Texas Rangers


The Texas Rangers are looking to find their identity during a rebuild from last place in 2018, when they finished 67-95 and 36 games out of first against tough division rivals including the 103-win Astros and the 97-win Athletics. 2019 projects the Rangers improving by three games to 70-92, but still end up in last place 28 games behind the Astros.
What’s New

The most notable change was losing Adrian Beltre, who retired after 21 seasons, the last eight with the Rangers where he averaged 4.375 WAR. There are many new faces to the Rangers this year, mostly from a large turnover in pitchers, none of whom are impact players:

  • Lance Lynn (3-yr FA): starter from Yankees has been inconsistent and injury
  • Shelby Miller (1-yr FA), RP from Arizona, who will join the starting rotation
  • Drew Smyly (off 60-day DL), lefty starter from Cubs, who will also join the starting rotation
  • Shawn Kelley (1-yr FA), 35 yr old reliever from A's
  • Zach McAllister (1-yr FA), reliever from Dodgers
  • Jesse Chavez (2-yr FA), 35 yr reliever old from Cubs
  • Jordan Romano, Rule 5 pitcher, from White Sox
Several position players are also new:
  • Jeff Mathis (C, 2-yr FA) from Diamondbacks. Mathis was a good addition, for only $3.13MM he is forecast to be the second-highest contributor on the team at 2.3 WAR, behind Elvin Andrus's 2.8 WAR.
  • Asdrubal Cabrera (1-yr FA), 3B, from Phillies
  • Patrick Wisdom, 3B/1B from Cardinals
Who did the Rangers lose? Aside from their star Adrian Beltre, catcher Robinson Chirinos left to the Astros, starter Matt Moore moved to the Tigers, starter Martin Perez went to the Twins, and Tony Barnette to the Cubs.
What Could Change
At the Major League level, Doug Fister is a key starter, coming off of the 60-day DL last season. {After publication, Doug Fister announced his retirement from baseball}. Reliever Matt Bush also came off 60-day DL in the off-season.
Down in the farm, former Major League stars Hunter Pence and Jason Hammel signed to Minor League contracts. There is a real possibility for them to make it through Spring Training with a Major League roster spot, or add depth to the team as the season progresses.
Prospects that can make an impact coming out of Spring Training include Triple-A starters Taylor Hearn and Yohander Mendez, and lefty bench outfielder prospect Willie Calhoun. The rest of the Rangers prospects are in the lower levels, and not yet ready to come to the Majors, such as Double-A shortstop Anderson Tejada, Leody Taveras, and High-A outfielder Bubba Thompson.
What’s Coming
The Rangers are in a state of flux, where they are trying out a significant number of new pitchers, almost a completely new rotation and bullpen. They are slated to have the 15th-highest payroll at $115.5MM and 27th in wins (70), making them the 20th in dollars per win ($1.65MM). The key players are Elvis Andrus (2.8 WAR projected for 2019), Jeff Mathis (2.3), Joey Gallo (2.2), and Rougned Odor (1.9).
Overall, the starting pitcher has no standout and can be upgraded, or a surprise season from one of their new players. Their rotation is now Mike Minor, Lance Lynn, Drew Smyly, Edinson Volquez, and Shelby Miller.
One factor that could affect the team is how Global Life Park in Arlington is now the most hitter-friendly park in the Majors, with a +35% park factor, ahead of Coors Field's 27%. With the large number of new pitchers to the staff, be on the lookout for an adjustment period and a possible slower start to the season for the Rangers pitchers.
Best-Case Scenario: The best-case for the Rangers is if the some of their one-year free agents work out and can extend for the longer-term rebuild. At the same time, they have the 7th pick of the draft and will need to parley that into success in the future. No matter how things are spun, the Rangers are not contenders for the next season or two.
Worst-Case Scenario: The Rangers are forecast to finish 28 games behind the Astros, and things could go worse longer term for the entire organization if their top prospects fail to develop or if they miss on their draft picks.


Posts les plus consultés de ce blog

Atlanta Braves

Chicago Cubs

Chicago Blackhawks