Texas Rangers: Solutions to the Drew Smyly Dilemma

ARLINGTON, TX - JUNE 9: Drew Smyly #33 of the Texas Rangers stands off the mound as Matt Olson #28 of the Oakland Athletics rounds the bases on his two-run home run during the second inning at Globe Life Park in Arlington on June 9, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - JUNE 9: Drew Smyly #33 of the Texas Rangers stands off the mound as Matt Olson #28 of the Oakland Athletics rounds the bases on his two-run home run during the second inning at Globe Life Park in Arlington on June 9, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images) /
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SEATTLE, WA – MAY 29: (L-R) Pitching coach Julio Rangel, catcher Jeff Mathis #2 of the Texas Rangers and relief pitcher Drew Smyly #33 meet at the mound during the fourth inning of a game against the Seattle Mariners at T-Mobile Park on May 29, 2019 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA – MAY 29: (L-R) Pitching coach Julio Rangel, catcher Jeff Mathis #2 of the Texas Rangers and relief pitcher Drew Smyly #33 meet at the mound during the fourth inning of a game against the Seattle Mariners at T-Mobile Park on May 29, 2019 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images) /

Stuck Between a Rock and a Hard Place

You can see that this isn’t as simple as taking Drew Smyly out of the rotation. There has to be a viable replacement and at this point, there really aren’t any. Texas could always aim high and go after a bigger fish in the trade market but that doesn’t line up with their current strategy. Plus, Texas likely isn’t looking to bail on Smyly altogether meaning they have to find a spot for him. He hasn’t pitched in the bigs in 2 years entering 2019 and Tommy John is a tough surgery to come back from. It takes some longer than others and Smyly, at 30, still has a good shot at regaining some form. They could try him in the bullpen perhaps but that’s no guarantee and he can’t go down to the minors.

I think the Rangers do end up making a choice in the Smyly situation but it may not be replacing him. They may go with a long-term plan of using an opener for him which has helped him somewhat. In the end, Texas has to find some resolution though because fans seem to be at their boiling point and he’s quickly losing support among the Rangers’ faithful.

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