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Jeff Banister reportedly to manage Rangers

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Texas Rangers have reportedly hired Pirates bench coach Jeff Banister to be their next manager.  Banister will be leaving an organization he's been with seemingly forever, starting with being drafted by the Pirates in 1986 and including his only major league at-bat, in which he got a hit.  He served in various minor league coaching and managerial capacities starting in the early 1990s, eventually becoming the bench coach in 2010.  He's been the only bench coach during Clint Hurdle's time at the helm.

Banister's hiring may have been influenced by Hurdle's brief but well documented stint with the Rangers as hitting coach.  It probably also represents an endorsement of the Pirates' current approach to running the major league team, which attempts to integrate analytics into the field strategy.  Hurdle has been very open to this approach and the Rangers presumably may be looking for the same thing from Banister.

Just at a guess, two internal candidates to replace Banister might be first base coach Rick Sofield and Bradenton manager Tom Prince.