Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Crasnick: Rangers get C+ for offseason
By Richard Durrett
ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick graded the AL West for its offseason and put the Rangers at a C+. He went with that grade in light of the Michael Young situation. The Rangers would have probably been a grade point higher if not for that. Here's part of what Crasnick had to say:
The Rangers did everything they could to retain Lee, only to lose out to Philadelphia in the end. Texas has the raw materials to pitch well in 2011, but C.J. Wilson and Colby Lewis need to bounce back after logging more than 450 innings combined last year, and Derek Holland, Tommy Hunter and the kids will have to embrace the expectations raised by the team's deep run in 2010. The Rangers' bullpen logged an American League-high 503 2/3 innings last season, and manager Ron Washington and pitching coach Mike Maddux need to coax longer outings from the rotation.
Beltre is a fine two-way player and an upgrade over Young at third base, but a guaranteed five years and $80 million were a bit extravagant after Boston and Oakland dropped out of the running and Beltre's other options were scarce. Webb also did well in landing a guaranteed $3 million deal plus $5 million in incentives after pitching a total of four innings over the past two seasons. Can the Rangers count on him for 25 or more starts this season?
Rhodes will help in the bullpen. But his workload needs to be monitored judiciously now that he's 41, and the lineups are a little tougher than what he faced in Cincinnati the past two years. Napoli, who has a .931 career OPS against lefties, will help an offense that ranked seventh in the AL in OPS against left-handers in 2010.
What grade would you give the Rangers for this offseason?