Monday newsletter time: Pitching marketing might have shifted in Rangers’ favor
(AP photo/Lindsey Wasson)
The Braves were never thought to be one of the suitors for left-hander Jordan Montgomery, so their trade and subsequent extension for Chris Sale didn’t have any impact on Monty’s market.
But the Giants’ acquisition of Robbie Ray from the Mariners and the Mets’ agreement with Sean Manaea potentially do.
Two rumored Montgomery suitors landed a key pitcher in recent days. Manaea, at $28 million over two seasons, is the Mets’ third rotation addition of the offseason. Ray, who is still recovering from Tommy John surgery, is owed $73 million over three years.
Teams don’t appear standing idly by, waiting for Blake Snell and Montgomery to choose a team. Maybe teams are being told they’re out and are switching to Plan B. In case of the Mets and Giants, they’re on Plan D or E by now.
Only the Rangers seem to know what plan they’re on. Club officials don’t say much these days. They signed Tyler Mahle, though he can’t do anything to alleviate the lack of innings on the front side of the season.
The trade market might be the best way for the Rangers to go. Teams who weren’t thought to be sellers are selling, like the Red Sox and Mariners. Potential sellers haven’t sold much of anything as of yet.
The Rangers have time to add before spring training, which is still five weeks away. They can add during spring training, which they have don’t in the very recent past.
Montgomery won’t last that long. He’s still out there now, though, which indicates the Rangers still have a chance.
Meat on the deal
Local barbecue favorite Hurtado, which has a permanent stand in left field at Globe Life Field and is the official BBQ of the team, has entered into the Montgomery sweepstakes with an offer that could put the Rangers over the top.
Hurtado has offer Montgomery barbecue for life should he re-sign.
“It’s not a joke,” Brandon Hurtado said in a video released on social media. “I’m dead serious.”
— Hurtado Barbecue (@HurtadoBBQ) January 6, 2024
Montgomery probably would have been OK with Hurtado birria tacos for life, but this is the whole menu. That place is delicious — and is now in Fort Worth in addition to its original location in downtown Arlington.
Rangers Today is also looking for an official barbecue provider. My contact information is below.
Sunday Read revisited
Lexie Maddux said that she doesn’t hate analytics. She loves math and the minds behind the formulas that have moved baseball into a high-tech era but away from the things that she was taught growing up that help teams win games.
The daughter of Rangers pitching Mike Maddux has created Commandviation, a series of indexes that attempts to determine which pitchers execute their stuff the best.
Ideally, she said, teams would become interested in what she’s come up with. She hopes it’s the Rangers. She would like to see players accessing it. She hasn’t been showing off her work much, but one Hall of Famer (her uncle, Greg) and one recent minor-leaguer both approve.
Her dad also approves, though it wasn’t easy to get him over the hump. Mike Maddux isn’t a huge analytics guy, seeing them as a tool rather than the only way to do things, but Lexie still needed to convince him she had something that worked.
Now that the cat is out of the bag, so to speak, hopefully a club will take note (I’m looking at you, Rangers).
Dog did nothing wrong. Enjoy.
Good friend pic.twitter.com/VSTHiLPn4y
— Puppies 🐶 (@PuppiesIover) January 3, 2024
Jeff Wilson, email@example.com