Texas still had 10 games remaining in their regular season at the time of this move and still owe Bannister $950,000 for the 2019 season. Bench coach Don Wakamastu will be the interim manager for the remainder of the season, and kicked that run off with an 8-3, seven-inning win over the Mariners on Friday.
The 54-year-old Bannister won the American League Manager of the Year in his first season with the team in 2015, as he led the Rangers to their first of back-to-back AL West Division Championships. The manager could not be reached personally after the news on Friday, but he did release a statement through the Rangers saying "different styles and different people stomach things in a different way."
The manager went on to express his appreciation to the team and the fans, whom he got on his side when arriving after the 2014 season with the hashtag #NeverEverQuit. Most of the veterans in the Rangers clubhouse weren't necessarily surprised with the news, as the likes of Adrian Beltre and Shin-Soo Choo stated that it was sad, but it was time to go in a new direction.
And that's exactly what the Rangers will do after committing to a rebuilding process halfway through this season. They will finish up the final nine games of their season, and then shift their focus to a manager hunt come the off-season.