BREAKING: Ron Washington resigns as Rangers manager, citing an “off-the-field personal matter”

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The Rangers have had an awful season, but we weren’t expecting this: Ron Washington has resigned as the team’s manager. Tim Bogar has been named interim manager.

Washington cited an “off-the-field personal matter” as the reason for his resignation. He said in a statement that the matter is “in no way related to the disappointing performance of the team this season.” The entire statement from Washington can be read below. The Rangers will hold a press conference at 3:30PM Central time.

The Rangers are 53-87 this season after a string of major injuries to major starts. Overall, however, Washington is 664-611 since taking the helm before the 2007 season. He has led the Rangers to two American League pennants and came within a strike of winning the 2011 World Series. The Rangers have won the AL West twice during his tenure and finished second four other times, making the playoffs three times in all.

In early 2010, it was revealed that Washington tested positive for cocaine in the first half of the 2009 season. There is no suggestion that the current personal matter is related to that in any way. We’ll just have to wait and see what has motivated his sudden resignation.

Here is the entire statement from Washington:

“Today, I have submitted my resignation from the job I love – managing the Rangers – in order to devote my full attention to addressing an off-the-field personal matter.   As painful as it is, stepping away from the game is what’s best for me and my family.

“This is in no way related to the disappointing performance of the team this season. We were already discussing 2015 and looking forward to getting the Rangers back to postseason contention.

“I deeply regret that I’ve let down the Rangers organization and our great fans. Over the past eight seasons, it’s been a privilege to be part of some of the best years in club history and I will always be grateful for the opportunities I’ve had here, and for the great management, players, and coaches who have made our time here a success. Thank you for respecting my privacy.”

 

UPDATE: The Rangers have not said the reason for Washington’s resignation, but Jon Daniels just said that it was not drug-related.

Giants CEO Larry Baer likely to be disciplined today

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Steve Berman of The Athletic — known to some as Bay Area Sports Guy – reported overnight that Major League Baseball is likely to hand down discipline to Giants CEO Larry Baer today. Possibly as early as this morning.

As you’ll recall, on March 1, Baer was caught on video having a loud, public argument with his wife during which he tried to rip a cell phone out of her hands, which caused her to tumble off of her chair and to the ground as she screamed “help me!” After a couple of false-start statements in which he seemed to dismiss and diminish the incident, Baer released a second solo statement, apologizing to his wife, children and the Giants organization and saying he would “do whatever it takes to make sure that I never behave in such an inappropriate manner again.”

On March 4, Baer stepped away from the Giants, taking “personal time” and relinquishing his CEO role, at least temporarily. Given Major League Baseball’s domestic violence policy, which does not require criminal charges to trigger discipline — and given how bad a look it would be for Major League Baseball not to take any action against Baer when it is certain that it would take action against a player in a similar scenario — it was only a matter of time before the league added to whatever discipline Baer and the Giants had decided to do on their own accord.

At the time of the incident I detailed Major League Baseball’s history of disciplining owners. As discussed in that post, it’s a tricky business, as owners don’t typically rely on salaries from their team and thus it’s hard to distinguish a suspension from a vacation. The examples cited there, however, at least begin to outline the tools at MLB’s disposal in taking action against Baer, and the league has no doubt been thinking about how to approach the matter for the past month.

We’ll see what they came up with some time today.