Texas Rangers: Get Jacob deGrom, Andrew Heaney

The Texas Rangers are all smiles after reeling in a big catch this off-season. Photo Courtesy: Dominic Ceraldi

By Wiley Singleton

For years the Texas Rangers have lacked pitching. It has been a systematic problem within the organization since they came to Texas in 1972. They chose to remedy this problem finally by signing the best pitcher in baseball, Jacob deGrom, to a five year, 185 million dollar contract. The deal includes a sixth year option. deGrom has an electric fastball and an insane 92 MPH slider with extreme run. He also has a nutty 90 MPH changeup and a curveball he rarely throws. His only weakness is chronic arm trouble. He has injury problems and is always elite when healthy. The question is if he can make 30 or more starts consistently throughout his time in Texas. The Rangers now have a true ace; a pitcher they can feel confident in starting a playoff series and Opening Day.

The Rangers also added lefty strikeout specialist Andrew Heaney. Heaney has a very high strikeout per 9. He throws a ton of sliders. He is great when healthy but has trouble staying healthy. deGrom and 3rd starter Jon Gray also share this flaw. If the Rangers rotation can stay healthy it will be exceptional. 

Martin Perez is coming off of a career year. He accepted a qualifying offer of 19.5 million for one year. He probably will not be as good as he was last season, but should still be solid. 

The Rangers also added Jake Odorizzi. He was a solid top of the rotation arm 4 years ago but has struggled since. The Rangers got him for almost nothing. With Dane Dunning being the 6th man in the rotation, the Rangers look to be competitive from the pitching end every day. 

Nick Solak was dumped for cash. He was worthless and the Rangers got hosed, giving up Pete Fairbanks for him. The Rangers let Charlie Culberson and Kole Calhoun walk. They were both useless.

The Rangers offloaded deadweight and added pitching. This is a step in the right direction, but they still need to add an able outfielder and maybe one more consistent B tier pitcher for insurance.  As it stands, this is probably what an Opening Day roster will look like:

Marcus Semien – 2B
Corey Seager – SS
Nate Lowe – 1B
Adolis Garcia – RF
Josh Jung – 3B
Mitch Garver – DH
Jonah Heim – C
Leody Taveras – CF
Eli White – LF 

Starting Pitchers
Jacob deGrom
Andrew Heaney
Jon Gray
Martin Perez
Jake Odorizzi
Dane Dunning

Brock Burke
Brett Martin
Jonathan Hernandez
Jose Leclerc

This would be a solid team, but lacks outfield depth. Considering how injury prone many of the starters are, the Rangers will need to add another pitcher and maybe another bullpen arm. There are still some pitchers out there in free agency: Carlos Rodon and Michael Wacha are two names that make sense in Texas. As it stands the Rangers are an 85 win team.