Ron Washington submitted his resignation as manager of the Texas Rangers, shocking players and fans while offering little explanation for the departure.
Washington submitted his resignation on Friday, leaving as one of the winningest coaches in the team’s history.
“Today, I have submitted my resignation from the job I love — managing the Rangers — in order to devote my full attention to addressing an off-the-field personal matter,” Washington said in a statement. “As painful as it is, stepping away from the game is what’s best for me and my family.”
It has been a difficult season for Ron Washington and the Texas Rangers. They have the worst record in baseball at 53-88 and are 33 1/2 games back in the AL West. On Friday, the team lost 7-5 to the Seattle Mariners, their seventh straight defeat.
Washington said his departure had nothing to do with the difficult season, however.
“This is in no way related to the disappointing performance of the team this season,” Washington said in the statement. “We were already discussing 2015 and looking forward to getting the Rangers back to postseason contention.”
He continued, “I deeply regret that I’ve let down the Rangers organization and our great fans. Over the past eight seasons, it’s been a privilege to be part of some of the best years in club history, and I will always be grateful for the opportunities I’ve had here, and for the great management, players and coaches who have made our time here a success.”
General manager Jon Daniels would not get into specifics, but did say Washington’s resignation was “not drug-related.” Washington tested positive for cocaine in 2009 and has been subject to random drug testing since then. After his initial failed test, Washington offered to resign, but the team stuck by him and in 2012 offered a two-year suspension.
Daniels only said the departure was an off-the-field matter, and took his own responsibility for the team’s failures this season.
“This has been a difficult season for the team for a variety of reasons,” Daniels said. “But it was very clear throughout the organization, both publicly and privately with Ron he was coming back. We were planning on him coming back as our manager for 2015. The bottom line is you don’t have a season like we had without a number of things going wrong. First and foremost with decisions that I’ve made, and that’s where the accountability counts. And that’s not what this decision or outcome is about. It’s not an on-field matter.”
But Ron Washington left the door open for a possible return to the Texas Rangers. In a text message to USA Today Sports, he said, “I’ll be back! Need some time!”