Texas Rangers Co-Chairman Ray Davis Plans for Most of Furloughed Employees to Return January 1
Editor's Note: This story has been updated since originally published.
Texas Rangers co-chairman and managing partner Ray Davis plans for most of the furloughed employees to return by January 1, depending on the how circumstances play out regarding the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The general plan is to bring back most of the furloughed employees and restore the salaries January 1," Davis said in a conference call with local reporters. "All of that could change based on the pandemic. Obviously, if we find out we can’t have fans in 2021, I don’t need people sitting here selling tickets, as an example. But the plan and the hope that most everybody comes back January 1.”
The 2020 season did not play out as the Rangers initially envisioned. With the opening of a brand new ballpark and a revamped starting rotation, Rangers' ownership expected Globe Life Field, their brand new home, to be filled with paying customers cheering their team toward a playoff spot.
Instead, the COVID-19 pandemic kept the stadium empty and Murphy's law kicked in for the Texas Rangers: everything that could go wrong, went wrong.
"All I can say for this year is I am embarrassed," Davis said. "I am embarrassed for our team. I am embarrassed for our fans and I wish it had turned out a lot differently. The fact is we have to correct what we didn’t do this year and make it better. That’s what are plan is over the next one or two years."
With no paying customers buying tickets or ballpark merchandise, the Rangers experienced financial loss that forced them to cut salaries of employees, starting at the top. Eventually, Davis made the tough decision to furlough roughly 12 percent of his employees.
The announcement of the potential return of furloughed employees coincides with the excitement of a Rangers team that will be younger in 2021. A younger, inexperienced team generally means there will be hardships, but Davis is excited about what he saw near the end of the 2020 season.
"I can’t speak for our fan base. All I know is how excited I got watching the young guys play this year," Davis said. "It’s really a high quality of baseball and a fun quality of baseball I think the fans, if they want to see future superstars who are young in their careers, it’s time to come watch them play."
In regards to his president of baseball operations and general manager, Davis has full faith that Jon Daniels is the man for the job moving forward.
"I look at us making the playoffs I think five out of the last 10 years," Davis said. "Jon has demonstrated that he and his team can put together winning ball teams. If you thought about going out and replacing him, all you have is a question mark. We have a known entity. We have a group of guys that know how to get it done and I think they are going to get it done again."
Regarding his own future with the club, Ray Davis unequivocally put any questions to rest.
"As long as the good Lord keeps me on the Earth, I'll be here," Davis said. "I have no plans at all to sell the team."