Rangers dismiss hitting, bench coaches after 102-loss season

MLB

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP)The Texas Rangers have dismissed hitting coach Luis Ortiz and bench coach Don Wakamatsu after a 102-loss season.

Two days after the season ended with the Rangers being shut out for a majors-high 15th time, the team said Tuesday that Ortiz and Wakamatsu would not return to manager Chris Woodward’s staff in 2022.

The status of assistant hitting coach Callix Crabbe and Alex Burg, the team’s coordinator of run production, will be determined by the new hitting coach. Crabbe and Burg were given permission to seek other employment opportunities.

Ortiz spent three seasons with Texas, which used a club-record 26 rookies and was 29th in the majors this year with a .232 team batting average after matching a Rangers-low .217 in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season. They scored an AL-low 625 runs, their fewest in a full 162-game season since 1994.

Wakamatsu, the former Seattle manager and bench coach for Kansas City when the Royals won the 2015 World Series, finished the fourth season of his second stint with the Rangers while working with each of the team’s last four managers. He was also on the staff from 2003-06.

The rest of Woodward’s staff is expected to return in 2022: co-pitching coaches Doug Mathis and Brendan Sagara, third base coach Tony Beasley, first base coach/field coordinator Corey Ragsdale, catching coach Bobby Wilson, and run prevention coordinator Brett Hayes. But some of their specific roles and responsibilities could change before next season.

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