The Astros announced today that longtime Assistant Athletic Trainer Rex Jones will be retiring after the 2015 season.
Jones joined the Astros organization in 1978 as a trainer for the Astros' Single-A Daytona Beach Astros. He would join the Double-A Columbus Astros from 1979-1983, and the Triple-A Tucson Toros from 1983-1988. Jones served as the Astros Director of Minor League Athletic Trainers from 1988-1993, the first position of it's kind in Major League Baseball. He joined the major league club in 1994, and was apart of six playoff runs.
Jones served on the Professional Baseball Athletic Trainers Society Board (PBATS), as a member of the Southwest Athletic Trainers Association, and the Greater Houston Athletic Trainers Association.
Jones said of his retirement:
"After 37 years in the game, the time has come for me to find out what the next chapter in my life will be," Jones said. "The Astros organization has been great to me. I appreciate everything they have done for my family and I. I've enjoyed my career immensely and had the opportunity to work with some great people, like Nate Lucero (current head trainer), Dave Labossiere (former head trainer) and many others. It has been very rewarding.
"I like to tell people that I've had a great summer job for the past 37 years."
Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow talked about the long time trainer:
"Rex has been a tremendous asset to the Astros organization for a very long time," said Astros General Manager Jeff Luhnow. "Athletic trainers work behind the scenes without a lot of fanfare. However, the players and staff that have worked with Rex over the years appreciate his great work ethic and his professionalism. On behalf of the Astros organization, we wish him the very best."
Rex Jones has been a steward of the Astros dugout through two different owners and eight different managers since 1994. For as long as I've been an Astros fan, I may have not know the entire staff in a given year but I knew Rex Jones. Maybe it was the walrus mustache, but I like to think it was because he was the first guy out of the dugout to take care of the players. He was a calming force for players when his services were needed and you could see from the nosebleeds. Best of luck Mr. Jones in your future endeavors.