Texas Rangers starting rotation: 5 New Years resolutions

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The Texas Rangers are thankful that the calendar has finally rolled over to 2015 and can forget last season.  Looking back it’s amazing to realize just how bad last year was for the Texas Rangers.  They were picked to be a top contender in the American League and was supposed to have the best lineup in the majors.

But, the injury bug ravished the roster throughout the season and quickly put the Texas Rangers out of contention for a playoff spot.  Spring training is just around the corner and so is a new season.  This coming season I’m looking forward to a healthy roster and to seeing the Rangers contend again in the American League west.  I think next season we’ll continue to see Yu Darvish be the ace of the club and dominate his opponents.  I expect to see him step it up a bit this year, especially against the Houston Astros.  The Astros won’t always be an easy target, but they might be for another season or two.

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This coming season is a big year for Derek Holland.  He missed much of the season last year, but once he was on the field he look very good and showed the he could be the team’s best pitcher behind Darvish.  The Rangers will need both of them to be very dominate and healthy next season.  They can’t win games by themselves though.  They’ll need a bit of luck and hard work from Colby Lewis to have him repeat his 2014 performance.  More importantly his second half performance.  Lewis managed to pick up the pieces after the second half after being roughed up a few times and was able to gain back most of the old Cobra he had back during the 2012 season.

The Rangers picked up Ross Detwiler from the Washington Nationals during the offseason.  I haven’t seen him pitch much, but he looks to have some potential.  The Rangers need another starter and it helps that he’s a lefty.  The Rangers might use Nick Tepesch and Nick Martinez again in the rotation next season.

If the Rangers starting rotation has any New Years Resolutions they should be the following:

1. Stay healthy and off the disabled list.

2. Pitch well and keep the team in the game.

3.  Get some run support.  Now the pitchers cannot control this aspect, but hopefully with a healthy Prince Fielder, Shin-Soo Choo and others the offense will improve.

4.  Be more careful with the pitch count.  I don’t think there is a solid answer to how many pitches they should throw, but mainly this season they’ll need to be more careful about leaving pitchers in with high counts.  Last season I was a bit worried about Martin Perez after his solid back-to-back 3-hit games.  He’s an amazing pitcher, but arms to wear out.

Video: 04/18/14 Perez’s lights-out start
Martin Perez dominates the White Sox with seven strikeouts in a three-hit shutout, the first shutout outing of his career

5.  And finally, be competitive.  Show the same want to win attitude they had during the 2012 season.  That team wanted to win every game and played until the final out.  Last season it didn’t seem like they had the same fight.  And really it’s understandable with the situation they were in.  This is a new season and 2014 is in the past.  Time to dust off and play baseball again.  Next season no matter how bad things get they should never ever quit.

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