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Texas Rangers
Established 1961
Based in Dallas/Fort Worth since 1972
Major league affiliations
Current uniform
Ballpark
Major league titles
World Series titles (0) None
AL Pennants (2) 2011 • 2010
West Division titles (5) [1] 2011 • 2010 • 1999 • 1998 • 1996
Wild card berths (1) 2012 [2]

[1] - In 1994, a players' strike wiped out the last eight weeks of the season and all post-season. Texas was in first place by two games in the West Division (despite being 10 games under .500) when play was stopped. No official titles were awarded in 1994. • [2] - In 2012, there were two Wild Card winners in each league and a one-game playoff was played to determine who moved on to the Division Series

The Texas Rangers are a Major League Baseball team based in Arlington, Texas, a suburb between the two major cities of the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. They are in the West Division of the American League.

Franchise historyEdit

Washington SenatorsEdit

File:Richard Nixon throwing out opening pitch at Senators game, 1969.jpg

When the original Washington Senators moved to Minnesota following the 1960 season, Major League Baseball awarded a team to Washington, D.C., giving it the name of the old franchise. Elwood Richard Quesada lead the 10-man group that bought the franchise. The expansion Senators played their home games in Griffith Stadium during the 1961 season. From 1962 to 1971, the team played its games at D.C. Stadium (renamed RFK Stadium in January 1969), located two miles due east of the U.S. Capitol building, where East Capitol Street meets the Anacostia River.

In their eleven years, the new Washington Senators posted only one winning season (1969). Frank Howard was the team's most accomplished player. Hall of Famer Ted Williams managed the team from 1969 to 1971, and moved with the franchise to Texas in 1972.

Team uniform colors: Red, blue and white, with script "Senators" across the player's chest

Efforts to bring baseball to the MetroplexEdit

In 1962 the American League began to entertain the idea of bringing a professional baseball team to the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Charles O. Finley, the owner of the Kansas City Athletics, sought to move his team to Dallas, but the idea was rebuffed by the other AL team owners.

In 1964, the 10,000-seat Turnpike Stadium was constructed in Arlington for the minor-league Dallas-Fort Worth Spurs. The stadium, later renamed Arlington Stadium, would eventually serve as the Rangers' first home stadium until 1994.

Meanwhile, the Senators received new ownership in 1968 in the form of Bob Short, the Treasurer of the Democratic National Committee. He sought to move the team from Washington. On September 20, 1971, he got his wish, receiving approval from AL owners to move the franchise to Arlington for the 1972 season. Washington fans were outraged, leaving the team's public relations director, Ted Rodgers, with the unenviable task of putting a positive spin on such events as fans unfurling a giant banner that contained Short's name, preceded by a popular four-letter invective. A photo of the banner appeared on the front page of a DC newspaper the following day. Fan enmity was so great that in the team's final game in RFK Stadium on September 30 against the New York Yankees, the Senators were forced to forfeit the game after angry fans stormed the field and damaged much of the stadium and playing surface.

First years in TexasEdit

During the off-season, additions were made to Turnpike Stadium to increase its seating capacity, and it was officially renamed Arlington Stadium. Bob Short also announced that the franchise would be called the Texas Rangers (following the lead of the previous Senators team, which had become the Minnesota Twins). The team played its first game on April 15, 1972, a 1-0 loss at the California Angels. The next day, the Rangers defeated the Angels 5-1 for the team's first victory. The first home game was also against the Angels on April 21. After the season, Ted Williams retired as manager. Whitey Herzog was named the new manager, but he was replaced in the middle of the 1973 season by Billy Martin.

In 1974, the Rangers began to come into their own as a team. They finished the season 84-76 and in second place behind the eventual World Series champion Oakland Athletics. (The 1974 Rangers are still the only MLB team to finish above .500 after two consecutive 100-loss seasons.) Mike Hargrove was named AL Rookie of the Year, Billy Martin was named Manager of the Year, Jeff Burroughs was named AL Most Valuable Player, and Ferguson Jenkins was named the Comeback Player of the Year after winning a (still) club record 25 games. After a 44-51 start the following season, however, Martin was fired as the Rangers manager and replaced by Frank Lucchesi.

