Arlington, Texas — Corey Ragsdale, who was named to the Rangers coaching staff on November 11 as Major League Field Coordinator, has been selected by Baseball America as the lone winner of the publication's 2019 Minor League Manager of the Year Award.
He is the first-ever Rangers staff member to be honored with the BA award, which began in 1989.
Ragsdale has spent 10 seasons in player development with the Rangers, doubling as both Field Coordinator and manager at High-A Down East in 2019, where he was selected Carolina League Manager of the Year for the 87-win Wood Ducks. Down East's 87 wins matched the second-highest total ever by a Texas farm team, as the club led all of Minor League Baseball in wins (50) and win percentage (.714) over the season's first half.
An Arkansas native, the 37-year-old Ragsdale was originally drafted by the Mets in 2001 and finished his playing career in the Texas organization in 2008-09. He will be in his first season on a Major League staff in 2020.
CLUB AGREES WITH THREE NON-ROSTER INVITES: The Rangers have agreed to terms with infielder/outfielder Rob Refsnyder, catcher Nick Ciuffo, and right-handed pitcher Wei-Chieh Huang on minor league contracts with invitations to 2020 Major League spring training camp.
Refsnyder, 28, combined for a .312/.374/.492/.866 slash line with 10 home runs and 46 RBI over 88 games in the minor leagues in 2019, spending almost the entire campaign with Triple-A Louisville in the Cincinnati organization. He owns a career .218 batting average with 4 home runs and 22 RBI in 166 games at the Major League level with New York-AL (2015-17), Toronto (2017), and Tampa Bay (2018). Born in South Korea, he attended both Laguna Hills (Calif.) High School and the University of Arizona before being selected in the fifth round of the 2012 June draft by the Yankees.
Ciuffo (pronounced SHOO-fo), 24, combined to bat .231 with 3 home runs and 20 RBI in the minor leagues in 2019, spending the bulk of the year with Durham (Rays Triple-A) and Louisville (Reds Triple-A) while also appearing in 3 Major League games for the Rays. He began the year in the Tampa Bay organization and was released on July 3 before signing with Cincinnati on July 9. The left-handed batter has seen brief stints with the Rays in each of the past two seasons, combining to bat .186 with one home run and 5 RBI in 19 games. He was originally selected by Tampa Bay in the first round (21st overall) of the 2013 June draft out of Lexington (SC) High School.
Huang, 26, became a free agent on December 2 when the Rangers did not tender him a 2020 contract offer prior to that night's 7:00 p.m. CST deadline. He posted a 3.18 ERA over 4 appearances with Texas in 2019, his first full season in the Rangers organization. The Taiwan native was originally acquired by Texas from the Arizona Diamondbacks in a trade on July 31, 2018.