Texas hopes Beasley can be 'stabilizing force' in clubhouse

Interim manager begins tenure with a win after Woodward is dismissed

August 16th, 2022

ARLINGTON -- You never come to the ballpark expecting the kind of conversations the Rangers clubhouse had on Monday afternoon,  explained while standing in front of his locker ahead of the series-opening matchup against the A’s at Globe Life Field.

That same sentiment of surprise was echoed throughout the clubhouse after the Rangers dismissed manager Chris Woodward and appointed third-base coach Tony Beasley as the interim manager for the rest of the 2022 season.

Despite the Rangers' 51-63 record at the time of the dismissal, the consensus surrounding players was that it was unexpected for them as much as anybody else.

“Personally, I was a little surprised with the timing,” said first baseman Nathaniel Lowe. “There’s a lot of baseball left in this season, and this team has a lot of fight left in it. But it’s not up to us. We’re the employees and the brass thought that this was a change that was necessary.”

Shortstop has noted multiple times in the past that Woodward was one of the reasons he decided to sign with the Rangers as a free agent in the offseason. The two first crossed paths from 2016-17 with the Dodgers, when Woodward was third-base coach in L.A.

Even though Seager and Woodward have a close relationship, the shortstop didn’t hesitate to point out that, at the end of the day, his only job is to go out and play baseball, regardless of who’s in the dugout.

“Obviously, he was a really important person in my career and in my life,” Seager said. “He was around me at a really pivotal point in my career and I don't have anything bad to say about Woody. [I have the] utmost respect for him, and it's one of the things where I just wish we could have played a little better and maybe the outcome would be different.”

While the shock of Woodward’s dismissal percolated through the team, it was clear that the players also believe in Beasley's ability to lead the club through the rest of 2022.

The first game of the Beasley era was a 2-1 win over Oakland, but the result didn’t matter as much as the thought of the “stabilizing force” he could be during a transitional period for the Rangers.

“He's going to be the same person, you know?” Semien said of Beasley. “Yes, he has a new title, and there's some different responsibilities that he will have, but in terms of his attitude, and his willingness to do whatever he can for us, I'm excited for him. I told him immediately that I was very happy for him. I know it's kind of a weird day for him, bittersweet, but this is something that he's built to do. I've been watching him, even when I was in Oakland, and just seeing how he did his job, I said he'd be a good manager one day, and now he’s here.”

Beasley recognizes the task ahead of him. He wants to make sure that the Rangers are playing a “good brand of baseball” under his watch, but he isn’t ignorant to the fact that he’s been dealt the same cards Woodward had when it comes to roster construction.

“Obviously, we don’t always control the wins and losses,” Beasley said. “I would love to see us go on a run here and make it interesting. That would be ideal, and I think we have the capability of doing that. We've got to play the brand of baseball that gives us that chance. I just want to see the players enjoy the game, embrace the culture and the clubhouse embracing each other. Being a Texas Ranger should be something special.

“I believe in the guys in the clubhouse," Beasley added. "Our job as coaches and my job [as manager] is to make sure we get the most out of that. That's what's important.”

Two things were made clear by general manager Chris Young and president of baseball operations Jon Daniels following Woodward’s dismissal: a change in both preparation and leadership style is vital to creating a championship culture within the organization.

If that immediately comes from Beasley, it will play out across the remaining 47 games, but both the players and the front office trust in his ability to lead them through the rest of 2022 and hopefully close things out on a positive note.

“I think winning is fun, so I think whatever it takes for us to go out there and win is definitely going to help ... you know, it’s up to us to compete, regardless of who’s in charge,” Lowe said.