The Rangers' first four seasons set what has become a pattern for the franchise -- cycles of poor to mediocre seasons, followed by an occasional year of near-success, falling off the following year, and then reverting to poor to mediocre seasons.

After excellent seasons between 1977-79, the Rangers came very close in clinching a playoff spot in the first half of 1981. However, Texas lost the game before the strike hit, and the Oakland A's led the first-half Western Division by half-game. After 1981, the Rangers would not finish with a winning record for another five seasons. During this stretch, the Rangers made one of their worst (and most unpopular) trades ever, sending multi-Gold Glove (and highly popular) catcher Jim Sundberg to the Milwaukee Brewers for future Brewers' manager Ned Yost.

Valentine EraEdit

Bobby Valentine, who would eventually become the Rangers' longest-serving manager at 1,186 games, became steward over an influx of talent in the team in the late 1980s and 1990s. The 1986 season's success was made possible with the help of rookies Ruben Sierra and Pete Incaviglia. However, the Rangers finished five games behind division-winning California. Signing 41-year-old star pitcher Nolan Ryan prior to the 1989 season allowed Ryan to reach his 5,000th strikeout, 300th win and throw his sixth and seventh no-hitters with the Rangers. Coupled with the powerful bats of Juan González, Rubén Sierra, Julio Franco, Harold Baines, and Rafael Palmeiro and a pitching staff that also included Charlie Hough, Bobby Witt, Kevin Brown, and Kenny Rogers, fans expected much from the team. However, the team never improved past being average, and Valentine was let go during the 1992 season. One of the teams most popular players during this time was catcher Geno Petralli.


1987 Catchers SurplusEdit

The 1987 Texas Rangers set a record for being the only team in Major League history to carry four catchers on their roster for the entire season. Don Slaught, Darrell Porter, Mike Stanley, and Geno Petralli all split time as the team's catcher. Most teams seldom have more than two catchers. The catcher heavy roster did little to help the Rangers as they finished last with a 75-87 record. Many of the foursome would pinch hit or play DH if not catching.

Future U.S. President George W. Bush becomes Managing PartnerEdit

Meanwhile, in April of 1989, the Rangers' owner, Eddie Chiles, sold the team to an investment group headed by future President George W. Bush. Bush would serve as the Rangers' managing partner until he was elected Governor of Texas in 1994. During this time, the Rangers and the City of Arlington decided to construct a new stadium to replace the aging Arlington Stadium. Ground was broken on October 30, 1991 on what would become The Ballpark in Arlington (later renamed Ameriquest Field in Arlington).

Success in the 1990sEdit

1993Edit

In 1993, Kevin Kennedy took over managerial duties, leading the team for two seasons. The 1993 squad was the first since the 1974 team to seriously contend for a playoff berth in to mid-September. He was let go in 1994 despite leading the AL West prior to the players' strike. When commissioner Bud Selig canceled the remainder of the season, the strike officially wiped out what could have been the Rangers' first division championship. The positive was that their fans avoided watching an awful pennant race as the Rangers were ten games under .500 at the time of the strike.

1995Edit

1995 saw the beginnings of the most promise for the Rangers. With a brand new ballpark that hosted its first All-Star Game, Johnny Oates was hired as the Rangers' manager and promptly led them to their first AL West division title in 1996. The first Rangers' playoff series in the team's 24 year history saw the Rangers lose to the New York Yankees, but the team had finally made the playoffs. Oates was named AL Manager of the Year and Juan Gonzalez was named AL MVP. The team featured a powerful lineup of hitters including Ivan Rodriguez, Will Clark, Mark McLemore, Dean Palmer, Rusty Greer, Juan Gonzalez, and Mickey Tettleton, but struggled with pitching -- a reputation that dogs the Rangers to this day -- despite having Rick Helling, Aaron Sele, and John Wetteland on their roster. Oates also led the team to AL West championships in 1998 and 1999, but was let go halfway through the 2001 season as the Rangers were en route to their second straight last place finish.

