Texas Rangers: Why the Todd Frazier signing should excite fans
By Sam Gladen
Per reports, the Texas Rangers have agreed to a deal with free agent Todd Frazier. This is a move that should excite fans for an improved team in 2020.
The Texas Rangers continued their aggressive postseason strategy on Sunday by agreeing to terms for a one-year deal worth $5 million with former Mets third baseman Todd Frazier according to Evan Grant with The Dallas Morning News. Frazier is expected to play a impactful role at third base for Texas in 2020 with the ability to also play first, or DH as needed.
Even though the Rangers are getting solid help in a position where it is sorely needed, I can’t help but notice many fans online deflated that this seems to mark the end of the Arrenado hunt. Fans also seem to have a general feeling that the Rangers have over promised and under delivered with the signing. Here’s why they’re wrong.
While yes, there is understandable trepidation surrounding Frazier’s offensive production it has been proven in recent years that sometimes all someone needs to wake up their bat is a change in scenery. (I’m looking at you, Hunter Pence.) Even so Frazier completed the 2019 season with a .251 batting average and a .329 on-base percentage as well as 21 home runs and 67 RBI’s. A far cry from the worst producer on his new team. His benefit to the Rangers, however, will come on the defensive side of the ball.
Frazier was an integral part of the Mets defensive strategy that allowed 711 runs and helped them to 3rd place in the National League. Frazier played 120 games last season at 3rd base starting 112 at the position allowing only 12 errors over 997.1 innings played. Assuming the Arrenado trade with Colorado is still on the table, which admittedly seems less and less likely by the day, it would not be a stretch for Frazier to cross the field to first base, especially given time this spring to re-acclimate to the position.
Frazier played in three total games with two starts and no errors at first base while in New York last season. The sample size for Fraziers competence at first gets much larger, however, if you look before he made the move to New York. He played first base in 97 games across four teams for a total of 740.1 innings with just nine errors over seven years. While this move doesn’t quite appear to be the elite bat the Rangers’ faithful hoped to add this offseason, only time will tell if Frazier’s time in Texas will prove fruitful for both the club and himself.