Who’s had it better the last decade? Texas Rangers or Houston Astros’ fans?
By Travis Koch
The recent run of success for the Houston Astros has Texas Rangers’ fans both scared and envious. But it wasn’t too long ago when Astros’ fans felt the same way about the Rangers.
It’s never fun watching your rival succeed, especially when you’re not at your best. The Texas Rangers currently find themselves in that unsettling situation. That team down in Houston hasn’t just dominated the AL West the past two years, but they’ve also dominated the postseason, reaching the ALCS in 2018 and winning the World Series in 2017.
2018 was the first season since the Astros joined the AL West that they won the division while the Rangers finished in last place. Hence, the peak of panic among Texas Rangers’ fans.
I’m not going to sit here and tell you that the Rangers will be better than the Astros next season. I won’t suggest that for the next few seasons, actually. However, it’s irritating to hear Rangers’ fans say “we should rebuild like the Astros did” or “this team has been terrible ever since Nolan Ryan left for Houston”.
Texas fans seem to forget how good they’ve had it over the past decade. The Rangers have reached the postseason five times since ’09; four of those five appearances came after winning the division. And, of course, they made it to back-to-back World Series in 2010 and 2011.
Though the pinnacle has not yet been reached, it’s awfully short-sighted to claim the Rangers have been a failing team in recent memory. A single terrible season, like the one they had in 2018, should not taint the many recent successes. Don’t forget how ecstatic you were after each of those division titles. Don’t forget how awesome 2010 and 2011 were.
Astros fans were laughed at back then. The Stros’ last two seasons in the National League Central (2011 and 2012) saw a combined 111 wins. That means they lost 213 games over that span. But the worst was yet to come, as they posted a 51-111 record in 2013–their inaugural AL West season.
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
Houston’s run of mediocrity slated them three consecutive #1 overall draft picks. They drafted Carlos Correa in 2012, Mark Appel in 2013, and Brady Aiken in ’14. Also, they drafted George Springer as the 11th overall pick in 2011 and Alex Bregman 2nd overall in 2015.
Correa, Springer and Bregman are now superstars; Appel is no longer in baseball and Aiken has hardly progressed since being drafted.
Yes, it would great if the Rangers had the opportunities to pick first or second every draft, but the teams doing so are typically in a bad way. Shouldn’t you be happy that the Texas Rangers haven’t been so pathetic as to draft that high five times in the last eight years?
The Astros have a ring, and that goes a long way when it comes to bragging rights. But their fans spent years pulling their hair out as they watched the worst team in Major League Baseball. 51 wins in 2013! The fewest season wins in Rangers’ franchise history came in 1994 when they notched only 52. Houston went three straight years winning less than 57 games!
So, I guess the question is… would you rather have been an Astros’ fan or a Rangers’ fan over the last decade?
Personally and objectively, I side with the Rangers. Give me consistent success over eventual success. Give me two World Series appearances over one.
Texas is coming off a terrible season, but that’s it. They won the division three years ago and competed for a wildcard berth two years ago. It’s not like they’ve been the laughing-stock of MLB for three straight years. Plus, their rebuild is just about complete.
With the young talent the Texas Rangers currently have, they should win more than 67 games in 2019. That’s not exactly a high bar to set, but it’s progress. The Rangers have already hit rock bottom, and it wasn’t even that deep of a fall. Better days are coming very soon; no run of sub-60-win seasons are headed our way like they were to Astros fans just a handful of years ago.