Every year around the middle of June, baseball writers start coming up with possible trade scenarios that the team they cover can make. Whether the team is buying or selling, the social media outlets blow up from fans. Being one of those fans, I have always tried to interject my ideas in the conversation.
They used to be very one-sided and often scoffed at by the professionals. As the years went by, they were more realistic. Heck, even beat writers would give a thumbs up or maybe tweak my suggestion. Reality is that a trade needs to make sense for both teams. In a fantasy world, only the Texas Rangers benefit.
This got me thinking. What would happen if I was GM and had the power of a Jedi Master?
First, you must identify what the team needs.
Texas Rangers Needs: At least one more good starting pitcher. They also need an upgrade at catcher, third base, second base, centerfield, and a closer.
To clear room for these upgrades, you also need to free up space on the roster. That requires moving players. Depending on the contracts those player have, that could prove to be tricky. But hey – this is “GM Jedi: Return of the Nerd”.
CURRENT LINEUP WITH EVERYONE HEALTHY
(Players in bold are on the hot seat)
- Choo LF
- Andrus SS
- Mazara RF
- Gallo CF
- Cabrera 3B
- Pence DH
- Odor 2B
- Guzman 1B
- Mathis C
BENCH: Santana, Deshields, Forsythe, Kiner-Falefa, Calhoun
PITCHING STAFF WITH EVERYONE HEALTHY
(Players in bold are on hot seat)
ROTATION: Minor, Lynn, Sampson, Jurado, Palumbo
BULLPEN: Miller, Smyly, Martin, Fairbanks, Chavez, Springs, Martin, Leclerc, Kelley
I understand that this is 28 players. But this is where we have to start before my Jedi mind tricks take effect. We will end with a solid 25, who will win the west after catching the Astros.
NEXT, you have to identify the teams who will be selling or has an expendable player they can part with.
Most Likely Sellers: Angels, Seattle, Toronto, Baltimore, Detroit, Kansas City, Miami, Pittsburg, Cincinnati, San Francisco
Jedi Teams: Everyone else.
TEXAS RANGERS NEW GM “THE RECLINER NERD” GETS TO WORK!
First I call the Detroit Tigers. I am inquiring about Matthew Boyd. He is the ace of their staff. In reality, the conversation would probably start with Gallo. Next, it would move to 5 top prospects that include Crouse, Winn, and Palumbo. But this is FANTASY and I am a Jedi Master. I know that with the loss of Josh Harrison they are looking to get younger at second base. So I offer them Rougned Odor for Boyd straight up. They balk. The Rangers have someone unhappy out in the bullpen. So, I sweeten the deal by throwing in Shelby Miller and offering to pick up the remainder of his contract. (With Boyd leaving they need a rotation spot filled.) Yep, I pull a Yoda on Avila and he does the deal.
GONE: Odor and Miller
Now I need a second baseman. Most Ranger fans are thinking that Danny Santana is the obvious choice. But his value as a utility player is far better. There has been a battle for second base in Colorado between Ryan McMahon and Brendan Rodgers. The Rockies need a starting pitcher. I want Rodgers! Most likely the conversation would start with Minor or Palumbo for Rodgers. They would also seek more top prospects. But….. everyone forgets that I am a Jedi master. The initial offer is Arial Jurado straight up for Brendan Rodgers. They balk and ask for the moon. I put my finger to my temple, close my eyes, and say “accept the next offer you will”. I counter their offer.
I will send you Jurado, Asdrubal Cabrera, Diosbel Arias, Jason Bahr and $200,000.00 in international slot money. You will send me Brendan Rodgers and Nolen Arenado. Birdich repeats that entire trade back to me, in a monotone voice. Then he says, “accept that offer I will”. (Now I have upgraded second and third base)
GONE: Cabrera, Jurado
ADDED: Rodgers, Arenado
The Rangers are in need of a solid center fielder. Joey Gallo has been adequate. But his size could make him more prone to injury covering that much space. Deshields has been much better since returning from Nashville. Being a Jedi master has proven to be a great success. However, a truly great Jedi must go beyond that and do what seems impossible. Can I swing a three-team deal that favors only the Rangers? Let’s see. I call Anthopoulus of the Braves. I tell him that I think Christian Pache is the answer to his prayers and Ronald Acuna Jr is expendable. I hear a very audible curse word before he hangs up. I immediately call back. He actually answers on the second ring.
“Look, Nerd, Acuna isn’t available for anyone unless you are thinking Gallo”. I ask him if he needs a closer, (knowing well he does). The Tigers are looking to trade Shane Greene. I ask if Greene would be of interest. “They want too much”, he blurts out. So I ask him, “If I can get you a left-handed power hitter and Shane Greene, would you send me Acuna”? After a long pause I “Yoda” him. “Accept this offer you will”, I mutter in the phone. He repeats that phrase in a monotone voice. I then call back Avila with Detroit. He is already under my spell. I tell him that I am sending him Delino Deshields and Eli White for Shane Greene. “You are sending me Delino Deshields and Eli White for Shane Greene”, he mutters. Then I call back Anthopoulus. “Nomar Mazara and Shane Greene are on the next flight to Atlanta”, I tell him. ” Now send me Acuna and call up Pache”, I sing out. (This job is easy when you are a Jedi).
GONE: Mazara, Deshields
ADDED: Acuna Jr
The final pieces of the puzzle are a catching upgrade and closer. At some point, I figure that you have to look internally. Being a Jedi Master, means all the coaches throughout the organization are themselves Jedi’s. I send Jedi Julio Rangel to Dagobah with Jose Leclerc and Emmanuel Clase. Dagobah is where Yoda lived. (I had to look that up) There they learn to pitch blindfolded. Within 24 hours they can throw to any spot they want without even looking. To make room for Clase on the 40 man roster, someone has to be taken off. I convince Jeff Mathis to retire and then call Dayton Moore of the Royals. I need a catcher and he needs everything. I offer Shawn Kelley for Martin Maldonado. No Jedi tricks needed. He has a good prospect in High A and can flip Kelley in a bigger deal that includes Alex Gordon. He is rebuilding from the ground up and Gordon is 35. Jeff Mathis then becomes a roving catching instructor, teaching the art of framing a pitch.
GONE: Mathis, Kelley
Let’s get one thing straight. All of these moves would surely get these GM’s fired. To be sure that doesn’t happen, I have also done the Jedi mind trick on all ownership groups throughout major league baseball.
NEW TEXAS RANGERS LINE UP AND 25 MAN ROSTER
(All courtesy of GM Jedi, The Recliner Nerd)
- Acuna Jr CF
- Andrus SS
- Choo DH
- Gallo RF
- Arenado 3B
- Calhoun LF
- Rodgers 2B
- Maldonado C
- Guzman/Forsythe 1B (Depending on LHP/RHP)
BENCH: Pence, Santana, Kiner-Falefa
NEW TEXAS RANGERS PITCHING STAFF
ROTATION: Minor, Boyd, Lynn, Sampson, Palumbo
BULLPEN: Smyly, C. Martin, B. Martin, Chavez, Springs, Leclerc, Clase
AAA ARMS: Fairbanks, Evans, Barlow, Burke, Hernandez, Hearn
Featured Image: Futurism Media