Charlie Hough was a workhorse for the Texas Rangers

Blogged under Blast from the Past,Bloglockers,Front Page,General by chinmusic on Thursday 28 January 2010 at 10:09 am

Righty starting pitcher Charlie Hough couldn’t throw hard enough to dent a couch. He succeeded from making the ball dance without spinning throwing the knuckleball. He pitched 11 years for the Rangers and he pitched in 344 games (313 starts) in which he was 139-123 with 1 save, a 3.68 ERA and a 1.28 WHIP. Hough even knuckled his way to the All-Star game in 1986 when he pitched in 33 games (all starts) and he was 17-10 with a 3.79 ERA and a 1.20 WHIP. Hough is all over the Rangers’ record book. He is the Rangers’ all-time leader in games started (313), complete games (98), wins (139), innings pitched (2,308) and strikeouts (1,452). Hough is also #4 in games pitched (344), #9 in ERA (3.68) and he is #3 in shutouts (11) in Rangers’ history. Charlie Hough was one of the best pitchers in Rangers’ history despite rarely getting a pitch anywhere near 85 miles per hour.

The Texas Rangers are going young at 1B in 2010

Blogged under Bloglockers,Front Page,General,Positional Preview for Season by chinmusic on Thursday 28 January 2010 at 10:03 am

23-year old lefty swinging Chris Davis will battle 23-year old switch-hitting Justin Smoak for the starting job at 1B this spring. Davis has the clear lead in this competition based on his major league experience. He played in 113 games for the Rangers last season and he was 93 for 391 (.238 avg, .726 OPS) with 48 runs scored, 21 homers and 59 RBIs. His main problem has been his whiffing as he did it 150 times last season. With that in mind I never see him really having too much of a batting average but if the Rangers can accept that he could put up 35-40 homers in 2010. In 100 games at 1B last season Davis only made 3 errors which is pretty good. I think he will be able to handle it defensively even though he is a natural 3B.

Justin Smoak is one of the best prospects the Rangers have. He played in 106 games in Rookie+AA+AAA ball last season and he was 112 for 386 (.290 avg, .853 OPS) with 58 runs scored, 12 homers and 57 RBIs. Smoak does show decent plate discipline as he did walk 75 times last season.

PROJECTED GRADE FOR THE 1B IN 2010: C

The Texas Rangers sign Toby Hall

Blogged under Arrivals & Departures,Bloglockers,Front Page,General by chinmusic on Friday 22 January 2010 at 9:16 pm

The Rangers have signed 34-year old righty swinging Toby Hall to a minor league deal. He last played in the majors in 2008 with the White Sox. He has played in 686 games in his major league career and he is 616 for 2,350 (.262 avg, .671 OPS) with 211 runs scored, 46 homers and 269 RBIs. It’s a longshot that Hall will be able to help the Rangers in 2010 but it never hurts to bring in a player with his kind of experience.

The Texas Rangers designate Greg Golson for assignment

Blogged under Arrivals & Departures,Bloglockers,Front Page,General by chinmusic on Thursday 21 January 2010 at 2:53 pm

The Rangers have designated 24-year old righty swinging outfielder Greg Golson for assignment to make room on the roster for recently signed Khalil Greene. Golson played in 1 game for the Rangers last season and he was 0 for 1 with a whiff. He also played in 123 games in AAA-ball last season and he was 118 for 457 (.258 avg, .642 OPS) with 46 runs scored, 2 homers, 40 RBIs and 20 stolen bases. The Rangers will likely keep him if he clears waivers but they won’t shed a tear if some team claims him.

UPDATE: The Rangers have traded Greg Golson to the Yankees for SS/3B/1B Mitch Hilligoss and cash considerations. 24-year old righty swinging Mitch Hilligoss played in 51 games in A-ball last season and he was 38 for 163 (.233 avg, .582 OPS) with 15 runs scored, 14 RBIs and 5 stolen bases. He has now played four years in the minors and he has played in 367 games in which he is 387 for 1,406 (.275 avg., .676 OPS) with 185 runs scored, 7 homers, 134 RBIs and 69 stolen bases. The Rangers didn’t get much for Golson but the return they got is better than letting him go for nothing.

The Texas Rangers don’t seem content with the catchers for 2010

Blogged under Bloglockers,Front Page,General,Positional Preview for Season by chinmusic on Sunday 17 January 2010 at 8:17 pm

The Rangers will likely try to sign a veteran catcher or two before the season starts due to the overrated cast they have behind the plate. It all starts with 25-year old switch-hitting Jarrod Saltalamacchia. He played in 84 games for the Rangers last season and he was 66 for 283 (.233 avg, .661 OPS) with 34 runs scored, 9 homers and 34 RBIs. I’ve been reading about his potential for a long, long time but my eyes think he is a below average player all the way around. He had 7 errors and 2 passed balls in only 83 games behind the plate last season for the Rangers and that is pretty lousy. He did throw out 22% of the runners trying to steal on him and Rangers’ pitchers liked throwing to him as they had a 4.08 ERA with him behind the plate. His shoulder is hurting him right now and the Rangers are concerned about him as they prepare for spring training.

