Texas Rangers: Grading the team’s 2021 MLB trade deadline moves

Seth Carlson
Jul 21, 2021; Bronx, New York, USA; Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Spencer Howard (48) pitches against the New York Yankees during the first inning at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 21, 2021; Bronx, New York, USA; Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Spencer Howard (48) pitches against the New York Yankees during the first inning at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports /
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Ian Kennedy Texas Rangers
Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports /

Texas Rangers Trade Grades: Ian Kennedy, Kyle Gibson and Hans Crouse to the Phillies

They probably should’ve just stopped announcing the trade after Kyle Gibson and Ian Kennedy to the Phillies for Spencer Howard and two prospects. That also would’ve been the ultimate steal.

Alas, they didn’t, and we had to find out the Texas Rangers shipped off pitching prospect Hans Crouse to Philly in the deal. That was a gut punch, for sure. His inclusion made the deal go from absolute no-brainer to rather “meh” in an instant.

Still, Kyle Gibson and Ian Kennedy were destined to leave the Rangers this week and they certainly did, as they’re now teammates together in Philly.

Even with Crouse included, Texas did well in this trade. Acquiring former top prospect Spencer Howard, even with his bloated near 6 ERA, has tons of potential and is under team control through 2027. Plus, who doesn’t need a change of scenery sometimes?

Howard was once one of the top pitching prospects in all of MLB. If the Rangers can tap into that pedigree, they’ve got themselves a keeper.

And in prospects Josh Gessner and Kevin Gowdy, Texas adds more pitching depth to their farm system, and you can never have too much pitching. Those are two solid adds.

The one aspect holding back complete praise of this trade is the Crouse element. As the No. 9 prospect in the Rangers’ system, some had him pegged as a reliever and others a starter. When that happens, like Gallo, predicting the future can become murky. It’s better to let another organization have that problem.

And it’s not as though the Phillies have been very successful with developing pitching (Spencer Howard), so it’s not as if we should expect Crouse to turn into Jacob deGrom for them.

Sometimes, sacrifices must be made for the future betterment of the organization. We should trust that Jon Daniels and Chris Young made the correct decision here with Crouse. More importantly, they shipped out Gibson and Kennedy for real value.

Grade: B

OVERALL GRADE: B

Next. Texas Rangers taking right approach to rebuild. dark

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