Publish date:

Rangers History Today: The End of The Jeff Banister Era

The Texas Rangers made a managerial change on this day, dismissing a skipper that led them to a pair of division titles.

On this date in Texas Rangers history, the club dismissed manager Jeff Banister.

The moment came on September 21, 2018, as the Rangers were stumbling toward a 67-win season. By the time the Rangers released Banister, the Rangers were 64-88. Don Wakamatsu would take over for the remainder of the season, and the Rangers went 3-7 in their final 10 games.

Banister came to the Rangers for the 2015 season, becoming the ultimate replacement to Ron Washington, who had resigned toward the end of the 2014 season.

Banister, a native of La Marque, Texas, played in just one Major League game, which was on July 23, 1991, and saw Banister record a hit. But that was a miracle unto itself. He survived bone cancer in high school, which nearly resulted in the amputation of one of his legs. He also broke three vertebrae in his neck during a home-plate collision while playing at Lee College. After spending 10 days paralyzed and recovering, he became a junior college All-American and played for the Houston Cougars.

After retiring, Banister became a long-time assistant coach in the Minor and Major Leagues, spending nearly 20 years with the Pittsburgh Pirates organization, the team that took him in as a player. He spent time as a minor league manager and worked his way up to bench coach for the Pirates, second-in-command to former Rangers hitting coach Clint Hurdle, from 2010-14.

Recommended Articles

Texas Rangers / 2011 World Series / Elvis Andrus / Ian Kinsler

Rangers History Today: Evening The Score in 2011 World Series

The Texas Rangers fought until the end, and ended up evening the 2011 World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals at one game apiece.

Javier Baez / Trevor Story / Carlos Correa / Corey Seager / Marcus Semien

Hot Stove: Rangers 'Expected To Be Aggressive' With Marquee Free Agent Shortstops

Things are heating up with the Texas Rangers and the marquee class of free agent shortstops.

Oct 15, 2021; Houston, Texas, USA; General view of batting practice baseballs before game one of the 2021 ALCS between the Houston Astros and the Boston Red Sox at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

MLB Reportedly Discussing New Streaming Service for 2023

The service would allow fans that have 'cut the cord' to watch their team's home games in-market without cable.

The Rangers finally gave him his first MLB managerial job. And, in his first two seasons, Banister led the Rangers to American League West titles. In 2015, the Rangers won 88 games and played one of the most eventful playoff series in team history, a 3-2 loss in the American League Division Series to the Toronto Blue Jays. In 2016, the Rangers won an AL-high 95 games, another division title, but were swept by the Blue Jays in the ALDS.

After those two seasons, the Rangers’ descent was quick. Despite opening 2017 with the 6th-highest payroll in baseball, the Rangers won just 78 games. Then in 2018, things came off the rails, leading to Banister’s dismissal.

More From SI's Inside The Rangers:

Are we missing a moment from this day in Texas Rangers history? We’re happy to add it. Hit us up on Twitter @PostinsPostcard and let us know what to add. 

Be Part Of The Conversation On The NEW Inside The Rangers Fan Forum. Sign Up Today!

Make Sure To Like 'Inside The Rangers' on Facebook