ARLINGTON -- The Rangers have announced a number of changes in their front office and in their amateur scouting department, including the return of Don Kalkstein as the club's sports psychology consultant. Kalkstein, who has worked for the Mavericks since 2001, was with the Rangers from 1995-2005 as director of performance enhancement. He spent the past seven seasons working for the Red Sox. "I can't say enough great things about Donnie," Rangers infielder Michael Young said. "He's a fantastic communicator. He understands that all players are wired differently and can reach everybody in the clubhouse on different levels. Players for the Red Sox loved him, and I'm sure the same can be said for the Mavs. He knows me very well and knows what gets me going. He's a great addition."
The Rangers also made multiple moves with the official announcements of hires and promotions in their amateur scouting department. The moves are intended to reinforce the Rangers' preparation for the June First-Year Player Draft, which could become even more crucial with the latest restrictions being implemented in international scouting. "That's just the way the industry is going, you've got to look for every advantage," said Kipp Fagg, the Rangers' director of amateur scouting. "Everything is even, with the slotting system and the new rules. You have to out-scout everybody. This is the lifeblood of the organization. We're just not hiring bodies, I've known these guys a long time." The Rangers have hired Clarence Johns as a national crosschecker and promoted Mike Grouse to the same position. Johns comes to the Rangers from the Astros organization, and Grouse, who was the scout who recommended Ian Kinsler, had been the Rangers' crosschecker in the central region. To back them up, the Rangers will have four regional crosscheckers: Casey Harvie (West Coast), Randy Taylor (Midwest), John Booher (Southeast) and Phil Geisler (East). That gives the Rangers six crosscheckers to back up their 18 area scouts. Fagg will also continue to scout players, as will Don Welke, who is senior assistant to general manager Jon Daniels, and A.J. Preller, Rangers director of player personnel. The Rangers also employ three part-time scouts and three video scouts. The Rangers announced the hiring of four new amateur scouts. Steve Watson, who played baseball at Galveston Junior College, was hired to scout in Texas. He joins Doug Eddings and Jay Heafner in giving the Rangers three full-time scouts in their own state. The Rangers have made Texas an area of emphasis since Daniels became general manager. The Rangers also hired Cliff Terracuso to join Frankie Thon in giving the Rangers stronger coverage in the vital state of Florida. They have also hired Doug Banks to work the southwest United States and Jonathan George to work the mid-Atlantic seaboard. On the professional side, the Rangers promoted Greg Smith to special assistant and Major League scout and hired Chris Briones as a professional scout. The Rangers now have 11 professional scouts under pro scouting director Josh Boyd. Twenty years ago, going into the 1992 season, the Rangers had just two scouts assigned full-time to professional coverage. The Rangers also announced that Matt Klotsche has been promoted to manager of baseball operations and Joey Prebynski to assistant advance scout. Paul Kruger has been hired as assistant for player development and international scouting, and Mitchell Webb as video coordinator/research analyst. Brian San Filippo has been named manager of media services and Rob Morse has been hired as manager of publications and media relations.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.