Friday newsletter time: Rangers follow trade deadline with sweep
(AP photo/Michael Ainsworth)
ARLINGTON — The trade deadline made clear that the Rangers and White Sox were clubs headed in different directions for the rest of this season, and that’s how it played out.
The Rangers swept three games from the White Sox, whose rotation and bullpen were decimated by trades. The deals might have had a hangover effect on the White Sox, who made mental mistakes and didn’t have a ton of punch at the plate.
The trades the Rangers made also had an effect. Rangers players were crisp, their bats woke up and the pitchers were terrific, possibly buoyed by the additions of Max Scherzer and Jordan Montgomery.
It’s not necessarily that the team needed a kick in the tail. The acquisitions, though, told the Rangers that the front office believed in them and believed that with a few more tools they could win the World Series.
That’s got to make a group of guys feel good.
The Marlins are up next, and they’re not bad. They haven’t been very good the past month, so the Rangers might be catching them at the right time.
Montgomery will make his Rangers debut tonight and be followed by Jon Gray and then Andrew Heaney. The Rangers will take the field up 1 1/2 games in the American League West after Scherzer recovered from a dicey first inning Thursday afternoon in a 5-3 victory and the Astros lost Thursday night at Yankee Stadium.
Despite the despair some might have felt last week on the field, things are suddenly trending upward for the Rangers.
Perez to the bullpen
The move that manager Bruce Bochy announced Thursday morning wasn’t much of a surprise, if we’re being honest.
Martin Perez has not pitched well for much of the season, but especially of late. Heaney and Dane Dunning, especially Dunning, have been better.
That’s the way baseball go.
Perez worked out of the bullpen some in 2021 with Boston, the season before he signed with the Rangers and turned into an All-Star. He has a role he can fill, giving the Rangers innings out of the bullpen and possibly making a spot start or two.
His demotion to the bullpen won’t be the last, assuming Nathan Eovaldi returns from the injured list. Heaney or Dunning will be joining him, assuming someone else doesn’t need a turn on the IL.
A team can never have enough pitching, right?
Card of the Week
Since this is Max Scherzer Week, it’s only fitting that the Card of the Week be related to the former Fort Worth Cats right-hander.
Remember, he was drafted 11th overall by the Diamondbacks in 2006, but they thought he was injured. Hence, the three-start trial with the Cats to show he was healthy.
Scherzer spent the first two seasons of his career with the Diamondbacks before being involved in a massive three-team trade with the Tigers and the Yankees.
So, Scherzer is in a Diamondbacks uniform in his 2008 Bowman Chrome Draft rookie card, which is the Card of the Week.
This one is available on eBay and not part of my collection. My son wants one, so I’m guessing there will be one arriving soon enough.
And then the first one of Scherzer in a Rangers uniform.
Got to stay hydrated. Enjoy.
Half-time water break…😂😂 pic.twitter.com/DPLd4u69Yl
— 𝕐o̴g̴ (@Yoda4ever) July 31, 2023
Jeff Wilson, firstname.lastname@example.org