ARLINGTON -- Chris Young is no stranger to being a fan of the Texas Rangers.
The Rangers’ general manager, Young was born and raised in Dallas and has long since endured the highs and lows associated with the organization. Now, he leads the ballclub.
“Growing up here, I was a proud Ranger fan,” Young explained in his postseason press conference. “I remember the pain of losing seasons and spending the month of October watching other teams compete in the playoffs, wondering when that's going to be us. I share [fans'] frustrations and I'm looking forward to the coming years when you're watching us play in the month of October.”
The first step towards getting the Rangers back into the postseason picture is hiring a new manager after the dismissal of Chris Woodward back in August after three and a half seasons at the helm.
Rangers’ record under Woodward
2019: 78-84 (.481), 3rd in AL West
2020: 22-38 (.367), 5th
2021: 60-102 (.370), 5th
2022: 51-63 (.447), 3rd
So what does Young envision being the ideal manager for the Rangers going forward?
“It's the ability to get the best out of your team to create an environment that gets the best out of each individual for the collective group,” Young said. “That's what it really comes down to.”
Easier said than done.
Young said the front office is interviewing interim manager Tony Beasley on Friday as it continues evaluating the season. He's the only internal candidate for the position after finishing 17-31 over the final stretch of the season.
“I think [Beasley] did a tremendous job,” Young said. “He inherited a difficult situation with a midseason change. We acknowledged that, when we made the move, we felt like Tony was the right person at the time to help us really reestablish some things that we were missing. He, in my opinion, succeeded in those areas. I said publicly at the time, we weren't going to judge him solely on his win-loss record or how the team played.
“We knew that we had a young group coming and that they were going to have to get exposure at the big league level. There may be some growing pains that come with that. But in terms of what we were looking for with our culture, the management of the staff, those types of things, I thought he did a tremendous job.”
Young said he expects to have the process wrapped up within the next three to four weeks, but it will fully depend on access as the postseason unfolds and candidates are available for interviewing. When asked about Bruce Bochy -- who managed Young with the Padres in 2006 -- specifically, Young said he would rather not comment on specific prospective hires.
“I think we're narrowing that [list of external candidates] down right now,” Young said. “We started with a large master list and we're narrowing that as we speak. But that’s probably the extent to which I feel comfortable sharing information on that at this point.”
It’s worth noting that the last two Rangers managers in Woodward and Jeff Bannister were both first-time big league managers. They both also combined for six straight losing seasons, despite Bannister being named American League Manager of the Year in 2015. He won back-to-back AL West titles in ‘15-16.
Young said the front office is not looking in particular for somebody with prior big league managerial experience, though it would be a plus.
“It's always great to have wisdom around you, whether it's specific to somebody who's done the exact job or somebody who's been in the industry, in the game, for a long time,” Young said. “We will look to continue to upgrade and improve in all areas whether it's the front office, the coaching staff or on-field group. We're always looking to improve and wisdom is a part of improving.
“We will consider both [first-time managers] and those with previous experience. There are very good big league managers right now that were first-time big league managers at one point. So we're not going to put limits on who we consider. We're looking for the right person to help the Texas Rangers win in 2023 and beyond.”