A few moves were made by the Rangers over the weekend that were not big to most, but were notable. And then there is the news on this last season’s opening day starter having surgery, and finally the question being asked about if the Rangers do need to resign Vlad. The offseason is just underway and this could be one of the first ones in a long time where the Rangers will be one of the teams in the middle of a couple of the biggest moves.
For most teams, the pitcher that gets to take the mound for the opening day is considered the top pitcher and should be the ace of the staff for the season or at least one of the top 2-3 guys in the staff. This season it did not turn out that way for the Texas Rangers, as Scott Feldman failed to continue on the stellar play that lead him to 17 wins in 2009. Feldman had surgery on his right knee, and it is reported that he will be limited during the start of spring training. He went from a 17 game winner last season and the believed to be ace of this staff at the start of the season, to not even being a starter in the 2nd half of the season and pitching out of the bullpen. His stats read at 7-11 with a 5.48 ERA for the season before he got hurt in August and never really pitched for the rest of the season. After he was given a nice contract before this season, the Rangers can only hope that he comes back healthy and can find what was missing this season. If he can come back, maybe he can be the 4th guy in the rotation and they see if he returns to his 09 form.
The Rangers made a minor move during this last weekend, having outrighted three different players and making them free agents. The most notable of these is Brandon McCarthy, the often hated right-handed pitcher that the Rangers traded for in December 2006. The reason that McCarthy was such a failure is that GM Daniels made his first big splash by trading prime prospect John Danks and two others to the Chicago White Sox for McCarthy and an outfielder. McCarthy was great for the White Sox in 2005 and the Rangers thought he was a couple of years ahead of Danks but he was still young as well. The issue with Brandon became injuries and inconsistent pitching on the rare occasion he was healthy. He went 5-10 with a 4.87 ERA in 2007, and in 2008 he only pitched 22 innings and his ERA was over 4.oo again. His ERA while here was never below 4.oo for a season, and he never completed a season either. He had 5 stints on the DL before this season, and then suffered from shoulder inflammation this season and never even pitched. While Daniels has made some great moves since becoming GM for the Rangers, this was one of his first moves and was a complete failure. Chicago got a nice young prospect who has turned out to be a solid pitcher for them and is still developing, and the Rangers got nothing. McCarthy might get a chance somewhere else or in the minors, but his time here is done and he never got even near what the Rangers hoped for when they traded for him.