The Rangers announced today that Bobby Jones and Don Welke will be the first recipients of annual awards given in their names.
The Bobby Jones Player Development Man of the Year Award and the Don Welke Scout of the Year Award will be presented for the first time at the 2012 Dr Pepper Texas Awards Show next Thursday (Jan. 12) at the Arlington Convention Center. The awards will then be given out each year.
Some brief background items on Jones and Welke from the club's release:
Jones enters his 25th season as a manager or coach in the Rangers organization in 2012. He was selected as the Pacific Coast League’s Manager of the Year in 2011, when he guided Triple-A Round Rock to an 87-57 record and a first place division finish. Jones has won over 1500 games and guided teams to 12 postseason berths in a managerial career that began with the Class A Charlotte Rangers in 1988. His connection to the franchise dates back to 1967, when he was drafted by the Washington Senators. He later played with the Rangers and owns the club record with 42 career pinch hits.
Welke, the Rangers Senior Special Assistant to the General Manager, Scouting, is a veteran of 47 years as a professional scout with the Reds, Royals, Blue Jays, Orioles, Dodgers, Phillies, and Rangers. He originally joined the Rangers organization in 2005 and returned to the Texas in 2007 after a year with Philadelphia. He has been involved in the scouting and acquisition of countless All-Stars over the years, helping to assemble World Championship clubs in Toronto in 1992 and 1993 as well as the back-to-back A.L. Champion Rangers teams in 2010 and 2011.
BTW, here's an ESPNDallas.com story on Welke from last season. He's been in the game a long time and is a vital part of the front office.
For those of you wanting to attend the Dr Pepper Awards Show, you can still do so. Visit the club's website here or call 972-RANGERS. Tickets are $75 for reserved and $50 for general admission. BTW, here's a list of the Rangers receiving awards (many of them are the BBWAA local chapter awards):
Michael Young: 2011 Rangers Player of the Year, 2011 Marvin Miller Man of the Year Award
C.J. Wilson: 2011 Rangers Pitcher of the Year
Craig Gentry: 2011 Rangers Rookie of the Year
David Murphy: 2011 Harold McKinney Good Guy Award
Darren Oliver: 2011 Jim Sundberg Community Achievement Award
Frank Howard: 2012 Mark Holtz Texas Rangers Alumni Award
Clayton Kershaw: 2011 Texas Professional Baseball Player of the Year
Adrian Beltre: 2011 Rawlings Gold Glove and Silver Slugger Awards
The Dr Pepper Awards Show will be a theater-style seating event. Doors to the Arlington Convention Center will open at 6:30 p.m. and fans attending will be able to get a sneak peak of FanFest. Refreshments will also be served and are including in the ticket price. The Awards Show is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m.