The Texas Rangers aren’t going to make it to the World Series in 2014.
I can see most fans getting really upset at that statement, calling me a pessimist, grabbing their pitchforks from the barn, and lighting their torches so they can run me out of town. While I understand that you don’t exactly want me jinxing your team, if there is such a thing, please hear me out and read the facts behind my argument.
First of all, the additions of Prince Fielder and Shin-Soo Choo were desperately needed and they both fit what the Rangers needed going forward. I have no problem with either of them (Choo’s contract not withstanding).
Adrian Beltre, Jurickson Profar, Elvis Andrus, Leonys Martin, Alex Rios and Geovany Soto return to the offensive lineup, players who will also make this defense one of the best in baseball, and should mix in well with Fielder and Choo to make the starting lineup one most pitchers will look at and do a double-take.
Offensively, this team has no holes that I can see outside of Mitch Moreland being your designated hitter but we’ll leave that argument for another day.
Where my problem lies is in the pitching that this team is currently rolling into Surprise, Arizona with. Derek Holland will be out at least until the All Star break, if not longer depending on his rehab, Matt Harrison is coming off three back surgeries this past year alone, Colby Lewis missed all of the 2013 season with no guarantee the Rangers will get anything that looks anything like the Colby Lewis of old, Alexi Ogando took three different trips to the disabled list last season including two trips in the span of about six weeks, and Martin Perez is coming off one really good season with no guarantee the “sophomore slump” doesn’t settle over him like those familiar black clouds this area sees each summer.
In review, you’re counting on an ace, a possible sophomore slump, a pitcher with one half of a good season as a starter thus far and a back you’re just hoping will hold up for 25-30 starts. Oh, and that partridge in a pear tree just happens to be a reliever who struggled in that role towards the end of last season and didn’t fare much better when he attempted it in winter ball.
Sound like the kind of pitching that can win a World Series let alone even get them there?
Can Yu Darvish possibly have a better season than he had in 2013? A year that may end with a Cy Young Award on his mantle? Could Martin Perez prove that there’s no such thing as a slump and that he’s the real deal? Can Matt Harrison show what kind of strength he still has left and show us all that even after multiple surgeries he’s still the same dominant, crafty, lefty we’ve seen before? Will Robbie Ross or Tanner Scheppers prove me wrong in saying neither guy can be affective going from the bullpen to the starting rotation?
I don’t have answers to those questions and neither do a lot of others, it’s all based on opinion which makes this such a great game to watch and tag along for during a six-month, 162-game, ride.
Are these “NFL officials” serious?
It may not be Texas sports but it deserves some sort of opinion. Missouri defensive end Michael Sam came out of the closet over the weekend and all of a sudden NFL officials believe he’s not worth a high draft pick because – he’s gay?
Here’s a question to those particular NFL officials – are you serious?
“You beat a woman and drag her down a flight of stairs, pulling her hair out by the roots? You’re the fourth guy taken in the NFL draft. You kill people while driving drunk? That guy’s welcome. Players caught in hotel rooms with illegal drugs and prostitutes? We know they’re welcome. Players accused of rape and pay the woman to go away? You lie to police trying to cover up a murder? We’re comfortable with that. You love another man? Well, now you’ve gone too far!”
Sam is one of the best defensive ends in college football and arguably one of the best at his position among those heading into the same NFL Draft just a few months from now. Dallas Cowboys fans have defended their own wide receiver, Dez Bryant, after numerous run ins with the law, and have told the media to cut him some slack. Would they have the same opinion if the Cowboys were to draft Michael Sam? Would they “cut him some slack?”
The NFL Draft is for teams to draft the best players college football has to offer and Michael Sam is, without question, one of those. Are NFL teams really going to pass on a guy who makes their defense better for no other reason than he’s not attracted to women?
If that really is true, the NFL is more lost than I originally thought. It gives me more reason to watch, and care about, more football on Saturday than on Sunday.