Rangers Today
Featured Sunday Read

The Sunday Read: Veteran upgrades, rebound candidates fill Rangers bullpen

(AP photo/Godofredo A. Vásquez)

 

The biggest signing of the baseball offseason took some starch out of the American League West, as Shohei Ohtani left Anaheim behind by booking it up I-5 to the Dodgers for $700 million.

Pitchers within the division rejoiced.

But Ohtani’s departure didn’t lead to an influx of starting pitchers coming to the division.

The lowly A’s were busy last week, adding Ross Stripling and Alex Wood to their rotation.

The Rangers signed right-hander Tyler Mahle in December, but he won’t be ready to pitch until the summer (Tommy John surgery). The Mariners traded one of their best starters, Robbie Ray, to the Giants.

He’ll see plenty of Ohtani.

But West teams have been busy adding bullpen help. The Astros made the biggest signing by picking up left-hander Josh Hader. The Mariners and Angels have been adding bullpen pieces.

So have the Rangers, who on Monday introduced right-hander David Robertson via a Zoom call with local writers. He became the second veteran reliever signed this offseason to a big-league deal, joining Kirby Yates.

The bullpen was the Rangers’ biggest need after last season, when relievers blew more saves than they converted. They got hot at the right time, in the postseason, but to repeat as world champs, the Rangers needed to address the bullpen.

It’s worth noting that the bullpen will be in flux in the summer as Mahle, Max Scherzer (back) and Jacob deGrom (Tommy John) return from injury and, presumably, enter the rotation.

The Rangers also will have a decision to make on Carson Coleman, the Rule 5 addition recovering from Tommy John surgery. He must spend 90 days on the active roster in order for the Rangers to keep him.

As for the first half of the season, here’s how the bullpen might stack up on Opening Day.

Jeff Wilson

Sports reporter for two decades. Sports fan for life. Covers the Texas Rangers. Graduate of TCU. Colorado native. Author of Purple Passion: TCU Football Legends (https://t.co/2fmXLyympx). Follow me on Twitter at @JeffWilsonTXR

  • 1

2 Comments

  1. deGrom Texas Ranger February 4, 2024

    Kelly and Church should replace Sborz and Anderson. Sborz may have been good in the playoffs, but his combined numbers in 2023 were still bad. He needs more consistency. Jesus Tinoco was good in 2022 with Texas, and there are a few good signings that weren’t reported widely that are on the MLB.com transaction tracker. I also think David Robertson’s recent track record of performance in clutch situations should put him ahead of LeClerc, who was 2/4 in 2023 in saves and was moved out of that role in 2023 and a few years ago specifically due to blowing so many saves.

    Reply
    1. Jeff Wilson February 4, 2024

      Tinoco was reported. He walks too many guys. I don’t see him making the club. I don’t thing Shane Greene makes it either, among other signings reported. Sborz is going to be in the bullpen to start the season.

      Reply

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

On Deck