Texas Rangers Tickets
Formed in 1961 as the Washington Senators, the Texas Rangers are a professional baseball team hailing from Arlington. A major league franchise, the Rangers are members of the American League's West Division in the MLB. The Rangers are one of eight teams who have never won the World Series, though they appeared in back to back Fall Classics in 2010 and 2011. The Rangers have been on a role in recent years and won their fifth division title during the 2015 season. They will want to improve on their record from that season and will look to go all the way to the World Series again. To watch the team's game live, get Texas Rangers tickets today.
Formation and Early Years as the Washington Senators
The MLB decided to award expansion franchises to Washington and Los Angeles in 1960, after the Washington Senators franchise moved to Minnesota and became the Minnesota Twins. The new Washington franchise was again called the Senators, but was still an expansion franchise since the Twins owned the previous Senators' records. The new Senators played their first season in 1961.
The franchise had a pretty bad time in the MLB during the early years of its existence. They would end up losing an average of ninety games per season before ownership changes began taking place. The franchise was eventually bought by Bob Short, under whose management the team registered their first and only winning season in Washington.
The Senators started getting smaller crowds, more so because the Baltimore Orioles, who were only 45 miles northeast, won two World Series out of four appearances between 1966 and 1971. As crowd sizes dwindled, Bob Short threatened not to renew the stadium lease and move the franchise elsewhere.
Move to Arlington
Short was open to the idea of moving his franchise to Arlington, especially after listening to the pitch of Arlington mayor Tom Vandergriff. Arlington also had Turnpike Stadium, which had been built for a Minor League team, but had been built according to Major League specifications. The stadium would only need minor renovations to ensure it could cater to a Major League crowd.
After Arlington mayor offered to pay a multi-million dollar down payment, Short decided to move the franchise to the city. In 1971, the other American League owners voted whether to allow the franchise to shift; the motion was passed with a 10-2 vote and the team would play the 1972 MLB season in Arlington.
Understandably, the fans of the Senators were livid. Ugly scenes unfolded at the team's last home game, as people stormed the pitch and took away souvenirs, including the first base. The umpire was forced to forfeit the game in favor of the New York Yankees.
Turnpike Stadium was renovated during the off season and was rechristened Arlington Stadium at the start of the 1972 season. The ownership also announced that the franchise would be renamed the Texas Rangers.
The Rangers played their first game on 15th April, 1972 - they lost 1-0 to the California Angels. However, the team recorded its first win the very next day as they defeated the same opponents 5-1.
Over time the Rangers started getting into their stride. In 1974, they finished second in the AL, only behind that year's World Series champions, the Oakland Athletics. The Rangers kept on improving and posted winning seasons from 1977-1979. In 1981, the team came close to reaching the playoffs, but lost out to the Oakland Athletics by a half game. The Rangers did not post another winning season for the next five seasons.
Bobby Valentine Years
Bobby Valentine was appointed as the Rangers' manager in 1985. He would go on to be their longest serving manager and left the club in 1992. Valentine inherited a supremely talented bunch of rookies during his tenure. These included Edwin Correa, Bobby Witz, Pete Incaviglia, Ruben Sierra and Mitch Williams.
Valentine made the Rangers a competitive team once again, but could never lead the team to a higher position than second in the American League. As a result, he was sacked in 1992.
First Taste of Success (1995 - 1999)
Following the departure of Valentine, Kevin Kennedy was appointed as the team's manager in 1993. He led the team for two years and kept them in playoff contention, but could never take the team all the way. The Rangers could have won their first Division title in 1994, had that season not been canceled due to the infamous players' strike.
In 1995, Johnny Oates was appointed as the new Rangers' manager. This appointment signaled a shift in the team's fortunes and he helped the franchise win their first ever Division championship. The Rangers progressed to the playoffs for the first time since they had moved to Texas, but lost to the Yankees in the first round. This Rangers team featured several talented players including Will Clark, Rusty Greer, Ivan Rodriguez, Mark McLemore and Dean Palmer.
Oates continued to lead the team to the playoffs in the next few seasons, and helped them win back to back division titles in 1998 and 1999. Unfortunately, the Rangers failed to progress beyond the first round of the playoffs, losing out to the Yankees each time.
The 1999 team was the last Rangers team to reach the playoffs for a decade.
