A couple of days ago, an interesting tweet popped up on my timeline:
Jim Bowden (@JimBowdenESPNxm) – “Thad Levine, TX AGM, denied they have a limit of 3 yrs for any offer for Josh Hamilton and said only the Rangers & Mike Moye his agent know.”
** Bowden also believes that Texas is still Hamilton’s best fit for sustaining the rest of whatever career he’s capable of having at age 31.
I think it’s interesting that Levine came out denied the three year cap on the years offered. Many agree with the premise of a short term deal for two or three years, but I feel that Texas would be willing to go for four with an optional fifth year if the competition stacked up as such. He is not totally irreplaceable, but it would certainly be hard to accomplish the feat. That being said, the hiring of Dave Magadan presents an issue that prevents me from firmly being on the re-sign bandwagon – plate discipline.
Brian Kenny, analyst on MLB Network and firm believer in deep stats painting a more complete picture of a player, put Josh through his “shredder” to analyze what exactly the Rangers would need to replace. His average is fine and his OPS+ is good enough for an everyday centerfielder. He came to an interesting conclusion that directly relates to Magadan – he said that Josh’s plate discipline has to change in order for him to truly warrant his price. In the beginning of the season, he was seeing beach balls and then pitchers finally realized that they could keep pitching him away and he’d still chase, even though that resulted in many cringe worthy strike outs on minimal pitches.
If/When the financial side of negotiations gets resolved, the questions move on to the relationship between Josh & Magadan. If Josh comes back, would Magadan be able to get through to him and help prevent a spell of going 9-43 over 10 games with 18 K’s? How would Magadan react to a game in which Josh goes 0-4 while only seeing 8 pitches his entire time on offense? Does anyone else think Josh may need glasses?
I ask you, the fans, now – Do you think it’s possible to reach Josh? Is he capable of relinquishing control when needed and listening to Magadan?