Rangers decide against signing pitcher Rogers

Updated: October 4, 2005, 12:34 AM ET
Associated Press

DALLAS -- Kenny Rogers will not return to the Texas Rangers, who are cutting ties with the pitcher whose third stint with the team will be most remembered for shoving two television cameramen.

Starting Pitcher
Texas Rangers

30 14 8 53 87 3.46

In a statement Monday, the Rangers said the 40-year-old left-hander, who will become a free agent, will not be offered a contract for 2006.

"The Texas Rangers organization would like to thank Kenny Rogers for his efforts over the last two seasons and during his entire Rangers career," general manager John Hart said. "As we look at 2006 and beyond, we feel it is in the club's best interests to move forward without him."

Rogers' agent, Scott Boras, didn't immediately return a phone message.

The team offered no further comment. Hart was scheduled to meet with the media Tuesday to discuss the 2005 season and the team's plans for the offseason.

Rogers was 14-8 with a 3.46 ERA, and was an All-Star for the second straight year. But what most people will remember about his 12th season with the Rangers is the videotaped tirade June 29 when he shoved two TV cameramen while walking onto the field.

While appealing his 20-game suspension, which eventually was reduced to 13 games, Rogers pitched in the All-Star Game. As an All-Star, he earned a $50,000 contract bonus -- the same amount as his fine.

Rogers was a 17-year-old outfielder when he was drafted by the Rangers in 1982 and turned into a pitcher. In 1994, Rogers pitched a perfect game for Texas against the Anaheim Angels.

Rogers pitched for Texas from 1989-95, then went to the New York Yankees (1996-97), Oakland (1998-99) and New York Mets (1999) before returning to the Rangers from 2000-02. After not being offered salary arbitration, Rogers left and spent one season in Minnesota before going back to Texas when he signed a $6 million, two-year contract before the 2002 season.

After winning a career-high 18 games in 2004, Rogers met with owner Tom Hicks before spring training this season to talk about a contract extension. Rogers denied reports that he threatened to retire, and quit speaking to most media.

The Rangers had had some talks with Boras about a new contract midway through this season, but Hart said the two sides were far apart on money. That was before Rogers shoved the cameramen.

Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press