Publish date:

2 RANGERS

Author:

OVERALL RANK 4

ENEMY LINES

A RIVAL SCOUT SIZES UP TEXAS

Cole Hamels pitched great in that small ballpark over in Philly. If you can do that, you can pitch anywhere.... Yu Darvish came over from Japan with seven pitches, and they're trying to eliminate some of them because they think this had something to do with his health issues. If he's going to bounce back, this is the year.... Martín Pérez is the biggest question mark in the rotation. He has great feel, but he shows some apprehension, like he doesn't trust his stuff.... [Starter] Tyson Ross was a great signing, even though he's still recovering from surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome. He had been outstanding before that.... Matt Bush has a power fastball and he's got a second chance. I think he's going to eventually be the closer.... Jonathan Lucroy is the best two-way catcher out there. He'll be tremendous for this staff. When they have to run Dillon Gee or A.J. Griffin out there, Lucroy's value goes up even more. If you're a marginal pitcher, catchers like him can make you average.... I don't want Rougned Odor to improve his plate discipline. I know we want guys to control the zone and walk more, but some guys you want up there hacking.... Other than Brooks Robinson, Adrián Beltré is the best third baseman I've ever seen, a first-ballot Hall of Famer. He's got great hands, the cleanest exchange, can throw from all angles.... Nomar Mazara's smooth, sweet swing reminds me of Carlos Delgado's—consistent, no wasted effort. He's going to hit for average and eventually power.... As much as I love Joey Gallo's moonshots, he swings and misses too much.

MANAGER JEFF BANISTER

3RD SEASON WITH TEXAS

B-T BA OBP SLG WAR

CF CARLOS GÓMEZ [INJURY RISK]

R-R .231 .298 .384 0.1

DH SHIN-SOO CHOO [INJURY RISK] [DECLINING]

L-L .242 .357 .399 0.3

3B ADRIÁN BELTRÉ [TEAM MVP] [DEFENSIVE STAR]

R-R .300 .358 .521 6.4

1B MIKE NAPOLI [NEW ACQUISITION] [INJURY RISK]

R-R .239 .335 .465 1.0

2B ROUGNED ODOR [BARGAIN] [RISING]

L-R .271 .296 .502 2.4

C JONATHAN LUCROY [DEFENSIVE STAR] [BARGAIN]

R-R .292 .355 .500 3.8

RF NOMAR MAZARA [BARGAIN] [RISING]

L-L .266 .320 .419 0.4

SS ELVIS ANDRUS

R-R .302 .362 .439 3.7

LF JURICKSON PROFAR [INJURY RISK] [RISING]

S-R .239 .321 .338 0.0

BENCH

B-T BA OBP SLG WAR

C ROBINSON CHIRINOS

R-R .224 .314 .483 0.9

OF RYAN RUA [DEFENSIVE STAR]

R-R .258 .331 .400 0.7

W--L ERA K/9 WAR

LH COLE HAMELS

15--5 3.32 9.0 5.0

RH YU DARVISH [INJURY RISK] [BARGAIN]

7--5 3.41 11.8 2.5

LH MARTÍN PÉREZ

10--11 4.39 4.7 1.8

RH A.J. GRIFFIN [INJURY RISK]

7--4 5.07 8.1 0.8

RH ANDREW CASHNER [INJURY RISK]

5--11 5.25 7.6 -0.7

SV ERA K/9 WAR

RH SAM DYSON [INJURY RISK]

38 2.43 7.0 2.9

RH MATT BUSH [RISING]

1 2.48 8.9 2.1

NEW ACQUISITION

2016 STATS

(R) ROOKIE

TEAM MVP

DEFENSIVE STAR

INJURY RISK

BARGAIN

RISING

DECLINING

MODEST PROPOSAL

Four years after being the consensus No. 1 prospect in baseball, Jurickson Profar is now a platoon leftfielder with a career .652 OPS. It's been a rough ride for Profar, who missed two full seasons with shoulder injuries and never had a chance to displace Elvis Andrus at his primary position, shortstop. He's now an outfielder because there's nowhere else for him to play, which isn't ideal for either his development or the Rangers' hopes. The team should look to move him as part of a package for a starting pitcher or a true outfielder, both to add wins in 2017 and to allow Profar to get on with his career as an infielder.

BOTTOM LINE

Don't underestimate this perennial playoff team, but the division has improved. Have the Rangers?