The first fanpost (recently deleted by yours truly) addressed whether or not the Mariners would be a cause for concern for the Angels. In the 2nd edition we'll concentrate more on the Texas Rangers. Same format as last time, follow along and let me know where your opinion lies.
The Rangers will NOT contend
- They have no catcher. Salty and Teagarden aren't there to get it done and haven't proven they can even stay healthy. Without a proper receiver to guide their pitching staff, the over rated Ranger arms are doomed.
- Not that the over rated Ranger arms had a chance in the first place. The only ones who believe the Rangers pitching staff is really that good is ESPN (Can I have a dollar?). Staff ace Rich Harden gets hit hard in the NL and all of sudden he goes to a hitters paradise in the AL and he's supposed to get better and stay healthy? Scott Feldman's ERA goes up a half run after the all-star break and reaches 5 in September. CJ WIlson as a starter? Yeah that'll totally work. Colby Lewis hasn't pitched in the majors since 2007 where he was lit up in Oakland. But his success in Japan will translate right? Who will rescue them? Matt Harrison and his 6 ERA?
- They are heavily depending on Chris Davis in the 5 hole behind Guerrero. That would be like us depending on Wood to leadoff. There's a place and time for these guys to bat, throwing them in the most important portion of the lineup before they've proven capable leads to failure more often than not.
- Ian Kinsler is hurt to start the year. Joaquin Arias will be their starting 2B....WHO? Yeah, exactly.
- Neftali Feliz may throw 100 in the pen, but after just 30 innings last year in the pen, he was struggling to stay at 95. What happens when he's in the rotation and after 75 innings his fastball sits at 92-94?
- In order to even compete, Josh Hamilton would not only have to stay healthy, he'd have to produce like it's 2008.
- Justin Smoak to the rescue? Let me know when your power hitting 1B hits more than 10 HR's a year in the minors and manages to hit over .250 in AAA, then maybe we'll talk.
The Rangers will contend
- They have two young catchers with promise. There's a good chance one of them is gonna step up and get it done.
- Chris Davis figured it out in AAA and came back to hit .296 in September last season, he's primed for a 30 DB 30 HR season, and he's only 24.
- Ian Kinsler will be back in a few weeks. Anyone have any problems with 30 jacks a year from their 2B?
- Elvis Andrus is only 21 and cemented himself among the elite defensive SS in baseball. Oh yeah, and he runs the bases too.
- Michael Young should compete for a batting title.
- Give me one player on the Angels with more potential than Hamilton and Cruz. And oh yeah, the Rangers got Vladdy. GIDP be damned, he's still scary and if nothing else, at least the Rangers won't be on the receiving end of his bat anymore.
- The pitching staff is young and really shined in the first half of last year. Feldman should be as good as Joe Saunders. Tommy Hunter will be back eventually, and he was solid. Neftali Feliz as a starter scares everyone. Rich Harden shut down the AL when he was healthy and with the A's, no reason to believe he can't do it in Texas.
This team has more holes than swiss cheese. Having said that, they do have talent. Borbon is no joke. Guerrero in Arlington is no joke. Davis may actually be better. They have some young arms, and if they are successful they can control the tables in the AL West race. The fact is, their pitching staff pitched way over it's head in the first half of last year and was torched in the 2nd half. They'll neither be as good as the first half or as bad as the 2nd half this year. This year isn't the year for Texas, no matter what ESPN (dollar?) tries to convince you of. Maybe in another 2 years. But right now I'm looking at a team that was fortunate to be a .500 ball club last year.