Navigating The Rabbit Hole

There is much buzz circulating around the Rangers, like the recent Matt Garza trade, and the potential damage a Nelson Cruz suspension could have. But right now, the talk is the offense, its ineptitude, with people clamoring for Jon Daniels to make another impact trade; this time for a bat.

Over the coming days, you are going to see a lot of this on your Twitter feed:

And there’s nothing you are going to be able to do about it.

If we’re looking only at the Rangers’ offense — especially comparing it to dominant offense’s of the franchise’s past — then it’s not going to stack up. Simple as that.

However, hyperbolizing the wording in “worst team of the century” comes off a bit draconian, wouldn’t you say? The majority of those Texas teams were consistently top-5 in the league in offense, and they also lost substantially more games than they won.

With Matt Garza’s strong opening start, it somewhat creates the slippery-slope assumptions that (a) that type of success will automatically continue, and (b) that trading for a hitter will have a similar effect on the offense.

Let’s reassess our position in the baseball world for a second, shall we? Because I fear the noise is only going to get louder for Jon Daniels to do something, and I’m not entirely sure the fan base knows exactly what it’s asking for;

Regardless if you liked the Matt Garza trade or not, Mike Olt, Justin Grimm, C.J. Edwards — and potentially Neil Ramirez — were all prospect currency, and the Rangers can’t get it back. Trading for a bat, like Alex Rios or Hunter Pence, for instance, would diminish more of that currency.

And what are we really talking about with these “options” on the trade market? They are minimal upgrades, not franchise-saving additions. The more young, controllable talent the Rangers relinquish, the less they will have at their disposal in 2014, 2015, and 2016. It’s a simple concept, isn’t it?

2013 should not be treated like some sort of We Have To Go All-In Right Now type of season. Right now the Rangers’ fan base is rabid about the necessity for a bat to be added to the lineup, but you’ll have to count me out of that club.

The Rangers are one of the 4-best teams in the American League with the roster as currently constructed, and the addition of one of the aforementioned bats would add something like +1.0 win over the remainder of the season. That’s not worth the cost it would take to acquire whomever that player is.

Every year this strange idea gets conceived that if your team is in contention, then they must buy at the trade deadline. Go for the whole fucking shebang. That’s why you still see Internet trade fantasies involving Jurickson Profar. But the truth is, the long-game, the window of success, is more important than what’s happening in this exact moment.


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  • BZ

    I am more concerned about the gaping black hole in the outfield next year. Unless we plan on rolling with Engel beltre/Martin/Gentry as our outfield next year, with Profar at DH.

    • Eric Reining

      Certainly won’t see Beltre/Martin/Gentry in the same outfield. Something will be done.

      Wouldn’t be surprised, or opposed, to seeing Nelson Cruz brought back on a one- or two-year deal. I’m expecting the suspensions to launch in the next 5-7 days, and I think the Rangers could use it to leverage themselves into a below-market offer.

      I think he’d be a DH most of the time … maybe 40-50 starts in RF.

      By next year, I think Profar is the everyday 1B, Profar at 2B, with Mitch Moreland elsewhere, and probably one impact outfielder in LF. (Alex Gordon?)

      • primi_timpano

        I hope you are right about Gordon and wrong about Profar. Profar is too good an athlete and has too good of an arm (did you see that across the diamond throw from third while on his knees?) to be played at first. I would rather Kinsler play first and Profar at 2d.

        • Eric Reining

          Haha, I goofed that, clearly. Must have been in a rush. I meant KINS at 1B.

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