Hicks EraEdit

Meanwhile, Bush sold the team to an investment group led by Dallas businessman Tom Hicks in 1998. In 1999, Nolan Ryan became the first player ever elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame to have a Rangers cap placed on his plaque.

The Alex Rodríguez experimentEdit

Prior to the 2001 season, star free-agent shortstop Alex Rodriguez, previously of the Seattle Mariners, was signed by the Rangers in the most lucrative deal in baseball history: a 10-year, US $252 million contract. The move was considered controversial and was frequently maligned by the media who thought that Hicks was placing too much emphasis on one player instead of spreading out money among many players, especially for a team that lacked significant pitching talent. Although Rodríguez's individual performance was outstanding, the Rangers continued to struggle, and manager Jerry Narron was fired following the 2002 season, replaced by seasoned manager Buck Showalter.

In the 2003 season, the Rangers finished in last place for the fourth straight year, and after a post-season fallout between Rodríguez and team management, the then-reigning AL MVP and new Rangers captain, Alex Rodríguez, was traded to the New York Yankees for Alfonso Soriano and Joaquin Arias.

The presentEdit

2004Edit

Prior to the 2004 season there was little hope for the Rangers to improve on their losing ways. However, behind a young team with good chemistry (spurred partially by comments from former Ranger Alex Rodríguez that he didn't want to play with a "bunch of kids"), the Rangers battled with the Anaheim Angels and Oakland Athletics for first place in the AL West for much of the season. Mark Teixeira, Alfonso Soriano, Michael Young, and Hank Blalock became one of the better tandems of batting infielders in the league with Young, Blalock, and Soriano being named to the 2004 All-Star Game. Soriano was named the All-Star MVP after going two for three with a three-run home run. The Rangers remained in contention until the last week of the season, eventually finishing in third place behind the Angels and A's, yet only three games out of first place. By comparison, the Seattle Mariners finished in fourth place team, 29 games out of first.

2005Edit

In 2005, the Rangers struggled to find consistency amid controversy and injuries. Frank Francisco and Carlos Almanzar, two key members of the bullpen, were sidelined for Tommy John surgery. Kenny Rogers, the team's ace pitcher, received a 20 game suspension from commissioner Bud Selig for attacking a cameraman at Ameriquest Field. (Rogers signed with the Tigers for the 2006 season after the Rangers declined to offer him a contract.) Shortly after a spectacular homestand where the Rangers swept all three series for the first time in team history, management unexpectedly placed opening-day starter Ryan Drese on waivers, where he was claimed by the Washington Nationals. After Drese's release and Rogers' suspension, the Rangers struggled to find consistency on the mound, and a disastrous road trip in August in which the Rangers went 1-12 all but assured that the Rangers would not make the playoffs in 2005.

2005-2006 OffseasonEdit

On October 4, 2005, the Rangers announced that John Hart would step aside as general manager and Jon Daniels would be promoted from assistant general manager to general manager. At 28 years and one month, Daniels is the youngest general manager in major league history.

Daniels and the Rangers front office had an active 2005-2006 offseason. Alfonso Soriano, often mentioned in trade speculation, was dealt to the Nationals for outfielders Brad Wilkerson and Terrmel Sledge. The Rangers made moves to acquire the pitching help that they have long sought, acquiring starter Vicente Padilla from the Philadelphia Phillies in exchange for Ricardo Rodriguez and acquiring San Diego Padres pitchers Adam Eaton and Akinori Otsuka in exchange for Chris Young, Adrian Gonzalez, and Sledge. Finally, they signed reigning AL-ERA leader and free agent Kevin Millwood to a five-year contract worth $60 million.

