Never ever quit.
And, apparently, don‘t take any, um, crap.
Last year Rangers’ manager Jeff Banister went nose-to-nose with his Astros’ counterpart A.J. Hinch. Didn’t take him long to find a foil in 2016 as in the second game of the season he got into a shouting match with the Mariners’ rookie skipper and former Rangers’ executive Scott Servais.
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The Rangers’ bullpen was bombed in the 10-2 loss to Seattle. But the fiery Banister let it be known that he’ll again back his players. After new reliever and former Mariner Tom Wilhelmsen allowed two doubles and two homers – in only 10 pitches, no less – in an ugly six-run 8th inning, he decided to send a message of frustration by plunking Chris Iannetta.
Servais took exception, Wilhelmsen was ejected and the managers wound up screaming at each other and finger pointing in their general directions.
Said Banister, “Emotions got high.”
Added Wilhelmsen, “I’m not ever going to let them get too comfortable.”
Bottom line: Teams may beat the Rangers. But they’re not going to relinquish their AL West crown by rolling over. Messages will be sent. And, yes, the manager will be on the front lines.
A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.