I figured it was time for a Texas Ranger Q&A session. Especially with the trade deadline ending on Monday, August 31st.
We asked Ranger fans to submit questions via Twitter, email, and Instagram.
Here is what we got!
Get your questions in. Only a couple of more hours before he cuts it off. pic.twitter.com/TpIzRUVULH
— Rangers Nation (@RangerNationDAL) August 29, 2020
Adam Gordan via (Twitter): Would the Rangers do better if the minors had been able to play this year?
Yes! I say that for two reasons.
First of all, you would actually get to see what talent is developing and who to bring up. I understand that the 60 man taxi squad play intrasquad games every day. But that isn’t real game situations. Watching Leody Taveras play in Frisco against other teams prospects, is a better evaluation than him hitting off of the same rotation of taxi pitchers every week.
Second, those same prospects can be evaluated by other teams which helps them in the trade market. Teams might pull the trigger on a deal having seen the guy they want in person as opposed to a video of him playing intrasquad games.
Jason Worthen via (Twitter): Once the deadline passes, you think we will see some DFA’s similar to last year with Asdrubal Cabrera? (Make room for more youngsters to come up)
I sure hope so. I think if certain players are not moved by Monday, then their time as a Texas Ranger should come to an end. But me wanting that and it actually happening are two different things. There are certain players that will most likely be let go. The most obvious one is Jeff Mathis. He won’t start another game unless there is an injury.
The Rangers also can’t keep three catchers. Here are some other names that could be let go. Ian Gibaut, Derek Dietrich, Luis Garcia, Yadiel Rivera, and Adolis Garcia. Some long shots would be Rougned Odor and Todd Frazier. Chances are that if they wanted to get rid of Frazier he would be traded.
There is also one name to watch that could compare to Cabrera from 2019. Should this guy not get traded and the Rangers fall far out of contention, Shin-Shoo Choo might get DFA’d to play younger guys. It would be mutual between him and the Rangers, and he would get signed by someone quickly. They owe Choo that respect to not do it without his blessing. He would also not want to sit on the bench for a losing team. But watch out, this team might surprise some people in the second half. Don’t be floored if they go on a winning streak and play spoiler to some playoff contenders.
Jeff Green via (Twitter): What are the chances Joey Gallo gets moved?
Otis Mitchell Jr via (Twitter): Will Joey Gallo be traded?
I decided to answer both of these because they go together. First to Otis. I say no he is not being traded. (But never say never) With that in mind, let’s answer Jeff’s question.
The chances of Joey Gallo being moved are about 1% to 5%. Any Joey Gallo deal would be a huge blockbuster trade. If a blockbuster trade is made, it signals the Rangers are in a total rebuild mode. I personally do not think they need to totally rebuild this thing. They have some holes to fill, but not enough that requires tearing it all down. However, If Jon Daniels was to get two or three major league ready players in return, I would listen. Especially if one of them is a legit 1 or 2 starting rotation prospect.
Example: If the Tigers wanted to part with Casey Mize as the centerpiece of a deal, I might perk up. But that’s not gonna happen. So Joey Gallo will be a Ranger heading into the offseason. All bets are off then.
Charles Hilliard via (Twitter): Would you take on bad contracts to acquire top-level prospects?
I like this one because it is asked as if I am the billionaire owner who has to approve of such a deal. So, as the acting billionaire owner of the Texas Rangers, I am always looking for creative ways to get talent. I would certainly consider eating your bad contract for the right prospect.
Now let’s be more realistic: The current Rangers ownership has not had a steady stream of income in a season with no fans. To top things off, the oil and gas industry is also suffering right now. That means their other business isn’t as profitable as usual. My guess is that with such a deal, they would also require the other team to take on Odor to offset the cost.
My guess is that a bad contract for a bad contract is far more likely. But I wouldn’t bet on it happening.
Steve Farrar from Saginaw via (Email): Do you think this ownership will sign any top tier free agents this offseason? (If the owners don’t sign any noteworthy free agents I think they should sell the team) What do you think?
First of all, next year the free-agent market isn’t nearly as good as this season was. You had Anthony Rendon and Gerrit Cole at the top of that list. But there were other notable free agents the Rangers could have pursued that they didn’t. Players like Josh Donaldson and Marcell Ozuna. This year, who are the best players heading into free agency at positions the Rangers might be looking for?
Here is the list: starting pitcher Trevor Bauer, First Baseman Yulie Gurriel, second basemen Cesar Hernandez or DJ LeMahieu, third basemen Justin Turner or Zack Cosart, SS Marcus Semien, and outfielder George Springer.
