Filling out the Texas Rangers starting rotation


The Texas Rangers have are in need of 2 or 3 starting pitchers next season.  If Opening day were tomorrow they would only have Yu Darvish and Derek Holland in the starting rotation.  They do still have lefty Martin Perez, but he had Tommy John surgery back in May of 2014.  That means that Perez won’t likely return until mid or late season.

More from Texas Rangers News

Also, the Rangers currently don’t have Colby Lewis locked for next season.  They have been working hard to re-sign Lewis to a rumored 2 or 3 year deal, which means he’ll probably retire a Texas Ranger if he does sign a deal.   But, if for some reason that Lewis doesn’t re-sign the Rangers will need to fill 3 spots by Opening day.

There are several free-agents that the Rangers could target.  To start with Scott Baker is a free-agent and will probably rejoin the team.  Baker filled in several times throughout the season in starting and long relief roles and did quite for the task he was given.  It seems though Baker would be a last resort option and would likely start the season in the minors.

Besides Baker there are several other options for the Rangers.  If budget wasn’t an issue the best options for the Rangers would be to sign Jon Lester, James Shields or Max Scherzer.  There is no way they would sign all three, but if they could get just one it would seem most likely they would target James Shields.

Shields was one of the many reasons that the Kansas City Royals made it to the postseason and made it to the World Series.  He could be one of the pieces that the Texas Rangers need to do the exact same thing.  But, signing Shields seems unlikely because the Rangers don’t plan on expanding the budget for the 2015 season.

That means they’ll have to hope for other options such as Ryan Vogelsong, Ervin Santana, Jason Hammel, Brandon McCarthy, Jake Peavy and Hiroki Kuroda.   The most likely thing to happen would be the Rangers re-sign Colby Lewis and possibly target two of these free-agent pitchers.  Vogelsong, Santana, Hammel and Kuroda would all be good choices.  Peavy has done very well with the San Francisco Giants, but he’s struggled a bit in the American League.

Hopefully the Rangers will sign at least one of the notable free-agents this offseason.  The one thing they can’t do is try to convert another relief pitcher into a starter again.