Well the Texas Rangers have been busy with offseason moves in the last week. During the offseason there is a lot of downtime with the occasional free agent signing. For contenders this time of year can be very important. Most contending teams from the year before lose valuable free agents. They are rumored to be in on every high profile free agent out there. The teams that are rebuilding are usually a little quiet. UNLESS!!! They need to hire a new manager and coaching staff.

The Rangers hired Chris Woodward to be the new manager two weeks ago. Now his staff is starting to come together. First the Rangers announced that they were keeping Don Wakamatsu, Jayce tingler, Tony Beasley and Hector Ortiz. Ortiz is moving from bullpen coach back to first base coach, where he served before.

The Rangers also announced that they have just hired Louis Ortiz has hitting coach. He was the assistant hitting coach for the Dodgers in 2018. He obviously had a personal working relationship with Woody in LA. Now the only positions that remain are pitching coach and bullpen coach. Expect that to come sooner than later. The Rangers will want their entire staff filled and ready to go quickly. An interesting name was brought to my attention by a old buddy who is very knowledgable on baseball. Brad Wallace asked why not Jimmy Jones for pitching coach or bullpen coach? Jones is a native of Dallas and still lives in the metroplex. He has been minor league pitching coach for the Padres for 10 years. His staffs have all had tremendous numbers. It is an interesting name, to say the least. Don’t forget that the Padres GM is A.J Preller. He was Jon Daniels assistant before getting that job.

Free agency is also in full swing and the Rangers have made their first move. It was announced today that Texas has signed a two year deal with catcher Jeff Mathis. Mathis played for Arizona last year. Although he only hit .200 he very well respected for his defense and handling of a pitching staff. Everyone is baseball is touting this move as a great one for Texas. It goes to figure that with a younger staff, his value could be more important than a lot of other moves made.

Image result for jeff mathis
Photo: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Rule 5 draft is also coming up at the winter meetings. The Rangers have to protect players from that draft by next Tuesday November 20th. That means prospects need to added to the 40 man roster.  For those not familiar, this can a be important in the Rangers rebuilding process. There have been a lot of shrewd moves made with Rule 5 draft. In fact, I will be doing a podcast this weekend to talk about the draft and what it is about. If you aren’t familiar it will be a good listen. I will explain what it is and how it works. I will also discuss the history of the moves the Rangers have made, both good and bad. So been the lookout for that.

Things are starting to happen now. (Not just with the Rangers, I ate home made chili for dinner)……so………………….yeah……………….NerdOut!

Photo: Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images
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