With the defection of C.J. Wilson on the last day of the meetings to division rivals, the Angels, and then a couple of days ago, the ageless wonder, Darren Oliver signing a one-year deal plus an option with the Blue Jays, the Rangers are a bit sparse when it comes to left-handed pitching.
Wilson is coming off 31 wins the last two seasons. Despite many fans angst for Wilson and his postseason failures, he did finish tied for fourth in the A.L. last season with 16 wins. He also pitched 223.1 innings. That kind of production is pretty hard to replace.
Will the eminent signing of Yu Darvish take some of the sting away? The Rangers have until January 18th to sign the Japanese phenom to a contract [after winning the posting fee for 51.7 million]. The system is broken in my opinion, but that’s a post for another day.
The industry for the most part says Darvish was the best pitcher on the market, period. Most also said they’d rather spend 100+ million on the 26-year-old Darvish than the 77.5 million on the 31-year-old Wilson.
Wilson was never returning to Arlington. He was always going home and took less money to do so. [ Apparently, the Marlins offered 6years, $98 million. So even if Texas had matched the Marlins, he still would have been pitching with the Angels.] Only time will only tell how all this works out.
PREDICTION: Darvish signs and wins somewhere between 10-14 games and pitch 150-175 innings. I don’t think he’ll match Wilson’s 16 wins or his 223.1 innings. But the overall length of the two deals, I think he’ll be better than Wilson.
Darren Oliver is coming off arguably his finest two seasons in his long career at the ages of 40 and 41. The left-handed relief pitching market is always thin, and this off season was no different. Can the Rangers resign 2011 mid-season acquisition Mike Gonzalez? He’s a Texas native, but a Scott Boras client, so the money will be steep. Plus he’s the best left hander on the market. Or if the Rangers sign Darvish, they can possibly move left-hander Matt Harrison to the pen and solve the issue.
PREDICTION: Gonzalez signs elsewhere, and Harrison moves to the pen.
As of now, the Rangers only have inconsistent left-hander Michael Kirkman, Derek Holland, and Matt Harrison on the 40-man roster with any major league experience. Do the Rangers go to spring training status quo?
Whatever the Rangers’ front office decides, they are smart and one of the finest in all of baseball. They will figure out what’s best for the club…
…whether we, couch GM’s, like it or not.
Colby Lewis RH
Derek Holland LH
Yu Dervish RH
Alexi Ogando RH
Neftali Feliz RH
Mike Adams RH
Joe Nathan RH
Scott Feldman Longman/ Spot start RH
Matt Harrison LH
Mark Lowe RH
Koji Uehara RH
Yoshinori Tateyama RH
[Note: Remember the pen was vastly different the first two months of last season than it was at the end. The pen will having some moving parts.]