November 2, 2023 : By Office of Communications & Public Engagement
There was a Liberty University connection celebrating on the field with the 2023 World Series Champions Texas Rangers on Wednesday night. Tony Beasley, third-base coach for the Texas Rangers, is a former Flames infielder, playing in both the 1988 and 1989 seasons for Liberty.
The Rangers defeated the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-0 on Wednesday to take the series 4-1 for the franchise’s first-ever title.
At Liberty, Beasley was a leadoff hitter and the starting second baseman. In 1989, he hit a stellar .345 and stole 24 bases, earning him team MVP honors. Following his time on the Mountain, he was drafted in the 19th round of the 1989 MLB Draft by the Baltimore Orioles. He spent the next eight seasons as an infielder for multiple Orioles and Pittsburgh Pirates affiliates, recording a .260 in his minor league career.
After ending his playing career in 1998, Beasley continued his career in baseball by coaching. He has now spent 23 years coaching at the major and minor league levels, and throughout that time earned multiple awards such as Baseball America’s Double-A Manager of the Year in 2004.
Beasley joined the Texas Rangers’ staff in 2015. After missing the 2016 season due to a cancer diagnosis, he returned to the team in 2017 and has continued to serve with them since then. Last season, he was named the team’s interim manager with 48 games remaining in the season following the dismissal of Chris Woodward.
Earlier this year, Beasley joined a Liberty Athletics podcast and shared about the impact that Liberty University has had on his life. He said that he originally committed to the university because Head Coach Bob Woodson gave him a chance to compete for a starting position at second base or shortstop when every other school only wanted him to pitch. Once he arrived on campus, he saw Woodson living out his Christian faith and that encouraged him to deepen his own personal relationship with Jesus.
“When I got to Liberty, I learned what (the university) was all about internally and spiritually, and the impact it has on you as a person,” he said. “I would say I wasn’t 100% Liberty material when I got there, but within a month I felt like I was Liberty material because it impacted a changed my life so much. (Between) the school, the student body, and the whole gambit of it, I saw Christianity on a whole other level and I knew I needed to be a part of that. I got to know who God was at Liberty, and I thank (Head Coach) Bob Woodson for that.”
Beasley has continued to boldly live his faith out on a daily basis, including in his role with the Rangers. In many of his social media posts, he shares the message of salvation and provides spiritual encouragement. On Oct. 30, before Game 3 of the series against the Diamondbacks, he appeared on MLB Network’s pregame show wearing a “JESUS WON” T-shirt, which was first sported by Rangers rookie Evan Carter.
Beasley said on the podcast that he hopes to be a light for Christ in whatever place God directs him.
“I think people are watching our lives and want to know if our actions line up with what we are saying and who we are saying we are. When you are consistent in your living, and your walk and your talk match, they will look at you and notice that something is different,” he said.