Texas Rangers: Searching for Answers

Perhaps Rangers Captain can get an at bat one of these days… Photo Courtesy: Darryl Briggs

By Wiley Singleton

The Texas Rangers have been awful recently. Their offense looks lost. The starting pitching is bad. The bullpen is worse. Adolis Garcia has cooled off. 

Here is how the Rangers went from .500 plucky upstart to one of the worst teams in the league over the last three weeks:

Jose Trevino cannot hit. He is nothing more than a backup catcher and has not developed at all.

David Dahl is washed up and is not playable in the outfield. The Rangers would be better off letting top prospect Leody Taveras strike out 300 times and play center field well. It looked as though Dahl would be able to recapture his Rockies glory as a decent hitter. He has not, and any success he had earlier in his career should be attributed to the Coors Field Effect.

Nick Solak has stopped hitting. Like most of the Rangers lineup, he cannot hit a changeup and is a “dead red” fastball hitter. The Rangers need Solak to develop for the rebuild to succeed. He has entered a freefall similar to his teammate Charlie Culberson. 

Charlie Culberson is a lot like Logan Forsythe as a Ranger. He had a couple hot months then crashed back down to earth. Like Solak, his .300 average was a big part of the Rangers stealing some big series against playoff teams. Since those series, he has done nothing but be a detriment to the team. His is essentially unplayably bad considering his age. 

Willie Calhoun cannot play defense. He has a sub 100 OPS+ (100 is average.) Another wasted season for Big Willie.

Jordan Lyles has been a starting pitcher reminiscent of Chan Ho Park. He is a disgrace that frequently gives up homers. He has frequent non-competitive outings. His stuff is uninspired. Even in a win he looks talentless. 

Mike Foltynewicz is another wash out from Atlanta like Charlie Culberson. Neither could cut it in Atlanta. Neither can cut it in the talent scrap heap of Arlington. Folty gives up homers all the time like Lyles. He often has blow up innings and loses control. He has no overwhelming pitch. He is merely a warm body that stands as a testament to the weakness of the Rangers farm system. Wes Benjamin is a great example of how bad the Rangers farm system is. His appearances are treated with the same enthusiasm as a dentist appointment. 

Kohei Arihara could not cut it in the MLB and is on the IL. 

Taylor Hearn throws hard but has not idea where it is going.

The same goes for Josh Sborz, who has done a terrible job closing games when Ian Kennedy is unavailable. Matt Bush and Jose Leclerc both blew their arms out before the season and the lack of bullpen depth shows. If not for Ian Kennedy, the Rangers could have the worst record in the league. Kennedy and Kyle “Ace” Gibson have been incredible this season. Both will probably be offloaded at the trade deadline.

That is what is so vexing about cheering for a losing team like the Rangers. Good players will be offloaded for young pieces that will not be seen for years. Hell, they might not be seen at all. Gibson is pitching way above his pay grade, and should be offloaded at peak value; unlike Mike Minor, who was held until his value bottomed out.

The Rangers are at an insufferable state. They have entered stunning freefall with only the prospect of getting worse. An already poor roster has been decimated by injuries. Crushing blowouts are mixed with disgusting collapses. Losses occur with the numbing consistency of a dripping faucet. 

The Rangers will continue their death march against the Twins soon.