There’s no doubt that the Texas Rangers sit in a much better position now than they did a year ago. But there’s one exception to that — Prince Fielder. The 32-year-old designated hitter has had a rough start to May and it’s time to move him out of the clean up spot in the lineup.
Going into this season, the outlook for the Texas Rangers’ offense was anemic. Last year was so frustrating with so many guys going down with injuries and not a whole lot of moves made in the offseason, there wasn’t a whole lot to look forward to this season.
But fast forward to today, 64 games into the season, and things are still looking incredibly better for the offense. Prince Fielder has become the hitter everyone thought he would be when the team made the trade a year-and-a-half ago. Joey Gallo has shown the potential he has once he gets used to facing major league pitching. And Delino Deshields, though now on the disabled list, has come out and taken the leadoff spot.
And once Adrian Beltre and Josh Hamilton return from the disabled list here in a few weeks, this lineup could easily be the most feared line in all of baseball.
For the past year-and-a-half or so, the Rangers trade with the Tigers for first baseman Prince Fielder looked like a complete dud.
Fielder only saw the field for 42 games last year, hitting just three home runs and batting in only 16 runs before ending his season with neck surgery. And then this year got off to a rough start. At the end of April, Fielder had only one home run, five doubles and 10 RBIs as people wondered if the Rangers had made the right move.
But since the calendar turned to May, Fielder has gone, dare I say, Josh Hamilton (pre-2012 obviously) for the Rangers. In this month, Fielder has hit eight home runs and driven in 25 RBIs while posting a .701 slugging percentage headed into Tuesday’s game at Cleveland.
Over the last week or so, the Rangers have shown signs of life. As of Monday night’s win, Texas has won six of its last eight games, including a three-game sweep of the Houston Astros on the road. The offense has come alive as well, scoring 39 runs in that stretch. Monday night, the Rangers belted three home runs for the first time in a while.
And while the team is still only in fourth in the division and six games behind Houston, there are a number of signs that the Rangers can at least make a run at it this season.
Apparently, all it took for the Texas Rangers offense to finally get going was a little addition by subtraction.
After it came out Thursday that first baseman Prince Fielder would undergo surgery to help his hurting neck and would be out for the rest of the season, people were predicting that this was the final straw for the Rangers this season. I’ll even admit that I didn’t see this team doing much after that debilitating news.
While the pitching staff goes through some pains–Martin Perez being out for an extended period, Matt Harrison with another back issue Tuesday night and not getting Derek Holland back until mid-to-late June at the earliest, it’s going to have to be the offense that leads this team to getting more consistent and getting back in the AL West race.
There was so much to look forward to going into this season for the Texas Rangers’ offense. The addition of Shin-Soo Choo and Prince Fielder were the offseason acquisitions general manager John Daniels needed to make.
But through eight games this season, it hasn’t exactly gone the way most thought it would.
By now everyone knows of the Rangers’ trade with the Tigers sending second baseman Ian Kinsler up north for power-hitting first baseman Prince Fielder. Considering the fact that Nelson Cruz is more than likely head out, it was a much needed move to sure up a weakened and depleted lineup.
But as Bloat the blowfish in Finding Nemo realizes, “Now what?”
Well, David Schoenfield wrote for ESPN.com Monday that the next move for the Rangers should be to sign free agent Shin-Soo Choo. And after reading that article, it all makes sense.
Wednesday evening, it was reported by CBS Sports and then confirmed that the Texas Rangers would be trading second baseman Ian Kinsler to the Detroit Tigers for Prince Fielder and $30 million. Talk about sending shock waves around the baseball world.
At first, I was skeptical about it all. While Fielder is a great hitter, he hadn’t been that great in the postseason, as seen by the now infamous flop into third base in the ALCS against Boston. And Kinsler was a great base-stealing threat.
But after thinking about for a couple of days, I think this trade is going to be a good one for the Rangers.
Are you interested more about what I do? Want to learn more about my web development and design? Curious about my writing? Use the buttons to view what I’ve done in my portfolio, read my blog and to contact me directly to learn more about what I can do for you.