Reporting Jeff Cavanaugh
The Rangers are going to win the World Series. It’s clear as day to see that right? You can break it down very simply:
Yu Darvish is going to take the next logical step and become a bona fide ace. He already has the stuff, as his huge strikeout numbers (10.4/9 innings) show us.
He’ll settle into his role and have more faith in his stuff and stop dancing around outside the strike zone.
Matt Harrison is an outstanding #2. A sub 3.40 ERA that last two seasons, consistently putting together quality starts.
Derek Holland is done being a goofball! He’s got the stuff to be a front-line starter, he’ll show that this year.
Ogando? Anyone remember Ogando the last time he was in the rotation? An All-Star!
Upgraded the catcher position:
AJ Pierzynski last year had a better batting average (.278 to .227) and slugging pct (.501 to .469) than Mike Napoli had last year. He’s better defensively. He was able to pass a physical. Oh, and he actually put up better power numbers than Nap last year too (27 HRs, 77 RBI compared to Nap’s 24 and 56).
Upgraded the DH spot:
Michael Young is my favorite baseball player of all time. Doesn’t change the fact that pitchers weren’t scared of him. If they threw a bad pitch, the way he made them pay was with a single. That was what he became last season. Hopefully playing every day at the same position in Philly he bounces back and has 200 hits, but who knows?
The Big Puma is here! Lance Berkman, last time he was healthy, he was a monster at the plate (.301/.412/31/94). Compare that to M.Y.’s numbers last year if you want to cringe (.277/.312/8/67).
The ‘distraction’ is gone:
How do you put a number on Josh Hamilton being gone?
He was able to carry a team when things were going well, but the Rangers last year were dependent on him, and that killed them down the stretch.
Missing games while trying to find a doctor to tell you that something is wrong with your caffeine intake?
Telling the skipper that you can’t hit because the Almighty is mad at you because you haven’t quit dipping?
Dropping a routine fly-ball in the biggest game of the season and laughing it off?
This team won’t depend on one man to win them games, they’ll pull together and play as a TEAM, and there’s no way to measure what that means in terms of wins and losses.
But then again….
The Rangers could finish 3rd in the AL West. It’s clear as day to see that right? You can break it down very simply:
Starting pitching: They don’t even have 5 starting pitchers on the roster for crying out loud!
Robbie Ross, Martin Perez, Cody Buckel? Who is it going to be?
Last time Alexi Ogando was a starter his arm essentially fell off right around the all star break! Derek Holland throws a 2 hit shutout out one day, and gives up 8 runs the next time out!
No bullpen: Mike Adams, gone. Koji Uehara, gone. Feliz, hurt.
Free agent signing Joakim Soria won’t pitch the first couple of months, and Alexi Ogando isn’t there anymore now that he’s in the rotation. The same might be true of Robbie Ross if he win the 5th spot in the rotation. In their place is…..Jason Frasor? Tanner Scheppers? Martin Perez? Michael Kirkman? Sounds like a bumpy ride.
Outfield: Josh Hamilton said you guys are spoiled.
Also, if you boo him it’s because you “don’t get it”. He uses his beliefs as an excuse for pretty much everything he does wrong and it’s annoying. Oh, and he hit 43 homers and had 128 RBI last season.
You’re replacing that with Craig Gentry and Leonys Martin? Good luck with that.
Old people: Lance Berkman and AJ Pierzynski are being depended on to shoulder some of Josh Hamilton’s power numbers that are gone.
Berkman missed almost all of last year injured, said he wasn’t even going to play baseball this season unless someone bought him out of retirement, and reports from spring training are he doesn’t look to be in great shape. Oh, and he didn’t bother bringing his glove. Could be Alzheimer’s there.
Pierzynski is a 36 year old catcher. That’s a scary proposition by itself. There’s a reason most catchers at that age have made their way to first base. It’s tough on the knees back there. Will either one of these guys be able to play 120 games? Doubtful.
So there you have it, the Rangers are going to be the third best team in the AL West.
That, or maybe they’ll win the World Series. Let me know what you think @JC1053 on twitter
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