LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - The annual Texas Rangers Winter Caravan made a stop in Lubbock Tuesday afternoon as part of the First Pitch Luncheon at the Lubbock Memorial Civic Center. Pitcher Connor Sadzeck, Outfielder Willie Calhoun and Field Reporter and Rangers Insider Host Emily Jones were in town to meet and greet with fans.
Back in November, Chris Woodward was named the new Manager of the Texas Rangers. He previously was the Los Angeles Dodgers third base coach. The Rangers went 67-95 last season finishing last in the American league East and Sadzeck says a new Manager has brought new life into the Rangers.
“It’s actually been great so far. Woodie (Woodward) has been very vocal and reached out to us right from the beginning. This past week we had a little camp. They’ll lay the groundwork going into Spring Training. I think we are heading in a good direction. We have a lot of young guys and we have a young manager and I think it’s all going to be beneficial for everyone.”
The 24 year old Calhoun was tabbed the Rangers top prospect by Baseball America prior to 2018. He’s been impressed with the new manager.
“I was with Woodie (Woodward) with the Dodgers. He’s been the same guy ever since. He helped out a lot in 2017 because that was my first Big League camp. Seeing him over here now is refreshing. He’s a really laid back guy. He has high enthusiasm so we’re excited.”
Emily Jones, who used to be the Sports Director here at KCBD-TV has been part of the Rangers’ television broadcast since 2007 is excited to start another season.
“I try to stock up on mom time and family time in these last few weeks before things get going. It’s just trying to plan. I end up working 100 games of the 162. It’s a lot of calendars and organizing.”
The Rangers love traveling the State and meeting their great fans and Jones says the Caravan is a terrific way to allow that to happen.
“This is one of the really cool things we do. It gives our players a chance to interact with our fans, but gives our fans a chance to get to know some of these young guys. It gives the fans to see some up and coming youngsters who we hope will be regulars in Arlington next season.”