In a matter of 24 hours, the Rangers’ quest for an impact right-handed bat faded dramatically.
Word came out that Nicholas Castellanos would be signing with the Cincinnati Reds for a reported $64 million dollars over four years.
He also got an opt-out after the 2020 season. Castellanos has been linked to the Texas Rangers since Arenado talks cooled. The thought has been that he would play first base since the Rangers outfield is essentially set.
Over the weekend, Jon Daniels did a Q&A with fans and alluded to a trade being the most likely option for improving the offense. Daniels has been known to keep his plans close to the vest. That meant the Castellanos rumors still had some life to it.
There was also some talk about the Rangers and Pirates getting together on a trade involving Starling Marte. Marte could play center field which would move Danny Santana to possibly first base full time. This was all conjecture until the Diamondbacks stepped in and traded for Marte.
All of this begs the question: Where do the Rangers go from here?
There are a couple of ways they could go. They could explore other options on the trade market or sign one of the remaining free agents and play this out with what they have.
The first name that comes to mind is Nolan Arenado. This is the one that seems the most unlikely. It’s not completely out of the question, but it is the hardest one to see happening.
Kris Bryant is another name that is a little far fetched but not out of the question. Like Arenado, he has a grievance with his current club which makes him more acceptable to a move. Bryant’s current grievance over service time is still in limbo and would make things hard to accomplish until it is over.
Both an Arenado and Bryant trade would require Todd Frazier moving over to the first base. Earlier this offseason I put out a proposal for a possible move to acquire Evan Longoria from the Giants. The Giants acquired Zach Cozart in December which gives them a third baseman. Longoria might be someone who could move across the diamond to first if Frazier is the better player at third.
Some have thrown out the name Dominic Smith. He would play first base for the Rangers. He is blocked in New York by Pete Alonso. He is a left-handed bat which sort of defeats the purpose, but he is a good hitter.
FREE AGENCY AND CURRENT ROSTER
The best options for free agency would be Yasiel Puig and Kevin Pillar. Puig is more of a right fielder. But his bat is a good right-handed bat when he is going. The nightmare might be the sideshow that accompanies him. Pillar is an upgrade in center field and also a right-handed bat.
LET’S GET CREATIVE: ARMCHAIR GM TIME
Rangers trade Kolby Allard, Leody Taveras, Cole Winn and Jonathan Ornelas to Baltimore Orioles for Trey Mancini and Brandon Bailey. Mancini would immediately be penciled in at first base. Bailey would be another RHP who could be in Frisco or Nashville’s rotation. He is also on the 40 man roster which means a better right-handed option for a spot start is now in the system.
The Rangers sign Kevin Pillar to a 2 year $12 million dollar deal with an option for a third.
OPENING DAY STARTING LINEUP
- Choo DH
- Calhoun LF
- Gallo RF
- Mancini 1B
- Pillar CF
- Andrus SS
- Frazier 3B
- Chirinos C
- Odor 2B
One question remains. Am I fired?
Featured Image: Chatsports.com/Trey Mancini