Possible Offseason Moves for the Texas Rangers

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With the off-season coming up, and coming up fast, the Rangers have a lot of decisions to make with their team.

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Contracts expiring: Mike Napoli, Yovani Gallardo, Will Venable, and both Colby Lewis and Mitch Moreland are on one year deals. Lewis may be signed around the same amount ($4,000,000), but Moreland is having the best year of his career (.285/335/500) and we more than likely will not be able to sign him to another $2,950,000 contract. The positive thing when it comes to Moreland is that he is arbitration eligible, which basically means he is under team control. He will most likely pull a contract of at least $6-8 million dollars for the next year. He could also be a very appealing trade chip if the Rangers choose to add a trustworthy catcher to the group we currently have or a third pitcher to put in the rotation, but we will get to that later.

Texas Rangers first baseman Mitch Moreland and left fielder Mike Napoli. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Who to re-sign: Money may be tight when it comes to re-signing those free agents. Napoli’s contract is for $16,000,000 for 2015. Realistically he will not get that type of money this time around, but Jon Daniels has seen the fan acceptance and approval of him being on the team and should consider him a must sign. Yovani could possibly take $14-15 million dollars per year over the next 4-5 years, which he has earned by his numbers but that makes him very costly to be a third man in the Rangers rotation. Remember Yu Darvish? He is supposed to be back next year and Darvish combined with Cole Hamels make for a very formidable one-two punch.

Possible Moves: One of the biggest questions for the Rangers this offseason will be what to do with Jurickson Profar. He was once the biggest prospect for any club in the MLB, but two injury riddled seasons has drastically changed that. Especially with the Rangers. The Rangers found a more than capable second baseman in Rougned Odor and look to keep him around for quite some time. That makes Profar expendable in a positive way for the club.

Sep 15, 2015; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg (37) throws the ball during the first inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Last offseason, one of the rumors surrounding the Texas Rangers was trading for Washington Nationals former 1st overall pick Stephen Strasburg. The Nationals could need help up the middle as their current SS Ian Desmond has an expiring contract and could be worth a pretty penny that the Nationals could not afford because of the expiring contracts of Doug Fister and Jordan Zimmerman, two of their starting pitchers. Fister, Zimmerman and Max Scherzer (signed last off-season for a massive contract) headlined what was expected to be the best in baseball. Strasburg had a rough season when he was healthy and was not healthy for a good couple of months. Though he has looked better since coming off the DL this last time, the Nationals are still considering parting ways with him. Stephen Strasburg has a one year $7.5 million dollar contract and is arbitration eligible for the last time for the contract year of 2016. That makes him a free agent in 2017.

What to Watch for: Be on the lookout for the re-signing of Napoli and maybe even a trade of Moreland allowing Nap to take over first base. Also look for a deal involving Profar and possibly another prospect or two (Maybe even Moreland) for Strasburg. Bringing in Strasburg could be risky because of the Rangers recent luck, or lack of luck, in pitching health. But a rotation of Hamels, Darvish, Strasburg, Derek Holland, and Martin Perez or Colby Lewis sounds like it could be a really fun year for the Rangers.

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