Rangers to discuss contract extension for Ron Washington

Posted Thursday, Oct. 03, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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On the agenda this off-season for general manager Jon Daniels is making sure that manager Ron Washington doesn’t go into next season as a lame duck.

Daniels said Thursday that he plans to discuss with ownership and other club officials an extension for Washington, who has led the Texas Rangers to four consecutive 90-win seasons and has the most managerial wins in franchise history.

“That would be my preference,” Daniels said. “I’ve been as supportive as anybody, and we’re going to handle that behind the scenes. Wash and I haven’t talked about it yet. I haven’t talked to ownership about it yet. We will have that conversation internally.”

Washington has received heavy criticism for his in-game decision-making, something that Daniels said probably happens with 90 percent of the managers in the game. Seldom, though, does Daniels remember Washington receiving praise for the good he does.

Daniels offered a strong argument in defense of Washington as the two met with the local media to dissect the 2013 season and look ahead to 2014.

“I think it’s easy to sit back and pick it apart,” Daniels said. “Wash has a hard job. It is a hard job. These decisions happen quick. He already said, ‘Do we make mistakes? We all do.’ He has a hard job, and I think he’s pretty good at it.”

Darvish’s injury

Right-hander Yu Darvish received an injection of anti-inflammatories for a nerve issue in his back that hampered him the final six weeks of the season.

Darvish had acknowledged down the stretch that he was dealing with an unspecified injury, which led to weakness in his legs and occasional command issues. The Rangers will check on Darvish in November, and they expect him to be at full strength by the start of spring training.

“He wanted to take the ball every five days,” Jon Daniels said. “I commend him for that. We didn’t want to talk about it publicly. He was fighting through it as a lot of guys are fighting through this time of the year.”

The Darvish injury is not similar to the back woes of left-hander Matt Harrison. An MRI on Darvish showed only nerve inflammation, while Harrison had a herniated disk that required surgery.

The Rangers expect Harrison, who in September had surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome on his non-throwing side, to be ready to go for spring training and be a part of the 2014 rotation.

No decision has been made on Alexi Ogando’s role next year. The right-hander opened 2013 in the rotation but spent three different stints on the disabled list. He returned as a reliever, but finished the year in the rotation.

More time for Profar

The Rangers aren’t opposed to having Jurickson Profar fill the same role he filled this season as a utility infielder who played at least four times a week, but Jon Daniels said that in a perfect world, Profar would play every day.

“In an ideal situation, he would not be in that role,” Daniels said. “Are we confident he can handle it better next year? Yeah. A lot of that is going to depend on what we do with the club this winter, and we’re a long way from being able to answer that.”

The desire to get Profar regular at-bats could lead to dangling second baseman Ian Kinsler in trades this off-season. Kinsler is a three-time All-Star who hit .277 with 13 homers and 72 RBIs this season, and he is owed $62 million over the next four seasons.

Jeff Wilson, 817-390-7760 Twitter: @JeffWilson

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