40 Years, 40 Great Rangers

Since the expansion franchise Washington Senators decided to head to the Metroplex in 1972 we have had a chance to see some amazing individuals on and off of the diamond in Arlington. Here is my list of the greatest Texas Rangers of all-time (so far). If you don’t like it make your own. Let’s hear it for the Blue Crew.

40. Ted Williams – Manager
“The greatest hitter who ever lived” was also the very first manager of YOUR Texas Rangers.

39. Geno Petralli – C
Played six positions in his career for the Rangers. He’ll be forever linked with Charlie Hough.

38. Pete Incaviglia – OF
Hitting 30 jacks and driving in 88 is a pretty good start to a career. “Inky” provided memorable moments.

37. Chuck Morgan – Radio Broadcaster
With more than three decades under his belt Morgan is the “greatest Rangers fan” Jim
Sundberg knows.

36. Alfonso Soriano – 2B
An All-Star and Silver Slugger, Alfonso’s stay was short but memorable.

35. Gaylord Perry – P
Helped provide lethal one-two punch with Fergie Jenkins in the mid-70s. Perry was the staff ace in 1977 on a Rangers team that won 94 games. The “Spitter” did him well.

34. Oddibe McDowell – OF
The Texas Ranger known for his speed and infectious smile is tied for second of all Rangers players ever in career leadoff home runs with the first being Ian Kinsler.

33. Rusty Greer – LF
Rangers fans favorite redhead. He played the game with heart and soul and will always be loved.

32. Buddy Bell – DH
Bell came from a strong baseball lineage and received four of his five career All-Star
appearances as a Ranger.

31. Mike Napoli – C
The Rangers got the last laugh last year when they ended up with the former Angels  catcher. You can still hear the chants of NA-PO-LI when he’s up to bat.

30. Rick Helling – P
The Devils Lake, North Dakota native as dominant a pitcher during his second stint as a Texas Ranger.

29. Will Clark – 1B
Will “The Thrill” was part of the Rangers powerhouse lineup in the mid 90s. Despite injuries Clark was a standout player including batting .329 in 1994.

28. Toby Harrah – SS
The Rangers first ever shortstop saw three of his four All-Star appearances with Texas and is a member of the Texas Rangers Hall of Fame.

27. Derek Holland – P
The “Dutch Oven” cemented his place in Rangers history with a phenomenal performance in Game 4 of the 2011 World Series.

26. Mike Hargrove – 1B
The Texas Rangers’ first ever Rookie of the Year is tied for second all-time with the Rangers for leadoff home runs with eight.

25. Doug Melvin – GM
Rangers GM from 1994-2001 put together the team’s first slugging unit with Pudge, Clark, McLemore, Palmer, Greer, González, and Tettleton.

24. Kenny Rogers – P
The long tall gambler is known for two things in Texas 1) Pitching the Rangers only perfect game (July 28, 1994) and shoving two cameramen. Larry Rodriguez from FOX 4 ended up in the hospital.

23. Tom Henke – RP
The six-foot-five “Terminator” was one of the most feared closers in baseball during both his tours as a Texas Rangers and was the 1995 NL Rolaids Relief Man of the Year.

22. Jim Sundberg – C
A six-time Gold Glove winner is a Texas Rangers Hall of Famer.

21. Rafael Palmeiro – 1B
The Glove winner and Silver slug hitter hit his 500th homer as a Texas Ranger.

20. Cliff Lee – P
Provided the Texas Rangers with their first postseason series victory and struck fear in the heart of the Yankees in 2010.

19. Tom Grieve – TV Broadcaster
The Rangers former player, then GM and now color commentator has a sweet tooth that knows the game really well.

18. Mark Teixeira – 1B
Big “Tex” brought Gold Gloves and Silver Slugger Awards to 1000 Ballpark Way.

17. Elvis Andrus – SS
The second most famous Elvis we know (the other being Costello…just kidding) has quickly become a fan favorite and has seen two All-Star appearances.

16. Eric Nadel – Radio Broadcaster
Legendary broadcasting voice of the Rangers is also a member of the Texas Baseball Hall of Fame and four-time Sportswriters Association Texas Sportscaster of the Year.

15. Nelson Cruz – RF
The 2011 ALCS MVP has the MLB record for home runs in a series (6). Cruz tied the record for most postseason home runs in a season with eight.

14. Alex Rodriguez – SS
You might hate him but A-Rod was an MVP and cost the Rangers one helluva lesson for signing players to long-term contracts for exorbitant amounts.

13. CJ Wilson – P
A huge part of the Rangers recent success. Wilson had 206 strikeouts as a Ranger (sixth most in team history).

12. Charlie Hough – P
Master of the knuckleball, Hough was the first Rangers pitcher known for smoking in the dugout between innings back before they fined you for being a badass.

11. Neftali Feliz – RP
The former record holder for most saves by a rookie in a single season (40).

10. Johnny Oates – Manager
Beloved manager of the Rangers and took them to their first postseason appearance (1996) and was A.L. Manager of the Year.

9. Jon Daniels – GM
The Texas Rangers’ current GM and the chief architect of the back-to-back World Series
appearances is one of the best minds in baseball.

8. Ferguson Jenkins – P
“Fergie” was the first and only Rangers pitcher to achieve 25 wins in a single season and is a member of the Texas Rangers Hall of Fame.

7. Ian Kinsler – 2B
The three-time Rangers All-Star was the 2006 Texas Rangers Rookie of the Year and became the fourth Ranger ever to hit for the cycle (April 15, 2009) and the second Ranger to get six hits in a single game on the same date.

6. Ron Washington – Manager
The Rangers current skipper is loved by players and fans alike and we are sure going to the World Series twice in a row has a little to do with it.

5. Juan Gonzalez – RF
Perhaps “Juan Gone” was the most feared slugger in the lineup in the mid 90s. So much so that when he went to bat they played the Imperial Death March from Star Wars.

4. Josh Hamilton – LF
The best five-tool player the Rangers have ever seen and was single-handedly the Rangers’ offensive in April and May this year including going 5-for-5 with four home runs on May 8.

3. Ivan Rodriguez – C
“Pudge” had 10 of his 14 All-Star appearances while wearing a Rangers uniform and also had 10 Gold Gloves and six Silver Slugger Awards and one AL MVP Award as a Ranger.

2. Nolan Ryan – P
“The Ryan Express” threw two of his seven career no-hitters as a Texas Ranger (June 11, 1990 & May 1, 1991) then later bought the Rangers in 2009 and quickly made us forget about Tom “Effing” Hicks with back-to-back World Series trips.

1. Michael Young – 2B
Over a decade worth of service in Texas has yielded seven All-Star Games, an A.L. batting championship, a Gold Glove, and two Man of the Year Awards for the Rangers utility man. No matter where he is on the field Mike gets it done.

By Cote Bailey – contact@blitzweekly.com