Of course, there are players already on the Rangers to fill some of those roles. Leody Taveras could make George Springer an afterthought. Maybe Nick Solak solidifies second base. If I were Jon Daniel I think Trevor Bauer is my top target. Mike Minor will also be a free agent and might be cheap. I think they also entertain signing a first or third baseman. But if I had to predict, I think they look to make a blockbuster trade to upgrade the team. Nolen Arenado and Kris Bryant come to mind. I will say this. If the Rangers don’t spend in free agency or take on a contract via trade, then yes the ownership group should sell the team. It’s worth over $1.1 billion more than they paid for it. Take the money and run.
Gabriel via (Instagram): Do you think Elvis will be asked to change positions next year? Isiah Kiner-Falefa has looked good at short. What are your thoughts?
This is an interesting question. I doubt they will ask Elvis to move for IKF. I have stated multiple times that at this very moment, IKF is the best defensive SS on the team. That doesn’t mean that he is the one to move Elvis over to another position.
Then the question becomes what position? My guess is you are thinking a move over to third base. That would seem logical since he is already on that side of the field and the throw would be closer to the one he had to make at SS.
The problem is that your third baseman needs to either hit for average or have power. Elvis has never really had power and his average is down this year. Second base is another option. He is a far better hitter than Odor and the transition to second isn’t that bad. Most second baseman have played SS at one time or another. The problem with second base is that I think the Rangers might feel Solak is the heir apparent there.
My guess is that Elvis is either the starting SS here next year or for another team. He is good enough to be this teams starting shortstop. However, he is better as a 7, 8, or 9 hole hitter now. But that question of moving him is a good one.
Jeff Simmons via (Facebook): Do you think we should trade Lynn and send Odor to the minors.
No and no, but let me clarify. This team was on the verge of competing for the AL West. Had the rotation lived up to the hype, this team would probably be right there with the Astros. I still believe that, with the current putrid offense. But the injuries to pitching have killed this team.
So on your Lynn question, I would say you need to have an ace to compete and he is one. Plus he is cheap at only $9 million. If the Rangers went out and got Trevor Bauer, I like those two along with Kyle Gibson at the top of my rotation. But the lineup needs to improve drastically.
In regards to sending Odor to the minor leagues, you can’t do that. I wish the Rangers could. However, Odor has enough big-league service time to refuse an assignment to the minor leagues. That means he can say no and the Rangers would be stuck with a tough decision. They would be forced to leave him on the big league roster, trade him, or DFA him.
Nobody is going to trade for him because of the contract. Plus they could just wait for him to clear waivers and pick him up as a free agent. The Rangers would still be on the hook for his remaining salary. Rougned Odor will either be a very expensive backup player or virtually free to another team. My guess is that he is let go after the season.
Matthew Buchanan via (Facebook): Should the Rangers trade Lynn or keep him and hope to compete next year? I’m not expecting them to make any moves in the offseason so will this team compete next year with an aging pitching staff and SS? I just don’t see them competing without trading and rebuilding.
I answered the Lynn question in my answer to the previous question. But I will again. I don’t think they should trade Lynn because I think they are very close to competing.
To your other point, I do think they will make moves this offseason. They expect fans next year, and they now realize that they need an upgrade at certain positions. The most likely way to upgrade will be through trades. But I can see them making a push for Trevor Bauer and possibly re-signing Mike Minor again. He would be cheaper and I think he likes it here.
You can’t decide on a total rebuild off of this season. Injuries have decimated this team. They need bats at the corner and a quality outfielder/DH. I would like to see them trade for Kris Bryant and sign George Springer along with Bauer. A trade for Edwin Rios would be nice also.
Sue Kennedy Stinson via (Facebook): What does next year and the future look like for the Rangers?
This is a good one to end it on because it has so many layers and could go so many directions. I personally do not think the outlook for next year’s team is as bleak as most Rangers fans.
First of all, this year’s team was riddled with injuries that went deep into their depth. Had things gone as planned, when Kluber went down they would have grabbed Joe Palumbo or Brock Burke to take his spot. Burke and Palumbo also went down with injuries and that hurt. Because the way Jordan Lyles has pitched, he would have been moved to the bullpen by now if either of those guys were available. With that being said, this team has some major offensive deficiencies. Especially at the corner infield positions. Todd Frazier has been good, but I think the Rangers would like to see more pop from that position. Plus they need to get younger. IKF has been a serviceable third baseman, but he has more value as a middle infielder or super-utility guy.
If the Rangers don’t trade Lance Lynn then they go into next year with an ace and another good starter in Kyle Gibson. They can go get rotation and offensive help this offseason through trades and free agency. That would leave depth in the minor leagues with players like Josh Jung, Sherton Apostel and Justin Foscue on offense.
They also have a few starters on the cusp like Jason Bahr, Cole Wynn, Ricky Vanasco, and Hans Crouse. To me, that looks good going into 2021. But the Rangers need to be players this offseason. They have to be linked to free agents and trade partners. Ownership owes that to the Ranger fans.
That’s it – Thanks for all your questions
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