oversight of all aspects of their baseball operations department.
The Rangers went to the World Series in 2010 and 2011, then won AL West titles again in 2015 and 2016. They have since gone into the longest streak of consecutive losing seasons since moving to Texas a half-century ago. After splitting their first two games under interim manager Tony Beasley, they would have to win 29 of their last 46 games to avoid another losing season.
When addressing Woodward’s firing on Monday, Daniels said he took a lot of responsibility for the team’s performance over the last six years, and acknowledged that the Rangers haven’t been good enough in that span.
“But ultimately, this is a team effort. … When we were good, it wasn’t about me. It’s always been a team effort,” Daniels said. “We have a ways to go. We have a lot of good people here. As far as my personal accountability or situation, that’s something we’ll address down the line.”
Daniels didn’t elaborate then on what he meant, but his situation with the team became clear Wednesday.
Young, a Dallas native, was a senior vice president for Major League Baseball when he was hired by the Rangers as general manager. The 6-foot-10 Young played baseball and basketball at Princeton before pitching in 13 major league seasons with five teams. He made his big league debut with the Rangers in 2004 and he won a World Series title with Kansas City in 2015.
“Chris Young is one of the top young baseball executives in the business and in his 21 months on the job has brought welcome energy and new ideas to the organization,” Davis said. “I am confident in Chris’ ability to lead our baseball operations with the goal of producing a consistent winner on the field.”
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