From Bob Tompkins of the Alexandria Daily Town Talk (via MLB Trade Rumors) comes word that veteran reliever Russ Springer has decided to hang up his cleats for good.
The 42-year-old native of Alexandria, Louisiana broke into the majors back in 1992 as a reliever for the Yankees. He played for 10 different teams throughout his 18-season MLB career and will finish with a 4.52 career ERA and 1.37 WHIP.
Springer was at his best while with the Cardinals, posting a 2.18 ERA over 76 relief appearances in 2007 and a 2.32 across 70 relief appearances in 2008. He made only two appearances last season for the Reds before season-ending hip surgery forced him to the 60-day disabled list in August.
“For the first time in my career, it feels right,” Spring told the Daily Town Talk. “This year, I’ve had no pull towards going to the gym. I’m totally content to be with the family. There comes a time when you can ask only so much of your body physically, and you’ve got to stop beating it up.”
It sure sounds like he is at peace with the decision. Which is good, because the free agent market for him was not pretty and he would have probably had to settle for a minor league contract and spring training invite.
The Texas Rangers just announced that they have fired Jeff Banister as the team’s manager. Bench coach Don Wakamatsu has been named interim manager for the remainder of 2018 season.
Banister was in the last year of his contract with the club, but there was an option for 2019. Rangers brass, obviously, has decided to go in a different direction following what will be the club’s worst finish in Banister’s tenure. At the moment the Rangers are 64-88 and are assured of last place in the AL West.
Banister was hired before the 2015 season and led the Rangers to first place finishes in each of his first two seasons, willing the Manager of the Year Award in 2015. The club fell to a disappointing third place and a 78-84 record last season, however and, after an offseason that neither helped the Rangers rebuild OR reload, this season the descent has continued.
Injuries and under achievement has been the order of the day for the past two years and, with the career of Adrian Beltre nearing its end and the Rangers having been passed up by the Astros as the class of the division, a full rebuild is in the club’s future. Even if that was not the case, however, recently there have been some reports about Banister having trouble communicating with his players, suggesting that, perhaps, the Rangers would move on from him even if the results on the field had been better.
Banister ends his reign as the Rangers’ skipper with a record of 325-313.