2006Edit

After a slow start, the Rangers spent much of the first half of the season contending for the American League West lead, but have fallen out of contention during the second half of the year. The pitching staff has seen some improvement and is ranked tenth in the American League in combined ERA after play on September 8, compared to a twelfth-place finish in 2005. Millwood and Padilla have anchored the starting rotation despite Ameriquest Field's deserved reputation as a hitter's ballpark.

However, the season has not gone without pitching problems, such as the inconsistency of former closer Francisco Cordero, who had blown nine of fifteen save chances before being traded to the Milwaukee Brewers as part of a significant six-player transaction – he has been replaced as closer by Akinori Otsuka, who has fared better with 29 saves in 32 chances.

On May 16, the Rangers twice blew nine-run leads in the same game, losing 14-13 to the New York Yankees. The Rangers overcame a seven-run deficit against the Oakland Athletics on May 25 to win 8-7, thanks to a Rod Barajas grand slam and two Ian Kinsler home runs. On June 8, the Rangers squandered a seven-run lead to lose against the woeful Kansas City Royals in a 16-12 loss.

June 11 featured one of the team's most devastating losses, when the Boston Red Sox went into the bottom of the ninth at Fenway Park down 4-2, facing their first back-to-back losses against the Rangers since 1997. With two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning and two men on, David Ortiz hit a 2-2 pitch from Akinori Otsuka deep into the right-center seats to give the Red Sox the win, 5-4. However, the Rangers won the second game in the doubleheader that day 13-6, generating a season-high 22 hits.

Rangers shortstop Michael Young was named the MVP of the 2006 All-Star game, played on July 11 in Pittsburgh, for his game-winning two-run triple in the ninth. Center fielder Gary Matthews, Jr. also played in the All-Star game.

The Rangers became the first team to make a significant deal near the trade deadline, acquiring outfielders Carlos Lee and Nelson Cruz from the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for Kevin Mench, Francisco Cordero, Laynce Nix and pitching prospect Julian Cordero (no relation to Francisco) on July 28.

The Yankees swept the Rangers in a three-game series at Ameriquest Field for the second time on July 24-26. Adam Eaton, who had injured his right middle finger during spring training and had been placed on the 60-day DL, made his first start of the season on July 25 in the second game of the series. He pitched three scoreless innings before a questionable call on two-strike pitch against Alex Rodriguez led to a Rodríguez walk, rather than making him the third out. Instead Eaton had a meltdown, walking Jorge Posada, hitting Aaron Guiel, walking Andy Phillips (which scored Rodríguez), and giving up an infield single to Miguel Cairo before being relieved by Ron Mahay. The Rangers eventually lost the game 7-4. The final game of the series saw Cordero and Otsuka both give up late leads in an 8-7 loss that was decided on a two-run homer by Jason Giambi in the ninth.

The Yankees' sweep was part of the Rangers' season-worst six-game losing streak. Texas finally snapped the skid on July 30 with a 15-2 win over Kansas City. Although the Rangers have maintained a roughly .500 record since the All-Star break, they have been unable to keep pace with the surging Oakland Athletics. As of September 8, the Rangers are 72-70 in third place in the AL West, ten games behind Oakland. The Rangers are not in contention in the American League wild card race.

Season recordsEdit

Washington SenatorsEdit

Year Record (W-L) Win Average Place
1961 61-100 .379 9th
1962 60-101 .373 10th
1963 56-106 .346 10th
1964 62-100 .383 9th
1965 70-92 .432 8th
1966 71-88 .447 8th
1967 76-85 .472 6th
1968 65-96 .404 10th
1969 86-76 .531 4th
1970 70-92 .432 7th
1971 63-96 .396 5th

Beginning in 1969, the Washington Senators began playing in the American League East

