If there’s a glaring hole for the Texas Rangers, besides starting pitching, it’s their lack of power on the right side of the plate. Could Nelson Cruz remedy that?
The Texas Rangers are in desperate need of power from the right side of the plate. That need only grew with the departure of Robinson Chirinos to free agency this offseason. Now with the confirmed retirement of future Hall of Famer, Adrian Beltre, any power threat from the right side of the plate is virtually non-existent. Enter Nelson Cruz, former Rangers slugger extraordinaire.
This rumor is brought to you by Jim Duquette of MLB.com and his 2018-19 Free Agent Rankings. Duquette has the Rangers linked to a couple of players this offseason including Mike Moustakas which we covered last week. While Moustakas probably is a little far-fetched and honestly, it’s harder to piece together, Nelson Cruz actually makes sense. A lot of sense.
The Need For Legit Power On The Right Side
This is by far the biggest reason a Nelly Cruz and Texas Rangers reunion could happen. As mentioned earlier, the departure of Robinson Chirinos and subsequent departure of Adrian Beltre have now ensured that glaring hole. Last season, the Texas Rangers hit 194 homers as a club. Of those 194 homers, only 57 of those came from right-handed hitters. Now of those 57 homeruns, 33 of those came off the bats of either Robinson Chirinos or Adrian Beltre.
More from Texas Rangers News
- Early 2023 MLB mock draft has Texas Rangers selecting an Ohtani-lite
- 3 Texas Rangers outfield trade targets not named Bryan Reynolds
- Did Jacob deGrom really mean what he said at his Texas Rangers press conference?
- Martin Perez accepting the qualifying offer looking like solid deal for the Rangers
- 4 outfielders the Texas Rangers can still pursue this winter
We’re now talking about 11% of the Rangers long balls in 2018 came from players who hit right-handed, that are currently on the 40-man roster. That’s a scary statistic, even for a team as lefty laden as the Texas Rangers.
The Ability To Break Up Left-Handed Hitters
The production being heavily skewed towards left handed hitters isn’t a shock for the Texas Rangers with how lefty dominant the lineup tends to be. Texas regularly posted lineups with 5 or 6 left handed hitters with not much depth on the right side to break them up. Adding Nelly Cruz, would give the Rangers some much needed depth on the right side of the plate by giving an alternative at the DH spot when needed.
Would The Rangers Be Willing To Make The Deal?
Pursuing Nelson Cruz would mean investing between $15 million and $20 million in a near 40-year old player for the next couple of years. However, with the current state of the Texas Rangers, they’re unlikely to be investing that money anywhere else and Nelson Cruz could solve a massive problem for the Rangers regarding power on the right side of the plate.
Additionally, what Rangers fan wouldn’t love to see Nelson Cruz back, blasting homeruns over left field wearing the red, white and blue of the Texas Rangers. As much sense as it may make on the Rangers end of things, I would expect Cruz to be in search of a spot on a contender’s roster as he still brings plenty of pop, hitting 37 homers in 2018.