Texas Rangers Trade Targets: Starting Rotation

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Jun 30, 2015; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Padres starting pitcher Ian Kennedy (22) pitches during the first inning against the Seattle Mariners at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

3. Others

With the top two targets being Hamels and Cueto, there remain several potential options to restock the starting rotation with an ace. None of these arms will bring the same impact but they could help a team that is in need of a pitcher that can get them into the playoffs. The main question is whether any of these options is worth trading anything with Harrison making a start this week and Perez not far behind. Derek Holland may also make his return in August if all goes well with his rehab.

  • Scott Kazmir: Kazmir is in the second season of his great comeback with the Oakland Athletics and is actually having the best season of his career. Kazmir has made 16 starts in 2015 and has a 5-5 record with a 2.56 ERA. Kazmir started off the season with a 0.99 ERA in his first four starts, struggled in May, then bounced back in June with a 2.53 ERA over five starts. Kazmir took a no decision in his only career start at Rangers Ballpark, giving up three runs over six innings. Trades within a division are always tough to pull off because the teams do not want to help each other. The Athletics also may view themselves as contenders in the American League West which would make them unlikely sellers this trade deadline.
  • Ian Kennedy: After making a lot of big moves this offseason, the San Diego Padres were considered by many to be a contender for a Wild Car Spot in the National League. As we approach the All-Star break, the Padres have a 39-45 record and are in fourth place at 7.5 games behind the Los Angeles Dodgers in the National League West. As a result, the Padres could look to sell at the deadline and a name that the Rangers could use is Kennedy. Kennedy has a 4-8 record with a 4.84 ERA in 80 innings across his 15 starts. His stock has been on the rise, as the Padres continue to struggle and he had a 2-2 record with a 2.31 ERA. Kennedy has a career 0-1 record at Rangers Ballpark after he gave up six runs over 5.2 innings in his only start.
  • Jeff Samardzija: After being highly sought after during the 2014 trade deadline, Samardzija is likely available and should not cost as much as he did last season. At this point last season, he had a 2-7 record but owned a 2.83 ERA in 17 starts. So far in 2015 he has a 5-4 record but has struggled with a 4.33 ERA in his 17 starts. Samardzija has been a solid innings eater and is likely not the ace that this team needs but adds solid depth. He has made two starts at Rangers Ballpark and has taken the loss in both, giving up four home runs and 14 runs over 12 innings.

Next: Final Thoughts