Ron Washington’s contract was set to expire after this season, but the Rangers have signed the 60-year-old manager to a two-year extension that will keep him in Texas through 2014.
Washington’s current deal was also a two-year extension inked after the 2010 season, which was the Rangers’ first of back-to-back AL championships.
Washington replaced Buck Showalter in 2007 and went just 75-87 in his first season, but the Rangers have increased their win total in each season since, going from 75 to 79 to 87 to 90 to 96 (which is a team record).
Overall he’s 427-383 (.527) in five seasons, which trails only Joe Girardi, Davey Johnson, Charlie Manuel, Mike Scioscia, and Ron Gardenhire among active managers with multiple seasons of experience.
No word yet on if Little Wash also got an extension.
Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.
Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.
Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.
The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.
Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.
Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.