Wednesday newsletter time: Biggest offseason task completed, Rangers dive into key week of meetings
(AP photo/Tony Gutierrez)
The biggest signing the Rangers had to make this offseason was a new manager, and they’ve taken care of that with Bruce Bochy.
It’s been been a big week for them, but not just because they hired the three-time World Series-winning manager.
The Rangers are holding their annual pro scouting meetings at Globe Life Field, a shift in location from Arizona due to the managerial search.
These are the meetings where the offseason plan comes to fruition. Yeah, the Rangers want to sign some starting pitchers, but they will have Plans A, B, C through X, Y, Z after this week.
First up, though, is a review of the Rangers’ roster and prospects who could impact the club in 2023. The best debate could be if Bubba Thompson and Sam Huff can be significant contributors, and if Joey Gallo could become more productive again in his happy place, without infield shifts and under hitting coaches Donnie Ecker and Tim Hyers.
The Rangers have some tough Rule 5 decisions to make next month. They have some non-tender candidates to evaluate.
The scouts will also uncover trade targets, some who haven’t been speculated upon by the national media. Pro scouts have a keen sense on what’s happening behind the scenes with other clubs.
And, of course, there are free agents to weigh. Everyone who follows this stuff closely knows who the big targets are — Jacob deGrom, Clayton Kershaw, Carlos Rodon, Justin Verlander — but Rangers pro scouts have nailed the mid-tier free agents the past five seasons.
Mike Minor, Lance Lynn, Kyle Gibson and Martin Perez signed at relatively reasonable prices and became great value signings. Don’t be surprised if the Rangers acquire a couple of these pitchers, including Perez, this offseason.
A big fan
Bochy said Monday during his introductory news conference how much he liked the veteran core he just inherited as well as the farm system that he said has similarities with the one the Giants rode to their three championships.
But he absolutely gushed over Globe Life Field, which this week is being transformed into a football venue for the Commanders Classic on Saturday between Army and Air Force.
“I mean, you talk about incredible,” Bochy said. “It’s the first time I’ve been here. They gave me a tour and it’s just amazing what they’ve done here, the clubhouse, and so I’m looking forward to come to work here every day. And you can’t have a better place to create this winning culture that [general manager Chris Young] wants to create and inspire these players to want to come to work every day to get better. And so we’re very lucky to have this kind of thing.”
The roof passed its first Bochy era test, too. About the time the news conference started, so did the rain. It rained hard, and it was a bit noisy, but baseball would have been played had the Rangers been playing in, say, a daytime game in the American League Championship Series.
Give it a year or two.
Rangers Today reminders
Yeah, it’s the offseason, but baseball runs 24/7/365 and the Rangers proved that Friday with the Bochy annoucement and again Monday. More news is coming in the next four months before the team heads to Arizona.
That’s reason enough to subscribe to Rangers Today for $5.99 a month, $35 for six month or $60 for the year. That’s been the price since Day 1 and that’s the way it’s going to stay, regardless of inflation.
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Coming up on the next episode, barring a change in his schedule? The new guy.
The latest episode is below.
Is this a plank or some kind of new downward dog (I have no idea why Twitter thinks this might be sensative content)? Enjoy. See you Thursday.
Peaceful Yoga is a great way to start the day…😏😂🥴🧘🦮 pic.twitter.com/jxP6DN5m8g
— Fred Schultz (@FredSchultz35) October 23, 2022
Jeff Wilson, email@example.com
I really don’t understand why there is any desire for a reunion with Gallo. Yes, he’s a very nice guy. But, his “all or nothing“ approach is not something the team needs. Especially not at Scott Boras prices. As for the coaching staff, I didn’t see that Ecker and Hyer did much to change the same type of approach in many of hitters this year, either. The most aggravating thing to see this season was for Josh Smith to come to the plate, with the tying or go ahead runs in scoring position, and see him hitting lazy fly balls that short of the warning track. The coaching staff needs to teach these guys to hit to their strengths. In Smith’s case, that’s putting the ball on the ground, and using his speed to put pressure on the defense.
Jeff, do you think the Rangers would be interested in a reunion with Nick Martinez? I think he would be a perfect fit. He could start this year and maybe next year, and then he could transition to the pen when someone like Leiter, Englert, Bradford, or Garcia is ready.