The most successful manager in the history of the Texas Rangers, Ron Washington, has stepped down from his role which he has held since 2007, citing a personal matter as the reason behind the decision, although it didn’t stop the speculation from whirling through the Internet and media.
The clubhouse has simply said it has nothing to do with drugs. As you might remember, Washington tested positive for Cocaine in 2009. He offered to resign, begging for forgiveness, but the Rangers stuck by him and signed him on a two-year deal, going into 2012.
There just might be the reason of the Rangers falling from their perch in the AL West. Washington led them to a record streak of five consecutive winnings seasons from 2009 to 2013, which included making the playoffs four years in a row (2010-2013) and reaching the World Series in 2010 and 2011, losing to the San Francisco Giants and St. Louis Cardinals.
This season hasn’t bee that good, not even close. The Rangers have lost too much talent over the last few years – mainly Nelson Cruz and Josh Hamilton. It makes repeated success quite a difficult thing to find. It means time to rebuild and develop talent. The Rangers are 53-88, the worst record in Baseball. Washington and the club insist that his decision had nothing to do with the record.
The Rangers have used 63 players so far this season, more than anyone else. Of the 63, 40 have been pitchers. That’s how bad their injury crisis has been.
For now, all that’s been let out, at least officially, is that this is an off-the-field matter Washington had to take care of. Not about some alleged drug problem or not about Washington being disillusioned with managing the team, being successful for so long and suddenly hitting a rough patch. According to the club, Washington was already deeply invested in preparing for the 2015 season.
For those claiming that a Baseball manager has no effect on his team, next season might be an excellent way to find out. Some think Washington will return by then, but for now, he’s off the books, and the Rangers will play with a different person calling the shots for the first time since 2006.