Congratulations baseball fans, Opening Day is almost here! We have 40 days remaining until Opening Night at Globe Life Park. In honor of that, I will be analyzing all players on the Rangers 40-man roster, one at a time. Posts will come every week, with an analysis of every player for every day all the way until Opening Night. I will provide a brief analysis and a score out of 10 based on their expected value to help grade how good the squad looks going into the 2017 campaign. Keep in mind that I will be only looking at players on the 40-man roster as of February 22nd, 2017. Some players are expected to join the big league club and obviously some changes will be made. However, it is unpredictable to guess what the roster will look like on opening day so we will breakdown our current one. So let’s get started from the top-
#39 Dario Alvarez
Alvarez was a mid-season acquisition from the New York Mets last season. He appeared in 10 games with Texas and pitched 11.2 innings. He gave up 11 runs in those innings 10 of them earned. Things are looking up however, and while he still needs some time to develop, his curveball is excellent and he has shown nice command of his other pitches. He could see some playing time this year but I wouldn’t expect to see much out of him just yet.
Value in 2017: 4.2
#43 Tony Barnette
In 53 games last season, Barnette went 7-3 with a 2.09 ERA. He pitched 60.1 innings and was mostly used in late game situations. He stunned us with his cutter and his staggering swing and miss rate. He was clutch for the Rangers, shutting down the Blue Jays in all thee games of the ALDS. With his 2.1 WAR, it’s hard to imagine a pen without him, and he was the unsung hero of the bullpen in 2016. He is expected to continue upon his success in 2017, and will be a valuable asset to Banister in the late-game.
Value in 2017: 8.1
#51 Matt Bush
Matt Bush is a success story, no matter what his numbers are through his career. If you haven’t heard his story, I encourage you look into it. It embodies the true impact that baseball can have on someone’s life. It was hard not to feel the emotions as tens of thousands of fans cheered him on in his major league debut last season. It is a beautiful story for life and for baseball. Besides his story, Matt Bush is a big component in the bullpen. In 58 games, he posted a 2.48 ERA and went 7-2. He also recorded a save. His 4.36 Strikeout to walk ratio is notable. He has a power fastball with a developing breaking ball and slider. He again looks to be the #1 choice for the set-up man in 2017. Expect a better breaking ball and more command on his pitches this season.
Value in 2017: 6.8
#54 Andrew Cashner
Cashner is an offseason acquisition from the Miami Marlins. He is entering his 7th season at the big league level. He was horrendous last year, putting up a 5.98 ERA in 12 games. We know that he can bounce back, as he has before, and the Rangers are hoping that he can do just that. The scouting team must have seen something encouraging so we will give him the benefit of the doubt and say he will produce 4th-man-like numbers in the rotation, but don’t expect anything better than that.
Value in 2017: 5.5
Make sure and stay updated, a new post will be made this weekend continuing the series. I hope you enjoy this and hopefully it will help us make it to Opening Night!