The Texas Rangers post season aggression has been a welcomed sight to much of the fan base. But will it be enough to right the ship in 2020?
The Texas Rangers have been aggressive this offseason in procuring a pitching staff worthy of a competitive team and needed offensive help. However, that may not matter next season in the grand scheme of things in the AL West.
That is to say that none of these adjustments, no matter how alluring they are, are going to suddenly take our beloved ball club from the 78 win season they finished with in 2019, to the 96 wins that are now required to make the postseason hunt in one of the most competitive divisions in all of baseball. In no way do I believe that they will never be good again because I believe they will. I believe that before the end of the decade the Rangers will return to 2011 form and make another berth into the World Series picture. We may even win one.
However it cannot and will not happen until the front and back offices get behind the same gameplan. Every year it seems that the Rangers begin taking the first steps to a Billy Bean like approach to running a ball club. Look at the Hamels trade of 2018, the Darvish trade of 2017, or the Napoli trade of 2013. All key guys instrumental in the success of the club were dealt away and no one was able to come in and replace the hole that was left the club floundered.
They always send away the biggest and most valuable set pieces in an offense built around one player then get scared when an offense built around one player cannot perform without them and backtrack trying to cobble together a season of 78 to 83 wins. So that the season doesn’t look that bad.
If you want the success of the modern Astros or the A’s of the early 2000’s you have to commit. The longer you’re able to commit, the better your draft quality becomes, which lends to your A/AA/AAA teams to performing at a higher level and eventually your Major League club starts winning as well. Contrary to the phrase, in baseball, the crap often rolls uphill.
The Money Ball philosophy is not one that can be done successfully when your program is only half bought in. The Texas Rangers are faced with a choice. Buy in and see where it can take you or flounder as a middle tier team.