Rangers should already know trade deadline needs after first 2 months of 2024

Texas Rangers v Miami Marlins
Texas Rangers v Miami Marlins / Brennan Asplen/GettyImages

The Rangers finished up their series with the Tigers on Wednesday night with a satisfying 9-1 win. Look at that! The offense showed up. After totaling two runs over the first two games of the series, they exploded Wednesday. This series was a microcosm of the season, however, as the Rangers have mostly struggled to score but have had an occasional offensive outburst.

We are deep enough into the 2024 season to realize that the inconsistency of the Rangers offense is a major problem. They are 11th in the league in runs scored after being third last year. The Rangers are in the bottom half of the league in slugging (17th) after also being third last year. Nobody expected the offense to be a consistent problem, even if some injuries popped up. But in baseball you have to expect the unexpected.

So the primary need at the trade deadline for the 2024 Rangers is likely a bat or two. Yes, the offense is still missing Josh Jung and Evan Carter. But most of the year it has solely been Josh Jung, and one player can't make up for the drastic difference in production we have seen. Injuries aside, it seems like there's an increasing chance that the offense over-performed across the board in 2023, which is not so much an insult to the lineup and rather a sobering reality for a team that got red-hot in October.

The main person this seems to be true for is, unfortunately, 2023 postseason hero, Adolis Garcia. He is down over 100 points in OPS this season and his wRC+ is a below-average 98 after sitting at 123 last year. Mitch Garver also provided consistent slug out of the DH spot last year and the Rangers have really yet to have anyone seriously contribute in that role with Wyatt Langford having a bit of a slower rookie year than anticipated. Pair those things with more minor struggles from Jonah Heim and Nathaniel Lowe, and this offense needs help ... especially in the slugging department.

Another area of need for the Rangers is bullpen depth. This issue is a little bit lower on the totem pole because of the options the Rangers have when all the starters get healthy. Jose Urena, who was spectacular against the Tigers, will slot back in to a long relief role and is likely joined by at least Andrew Heaney and maybe Dane Dunning when the rotation is back on track. The bullpen will get better depth just from the starters getting healthy alone, at least in the middle innings.

But the Rangers could certainly afford another high-leverage arm for the later innings. There are a few reasons for this. First, it's possible that the rotation never gets fully healthy with how the injuries have gone this season. That would mean the middle innings get less help from the current starters and one of your more trusted arms may have to start coming in earlier, especially if the Rangers are in the hunt late in the season. Also, Josh Sborz is on the mend from an injury and Jose Leclerc has not shown reliability in high-leverage situations.

Also, as nails as David Robertson and Kirby Yates have been, they are both on the older side and likely won't be able to be used as frequently as Sborz and Leclerc were last year (should the Rangers make the playoffs). With Sborz and Leclerc currently being question marks, another reliever the Rangers can trust in high-leverage situations would help lighten their load and keep them both effective.

The season has not gone well to this point, but the division as a whole has not been great. The Rangers are far from out of it. Their needs are clear and, with a few moves, Chris Young and the front office could put the Rangers in a good position for a late playoff push. CY was active at the deadline last year and fans would be surprised if he doesn't make some moves again at the end of July.