I believe there’s a large cave where baseball people go to hibernate after the season ends. They set the alarm and then bed down to sleep off the last year’s battles.
In Texas’ case, the 2014 season took a lot of sleep. So much that when they finally jolted awake, someone looked at the clock and said, “Holy crap! It’s January! We slept right through the Winter Meetings!” Except for that one guy who got up to pee in the middle of December and happened to sign Ross Detwiler.
Since chucking the alarm clock across the room, the Ranger brass have been like everyone else who wakes up late – running around like their hair is on fire trying to get caught up. Somebody put the coffee on! Plug in the “Yes! We’re Open” sign! Call everybody! Deals have been flying in and out of the office and suddenly, in three days worth of moves, the 2015 squad is taking shape.
The dealmakers addressed concerns about pitching – it’s always pitching – catching depth, and a minor concern about what to do with the surplus of talent in the middle infield.
First came Yovani Gallardo, landing the Rangers the Brewers’ Opening Day starter for five of the last six years and putting Luis Sardinas to good use as currency. It’s a good move for everyone. Jeff Banister gets a solid number three in the rotation, Gallardo comes home to Fort Worth, and Sardinas gets out from behind the Andrus, Profar, Odor roadblock that was going to keep him in small ball for years to come.
With Gallardo stepping into the starting rotation, the Rangers got a second cup of coffee, then added Mets right-handed reliever Gonzalez Germen. Germen has been up and down between the Show and the minors and will join a bullpen that has a host of young arms scrambling for positions. These are in addition to Detwiler who came to the Rangers from the Nationals and immediately filed for arbitration. That deal got done before they’d even finished that second cup of January joe.
September 6, 2014; Oakland, CA, USA; Houston Astros catcher Carlos Corporan (22) bats during the seventh inning against the Oakland Athletics at O.co Coliseum. The Athletics defeated the Astros 4-3. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
One right-hander who won’t be helping the Rangers this year is prospect Akeem Bostick, who’ll be in Astros orange in exchange for catcher Carlos Corporan, a move that solidifies depth behind the plate with Robinson Chirinos. Chirinos displayed an outstanding arm in 2014 and bringing the veteran Corporan to the dugout should provide stability at number 2 on your scorecard.
Still to come is maybe adding a lefty to the bullpen, filling the open right corner of the outfield, and what to do with arbitration candidate Mitch Moreland. It’s been a good week, let’s hope the Rangers aren’t hitting the snooze button and rolling over to snore until Spring Training.