How do you feel about the Rangers now?
ARLINGTON, Texas -- It wasn't a pretty game on Sunday, but the Rangers did manage to get a late-inning clutch hit and the bullpen made it hold up in a 5-4 win over the Angels. The victory gave the Rangers a series win and they head off to a seven-game road trip at 21-19 through 40 games on the season.
So a Monday morning question: How do you feel about the Rangers now? Is your outlook different thanks to the last four or five games and what's happening off the field?
Things to consider:
* Josh Hamilton and Nelson Cruz are close. They could be reunited in Frisco on Wednesday, in fact. Cruz will be there Monday and Hamilton could join him two days later if the CT scan looks OK. That would be two big additions to the club in the next week to 10 days.
* The Rangers aren't playing their best baseball, yet sit just a half-game out of first in the AL West. They've got a lot to improve upon, but time to do it. And despite a struggling month, they are still right where they need to be in the division.
* The bullpen remains a big question mark. Darren Oliver is logging a bunch of innings and maybe that's catching up with the 40 year old. Neftali Feliz is off the DL, but still hasn't looked like the Feliz of earlier this season. And manager Ron Washington is still searching for a reliable right-handed setup man.
* Could Ian Kinsler be snapping out of his slump? Maybe a pop up that should have been caught and a hard liner that got past third baseman Alberto Callaspo on Sunday is a good sign. He added a double down the line for a 4-for-4 day.
* The defense is last in the majors with 36 errors, picking up two more on Sunday. The Rangers are also last in fielding percentage. That must get better.
So it's a mixed bag. But after the last week, are you still very worried and expecting things to get worse or do you think the Rangers can hang on, get some reinforcements and be OK? Which area of the team concerns you the most (I'm more worried about that bullpen than even the defense at this point)?
103.3 FM ESPN PODCASTS
Play Podcast Rangers GM Jon Daniels joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to tackle the tough questions after his team failed to advance to the playoffs.
Play Podcast Nolan Ryan joins Galloway and Company to discuss having Nelson Cruz back in the lineup and how the Rangers are feeling heading into their wild-card play-in game against the Rays.
Play Podcast ESPN Insider and senior MLB analyst Jim Bowden joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to discuss the wild-card race and the Rangers' chances of making the playoffs.
Play Podcast Chuck Cooperstein joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why he feels Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish isn't an ace.
Play Podcast Elvis Andrus joins Galloway and Company to discuss the Rangers' stretch run and the morale level in their clubhouse.
Play Podcast Nolan Ryan joins Galloway and Company to discuss the latest Rangers news, including the team's struggles, Ron Washington's job security and a rumored trade with the Braves.
Play Podcast Ron Washington joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss the Rangers' dismal September, who's to blame for their September struggles and his status as the team's manager.
Play Podcast Fitzsimmons and Durrett discuss how some people are calling for the Rangers to fire manager Ron Washington.