26-year old righty swinging Taylor Teagarden is an even worse player than Saltalamacchia as he has really disappointed the Rangers also. Despite glowing scouting reports, Teagarden continues to look overmatched in the majors. The Rangers should have traded him when his value was high. Teagarden played in 60 games for the Rangers last season and he was 43 for 198 (.217 avg, .644 OPS) with 26 runs scored, 6 homers and 24 RBIs. Teagarden was supposed to be a good defensive catcher but I saw no signs of that last season except his throwing arm. He made 6 errors and he had 5 passed balls in only 60 games behind the plate last season. He did throw out 34% of the runners trying to steal against him last season but Rangers’ pitchers had a 4.56 ERA with him behind the plate which was way worse than Saltalamacchia.

The Rangers tried trading 25-year old righty swinging catcher Max Ramirez to no avail over the winter. He played in 80 games in AAA+Rookie ball last season and he was 66 for 287 (.230 avg, .653 OPS) with 30 runs scored, 5 homers and 45 RBIs. With his main asset being his hitting the Rangers were very disappointed in him last year.

PROJECTED GRADE FOR THE CATCHERS IN 2010: D

The Texas Rangers bring back Colby Lewis

Blogged under Arrivals & Departures,Bloglockers,Front Page,General by chinmusic on Thursday 14 January 2010 at 5:40 pm

The Rangers have signed 30-year old righty starting pitcher Colby Lewis. Lewis has been dominating the last two seasons in Japan and he was once a highly thought of prospect for the Rangers so I don’t blame them for taking a flier on him. Lewis has pitched in 72 games (34 starts) in his major league career and he is 12-15 with a 6.71 ERA and a 1.81 WHIP. Despite him pitching great in Japan I wouldn’t get my hopes up too much.

Buddy Bell was a wizard at 3B for the Texas Rangers

Blogged under Blast from the Past,Bloglockers,Front Page,General by chinmusic on Tuesday 12 January 2010 at 2:48 pm

At the time that the Rangers acquired Buddy Bell for Toby Harrah, Rangers’ fans were not pleased. But, Bell quickly won them over with his great glove at the hot corner and his very solid bat. Bell played in 958 games in his 8 years with the Rangers and he was 1,060 for 3,623 (.293 avg, .782 OPS) with 471 runs scored, 87 homers, 499 RBIs and 24 stolen bases. Bell made the All-Star team four times with the Rangers and he won five Gold Gloves. He is to this day one of the best 3B in team history.

The Texas Rangers sign Khalil Greene

Blogged under Arrivals & Departures,Bloglockers,Front Page,General by chinmusic on Sunday 10 January 2010 at 8:46 am

The Rangers have signed 30-year old righty swinging shortstop Khalil Greene to a 1-year, $750,000 dollar deal to serve as the utility infielder. Greene played in 77 games for the Cardinals last season and he was 34 for 170 (.200 avg, .619 OPS) with 21 runs scored, 6 homers and 24 RBIs. He has now played in 736 games in his major league career and he is 628 for 2,567 (.245 avg, .723 OPS) with 322 runs scored, 90 homers, 352 RBIs and 25 stolen bases. The Rangers might have a gem here in Greene who has a lot of power for a middle infielder.

The Texas Rangers sign Vladimir Guerrero to be the DH

Blogged under Arrivals & Departures,Bloglockers,Front Page,General by chinmusic on Saturday 9 January 2010 at 9:03 pm

The Rangers have signed 34-year old righty swinging Vladimir Guerrero to a 1-year deal worth $5 million bucks + incentives. Guerrero played in 100 games for the Angels last season and he was 113 for 383 (.295 avg, .794 OPS) with 59 runs scored, 15 homers and 50 RBIs. Guerrero has now played in 1,850 games in his major league career and he is 2,249 of 7,000 (.321 avg, .954 OPS) with 1,185 runs scored, 407 homers, 1,318 RBIs and 175 stolen bases. I love this signing for the Rangers as Guerrero has always hit well in Texas.

The Texas Rangers look pretty darn solid in the field for 2010

Blogged under Bloglockers,Front Page,General by chinmusic on Thursday 7 January 2010 at 11:13 pm

The Texas Rangers will score a lot of runs in 2010. Here is what the line-up would look like if the season started next week:

C-Jarrod Saltalamacchia (if healthy)
1B-Chris Davis
2B-Ian Kinsler
SS-Elvis Andrus
3B-Michael Young
LF-Josh Hamilton
CF-Julio Borbon
RF-Nelson Cruz
DH-David Murphy

The Rangers are looking at the free agent market to try to land a catcher and a DH. Rod Barajas and Yorvit Torrealba are the top catching targets while the team has made a offer to Vladimir Guerrero. If the Rangers get one of the veteran catchers and a hitter of Guerrero’s ilk they are going to score a ton of runs in 2010.

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