Rangers hire Maddux as pitching coach, Moore as advisor

Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports
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The Texas Rangers hired Mike Maddux as their new pitching coach and added former Kansas City Royals general manager Dayton Moore as a senior advisor in their baseball operations department.

Maddux is returning to Texas to be on new manager Bruce Bochy’s staff. Maddux was first the pitching coach for the Rangers from 2009-15, a span in which they made their only two World Series appearances. He spent the past five seasons with the St. Louis Cardinals, and has been part of 11 playoffs teams over his past 15 seasons as a pitching coach.

Moore spent the past 16 years with the Royals, where he was named GM in May 2006 and also served as president of baseball operations before getting fired in September. The Royals had three consecutive 100-loss seasons before Moore’s arrival. They won back-to-back American League pennants in 2014 and 2015, beating the New York Mets for the World Series title after the second one.

Moore will collaborate with Rangers general manager Chris Young, the former pitcher who finished his big league playing career with the Royals from 2015-17.

“There is no one more respected in our game. He rebuilt the Royals into a world champion,” Young said. “Dayton’s experiences as a longtime general manager, as well as his extensive background in scouting, will be a tremendous asset to me and the other leaders of our baseball group.”

Before joining the Royals, Moore spent 13 seasons with the Atlanta Braves in scouting and player development roles before becoming their director of player personnel in 2002.

Maddux was the second-longest tenured pitching coach in club history when he left the Rangers after the 2015 season and spent the following two years with Washington. Texas had four consecutive seasons with team ERAs under 4.00 from 2010-13. Before his arrival, they hadn’t had a team ERA under 4.00 since 1990, and haven’t had one since Maddux left.

After 15 seasons pitching in the big leagues, Maddux began his MLB coaching career with the Milwaukee Brewers from 2003-08.

Even before three-time World Series champion manager Bochy was hired last month, the Rangers had said co-pitching coaches Doug Mathis and Brendan Sagara wouldn’t return to their major league staff.

RHP Fairbanks, Rays agree to 3-year, $12 million contract

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Dave Nelson/USA TODAY Sports
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Reliever Pete Fairbanks and the Tampa Bay Rays avoided arbitration when they agreed Friday to a three-year, $12 million contract that could be worth up to $24.6 million over four seasons.

The deal includes salaries of $3,666,666 this year and $3,666,667 in each of the next two seasons. The Rays have a $7 million option for 2026 with a $1 million buyout.

His 2024 and 2025 salaries could increase by $300,000 each based on games finished in the previous season: $150,000 each for 35 and 40.

Tampa Bay’s option price could increase by up to $6 million, including $4 million for appearances: $1 million each for 60 and 70 in 2025; $500,000 for 125 from 2023-25 and $1 million each for 135, 150 and 165 from 2023-25. The option price could increase by $2 million for games finished in 2025: $500,000 each for 25, 30, 35 and 40.

Fairbanks also has a $500,000 award bonus for winning the Hoffman/Rivera reliever of the year award and $200,000 for finishing second or third.

The 29-year-old right-hander is 11-10 with a 2.98 ERA and 15 saves in 111 appearances, with all but two of the outings coming out of the bullpen since being acquired by the Rays from the Texas Rangers in July 2019.

Fairbanks was 0-0 with a 1.13 ERA in 24 appearances last year after beginning the season on the 60-day injured list with a right lat strain.

Fairbanks made his 2022 debut on July 17 and tied for the team lead with eight saves despite being sidelined more than three months. In addition, he is 0-0 with a 3.60 ERA in 12 career postseason appearances, all with Tampa Bay.

He had asked for a raise from $714,400 to $1.9 million when proposed arbitration salaries were exchanged Jan. 13, and the Rays had offered for $1.5 million.

Fairbanks’ agreement was announced two days after left-hander Jeffrey Springs agreed to a $31 million, four-year contract with Tampa Bay that could be worth $65.75 million over five seasons.

Tampa Bay remains scheduled for hearings with right-handers Jason Adam and Ryan Thompson, left-hander Colin Poche, third baseman Yandy Diaz and outfielder Harold Ramirez.