Jon Daniels: “Probably Unlikely” That More Pirates Personnel Follows Banister to Texas

Texas Rangers General Manager Jon Daniels held a conference call this evening for members of the Texas and Pittsburgh media, making the hiring of Jeff Banister official. Most of the conference call discussed the hiring process, and general things that led the Rangers to select Banister as their new manager. One key bit of information that came up for the Pirates involved whether the Rangers would take anyone from the Pittsburgh organization to fill out Banister’s staff in Texas.

Daniels said that this scenario was “probably unlikely”, citing his respect for the Pirates and not wanting to put them in a bad spot. Daniels said that he had been in the same spot before. In fact, that same spot took place a few years ago when the Pirates hired Clint Hurdle from the Rangers. Hurdle didn’t bring anyone over from the Rangers when making the move.

Since Hurdle came from Texas, and since Banister comes to Texas after working with Hurdle, there were a lot of questions wondering if the Rangers were looking for a clone of Hurdle. Daniels was quick to point out that Banister was “his own man”, and not the same as Hurdle. However, he noted that there were things Banister would probably bring over from the Pirates’ organization, with one key thing being the co-dependent relationship between scouting, development, and the big league club.

Daniels was also asked about the way the Pirates have been known to use advanced analytics, and noted that this is an area where the Rangers can probably get better.

“You realize there are some things you do really well in these interview processes, and then you realize there are areas where we need to get better,” Daniels said. “There might be a perception because of my background, some of the folks in the front office, etc, that we’re an analytics-heavy group. What was illustrated to me throughout this, is we’re probably below average in that department.”

He noted that the amount of time and energy the Rangers spent on analytics was probably behind other clubs, and that they weren’t going to try and copy anyone, but would find the best mix for them.

Daniels noted that Banister and Hurdle probably learned from each other in their time working together. It’s hard to say who had the idea to incorporate more analytics on the field, or who put the focus on linking the scouting and development with the big league club. Either way, it appears Banister will be using those strategies in Texas.

Tim started Pirates Prospects in 2009 from his home in Virginia, which was 40 minutes from where Pedro Alvarez made his pro debut in Lynchburg. That year, the Lynchburg Hillcats won the Carolina League championship, and Pirates Prospects was born from Tim's reporting along the way. The site has grown over the years to include many more writers, and Tim has gone on to become a credentialed MLB reporter, producing Pirates Prospects each year, and will publish his 11th Prospect Guide this offseason. He has also served as the Pittsburgh Pirates correspondent for Baseball America since 2019. Behind the scenes, Tim is an avid music lover, and most of the money he gets paid to run this site goes to vinyl records.

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On another thread I already told several people that Mike Maddux would stay. He told Jon Daniels he would ” like to stay “, and Daniels said he likely would.

Pie Rat

Hurdle has said himself that it took him a couple years to buy into advanced analytics. It makes Hurdle interesting in that in so many ways he’s old school, but he was also willing to get better in this area. I would think Banister was more the brainchild behind analytics, he will also help the Texas organization. I hope our minor league system doesn’t suffer.

Joe Sweetnich

Congrats to Bannie!

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