Monday, November 20, 2006
Rangers hire Pettis as first-base coach, complete staff
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Five-time Gold Glove outfielder Gary Pettis has been hired to be the Texas Rangers' first-base coach, completing first-time manager Ron Washington's staff.
Pettis' hiring was announced Monday when the Rangers for the first time formally named Washington's staff. The staff includes former major-league manager Art Howe, who was hired as bench coach two weeks ago.
Don Wakamatsu, the bench coach the past four seasons and a finalist for the managerial job, will be the third-base coach and catching instructor. Hitting coach Rudy Jaramillo, pitching coach Mark Connor and bullpen coach Dom Chiti also return, in their same roles.
Third-base coach Steve Smith's contract wasn't renewed by the Rangers. First-base coach Bobby Jones returned to the minors for his third stint as the organization's Triple-A manager in Oklahoma.
Washington replaced Buck Showalter, who was fired after the Rangers went 80-82 and missed the playoffs for the seventh straight season.
Pettis, a minor-league hitting instructor in Milwaukee's organization the past two seasons, will also be the outfield and base-running instructor for the Rangers. He was previously the first-base coach and outfield coach for the New York Mets (2003-04) and Chicago White Sox (2001-02).
Pettis was a .236 career hitter in 11 major-league seasons (1982-92) as a player for California, Detroit, Texas and San Diego. With the Rangers from 1990-91, Pettis had 67 of his 354 career stolen bases.
Howe, hired last month by the Philadelphia Phillies to be Charlie Manuel's third-base coach and infield instructor, was a major-league manager for 14 seasons. Besides Oakland (1996-2002), where Washington was on his staff the entire time, Howe managed the Houston Astros (1989-93) and Mets (2003-04).
This is Howe's second stint as a Texas assistant. He was on Bobby Valentine's staff with the Rangers from 1985-88.