Following the success of the Oates era, the Rangers suffered from a period of mediocrity. Despite signing star players like Alex Rodriguez, the team failed to reach the playoffs and their baseball was average at best. Managers came and went but the team's fortunes did not change.
By the end of this spell, the franchise was almost bankrupt and only saved when a new ownership took over.
Second Era of Success (2010 - 2015)
Having already enjoyed success during the late 90s, the Rangers fans were desperate for more. The new ownership was ambitious and acquired management and players who they felt could help the team become contenders.
Back to Back World Series Appearances (2010, 2011)
Expectations were high in 2010, as the Rangers management felt they could win their Division that year. With players like Vladimir Guerrero, Colby Lewis and Rich Harden coming in, the team looked strong enough to compete for the Division. As it turned out, the Rangers comfortably won their fourth American League West Division championship with a 90-72 record and advanced to the playoffs for the first time in more than a decade.
During the first round of the playoffs, the Rangers faced the Tampa Bay Rays. They defeated the Rays 3-2 and registered the first playoff series victory in the franchise's history. The Rangers were up against the New York Yankees in the AL Championship Series. The Yankees were not only defending World Series Champions but also the team which had eliminated the Rangers from the playoffs three times in the late 90s; so revenge was definitely on the cards.
The Rangers managed to beat the Yankees in six games and won their first AL pennant in history. The ecstatic crowd in the stadium roared their approval as the Rangers celebrated reaching the World Series.
The San Francisco Giants awaited the Rangers in the World Series. The Giants had young, hungry pitchers, who caused all sorts of problems for the Rangers' offense. The Rangers eventually lost 4-1, but could hold their heads up high for their remarkable achievement.
Given their strong run in the 2010 season, it was hardly surprising that expectations were once again high in 2011. The Rangers met those expectations by winning their second straight Division title and progressed to the playoffs.
During the regular season, the team set a franchise record for best overall record, after finishing 96-66. They posted a winning percentage of .592 and also had a record breaking home attendance.
The Rangers defeated the Detroit Tigers in six games to win their second consecutive American League pennant and book a place in the 2011 World Series. The St. Louis Cardinals awaited the team this time, and after a close fought series, the Cardinals emerged victorious in game seven of the Series. The Rangers had been agonizingly close during game six of the series and were twice only one strike away from being world champions.
The Rangers were once again a strong side during the 2012 season and reached the playoffs for a third consecutive year via the wildcard slot. However they lost to the Baltimore Orioles in the wildcard game.
The team failed to reach the post season in 2013 and 2014 and started off 2015 on a poor note as well. However, with the addition of pitcher Cole Hamels, the team underwent a mid-season rejuvenation and went on to win its sixth division title in franchise history. The team reached the playoffs after two seasons but disappointingly lost 3-2 to the Toronto Blue Jays in the Division Series.
- The Rangers have produced and fielded several highly talented players who have gone on to set on franchise and MLB records.
- Josh Hamilton holds the franchise record for the highest batting average. He posted a .359 average during the 2010 season.
- Baseball striking legend Alex Rodriguez holds the record for scoring the highest number of home runs in one season. He hit 57 during the 2002 season.
- Bump Willis set the franchise record for most stolen bases during the 1978 season. He stole 52 bases over the course of the season.
- In 1989, Rubin Sierra set the franchise record for most triples - 18.
- Michael Young set the franchise record for most hits during the 2005 season. He posted 221 hits during the season.
Globe Life Park
The Rangers' home has been the Globe Life Park in Arlington since 1994. The ballpark replaced Arlington Stadium in 1994 and immediately brought good fortune to the team. After shifting to the new stadium, the team went on to win their first Division championship in 1996 and became playoff regulars for the next few seasons.
Constructed at a cost of $191 million dollars, the ballpark's official capacity is 48,114. However, the record attendance for the stadium was set during game three of the World Series in 2010, when 52,419 screaming fans cheered on the Rangers and the Giants.
The Rangers will be hoping the ballpark can work its magic once again, as they look to improve on their showing from the 2015 season. The team reached the playoffs in 2015 but was not able to progress beyond the Division Series; this season they will be hoping to go past that stage and perhaps make another World Series appearance. To watch the Texas Rangers live in action, get Texas Rangers tickets and watch them take on the best teams in the MLB.