Texas opts for front-office continuity

The Texas Rangers announced general manager Jon Daniels and assistant GM Thad Levine received contract extensions on Friday.

According to a source, the deals are three-year extensions that run through 2018.

Each was entering the final year of his contract, but ownership had tremendous confidence in the ability of the pair to push the Rangers into contending status in 2015.

"I think it's really a tremendous statement by ownership for all of our people, players they want to keep the group together," Daniels said in a conference call with the Rangers' beat writers. "Thad and I are in the press release but there are a lot of other people that are going to be impacted positively through this process."

The Rangers are coming off a 95-loss campaign, the team's first losing season since 2008.

Daniels, whose official title is president, baseball operations/general manager, has been with the organization since 2005.

In 2010, Daniels was named Baseball America's Major League Executive of the Year.

Levine has been the Rangers' assistant GM since 2005. He spent the previous six seasons with the Colorado Rockies organization. Like Daniels, Levine is highly regarded in baseball circles. Levine was a candidate for the Arizona Diamondbacks' GM job this offseason before backing out. Daniels praised Levine for taking on the additional role of international scouting when assistant GM A.J. Preller left to become the general manager of the San Diego Padres.

Daniels said Levine will become a GM one day, whether it be with the Rangers or another franchise.

"You want to get an opportunity to work for a team that has championship ideas and an ownership group that's going to support you," Levine said. "In a group where you feel like you can learn [and] simultaneously impact other people's lives, and for me all those boxes are checked here in Texas. We got a tremendous group of people here and I don't see that changing anytime in the near future. It's a great place to work and I feel blessed to be a part of this group."

The Rangers had some turnover in the front office this past season, losing both Preller and senior special assistant to the GM and scouting Don Welke to the Padres.

Signing Daniels and Levine maintains the continuity ownership wants.

"Under Jon's and Thad's leadership, the Rangers have created a strong overall organization that has combined major league success with a productive scouting and player development operation over a number of years," co-chairmen Ray Davis and Bob Simpson said in a joint statement. "Jon and Thad are skilled executives who are well respected around the game and completely committed to once again delivering a winning team for our fans."