Texas RangersEdit

Year Record (W-L) Win Average Place
1972 54-100 .351 6th
1973 57-105 .352 6th
1974 84-76 .525 2nd
1975 79-83 .488 3rd
1976 76-86 .469 4th
1977 94-68 .580 2nd
1978 87-75 .537 2nd
1979 83-79 .512 3rd
1980 76-85 .472 4th
1981 57-48 .543 2nd/3rd
1982 64-98 .395 6th
1983 77-85 .475 3rd
1984 69-92 .429 7th
1985 62-99 .385 7th
1986 87-75 .537 2nd
1987 75-87 .463 6th
1988 70-91 .435 6th
1989 83-79 .512 4th
1990 83-79 .512 3rd
1991 85-77 .525 3rd
1992 77-85 .475 4th
1993 86-76 .531 2nd
1994 52-62 .456 1st
1995 74-70 .514 3rd
1996 90-72 .556 1st
1997 77-85 .475 3rd
1998 88-74 .543 1st
1999 95-67 .586 1st
2000 71-91 .438 4th
2001 73-89 .451 4th
2002 72-90 .444 4th
2003 71-91 .438 4th
2004 89-73 .549 3rd
2005 79-83 .488 3rd
2006 80-82 .494 3rd
2007 75-87 .463 4th
2008 79-83 .488 2nd
2009 87-85 .537 2nd
2010 90-72 .556 1st
2011 96-66 .593 1st
2012 93-69 .574 2nd

Notes:

Overall TotalsEdit

The Rangers have won 3,935 games and lost 4,351 over their history, equating to a .475 lifetime average. They are 19-25 in individual playoff games, and 4-5 overall for postseason series.[1]

Quick factsEdit

Founded: 1961 (by American League expansion, with the Los Angeles Angels)
Formerly known as: the Washington Senators, 1961-1971. (Not to be confused with the Washington Senators of 1901-1960, which became the Minnesota Twins in 1961, or the Washington Senators that existed from 1891-1899 and were contracted.)
Home ballpark: Rangers Ballpark in Arlington (known as The Ballpark in Arlington 1994-2003; Ameriquest Field 2004-2007)
Uniform colors: Blue, White, and Scarlet red
Logo design: A "T" superimposed on a baseball, set inside a circle with "TEXAS" on the top half and "RANGERS" on the bottom
Team motto: Every Day Is Game Day
Playoff appearances (6): 1996, 1998, 1999, 2010, 2011, 2012
Local radio: KESN 103.3, KSKY 660, KZMP 1540 (Spanish)
Local television: FSN Southwest, KTXA-21, Canal de Tejas (Spanish)
Spring Training facility: Surprise Stadium, Surprise, AZ


Until the 2010 season, the Rangers (when combined with their predecessor the Senators) were the oldest franchise that had yet to appear in a World Series; in fact, they had not won any playoff series. As of that time, the team had only one playoff victory, on the road at Yankee Stadium, in the franchise's first playoff game; they had never won a home playoff game.

See also: Lone Star Shootout (Rangers-Astros rivalry)

Baseball Hall of FamersEdit

Chuck Hinton and Frank Howard, who played for the franchise in Washington, are listed on the Washington Hall of Stars display at Robert F. Kennedy Stadium in Washington. So are Gil Hodges and Mickey Vernon, who managed the "New Senators." Vernon also played for the "Old Senators" who became the Minnesota Twins.

Nolan Ryan is the only player in the Baseball Hall of Fame who is depicted on his plaque as wearing a Rangers cap insignia.

Texas Rangers Baseball Hall of FamersEdit

Inductees

  • 2010
    • Tom Grieve, OF, 1970 & 1972-77; Executive, 1980-94 (GM 1984-94); Broadcaster, 1995-present

Retired NumbersEdit

AL MVPsEdit

AL Managers of the YearEdit

AL Rookies of the YearEdit

AL Gold GlovesEdit

Current rosterEdit

Updated December 22, 2013

Active Roster
Rotation
Bullpen
Catchers
Infielders
Outfielders
Manager
Coaches

Disabled List

60-Day

Minor league affiliationsEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. Excluding the AL Wild Card game the team lost in 2012.

See alsoEdit

External linksEdit

Template:MLB Team Texas Rangers

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