When Jeff Banister was offered his first managerial job in October 2014, he told Texas Rangers general manager Jon Daniels flipping through the contract was unnecessary.
It was the first multiyear deal of his career and Banister was so stoked to be fulfilling a dream that perusing the details seemed beside the point.
The Rangers announced Friday that they have given Banister a raise and added another year to his contract in December. The new deal goes through the 2018 season, with a club option in 2019.
It’s something that ownership and all of us wanted to do.
Rangers GM Jon Daniels
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“It’s a reflection on the body of work after one year and our strong feelings for Jeff and his leadership,” Daniels said. “We wanted to recognize that [Banister’s] first season went as well as we could have hoped. It has been a tremendous partnership early on and a relationship I expect to go a lot longer than any contract.”
The club, including co-owner Ray Davis, wanted to reciprocate “that faith he had shown in us and the confidence and trust that he had shown in us and we wanted to do the same,” Daniels said.
Rangers manager Jeff Banister was given a raise and given an extra year on his contract that takes him through 2018 with a club option in 2019.
The news elicited “elation,” Banister said. “More than anything else, I’m proud of the relationship and partnership we’ve built and continue to grow. I’m happy for my family. I love the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Our transition to being part of the community has been tremendous. It’s a place we’ve grown to love.”
Yu Darivsh threw 25 pitches on flat ground Friday, the first workout for pitchers and catchers.
Position players, many of whom are already in camp, report Thursday.
Darvish, who is returning from Tommy John surgery a year ago, threw five to six changeups, catcher Chris Gimenez said.
“I was just very impressed,” Gimenez said. “I felt like he was back spinning the ball very well on all of his fastballs.”
Darvish struggled with his changeup command, Gimenez said, but dismissed it as normal rust after the long layoff.
“I was impressed with his ability to keep the ball down. He even said he wasn’t even trying to throw hard and the ball was just jumping out of his hand. It’s good to see,” he said. “He was nice and easy and free and that’s good to see. I know he’s excited to be back out there.”
Rangers great Michael Young will help usher in the club’s Swing For The Seats challenge Saturday at Globe Life Park.
Young will take the first at-bat that will allow full or half-season ticket holders three swings to homer against a pitching machine to win free tickets in 2016.
The event is from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and is open to fans who place a 25 percent deposit on a full or half season ticket plan.
A homer gives the fan free tickets (up to $10,000).
Fans should park in Lot B and enter through the Hall of Fame entrance on Randol Mill Road.
Rangers public address announcer Chuck Morgan will announce the contest. For more details, visit texasrangers.com/