Texas Rangers Spring Training: My Top 10 Observer-ations

Categories: Texas Rangers

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10. Pitchers and catchers report today. Means backyard pool parties and bikinis can't be far behind.

9. Whatever happens the first week of camp, it can't be more shocking than a year ago when manager Ron Washington announced that he had snorted cocaine the previous season.

8. Last year's motto: It's Time! This year's: 3 More Wins! I'm curious to see if the defending American League champs with the reigning AL MVP have a swagger about them this spring. In the past it's always been a barrel full of ifs.

7. Not that there aren't still ifs, right Brandon Webb?

6. The first time new third baseman Adrian Beltre dives to his left, stops a grounder down the line and throws to first for an out, the Rangers will be a significantly better defensive team.

5. If first baseman Mitch Moreland can consistently hit lefties, the Rangers will be way ahead of the game. No more wondering if/when Chris Davis can hit an off-speed pitch will be one less headache.

4. I'll be out in Surprise in March and, like all of us, I'll dissect and nitpick spring training to the smallest fiber. But, remember, a year ago at this time the Rangers were counting on Jarrod Saltalammachia behind the plate, Scott Feldman and Rich Harden on the mound and Cliff Lee was a Seattle Mariner. Translation: A lot can/will change by mid-July's trade deadline.

3. I fear the Rangers are going to miss Clint Hurdle. Not only as an aggressive hitting coach, but also as a sounding board in the clubhouse. Reminder, Thad Bosley is now the team's third hitting coach in three years.

2. Regardless of where he plays -- center or left -- isn't it going to be impossible to take the aggression out of Josh Hamilton? Still, Julio Borbon locking down center would go a long way toward saving Josh. Hamilton staying healthy and MVP productive is one of the biggest keys to the season.

1. Just like you knew he would, Michael Young -- unhappy or not -- will report to Surprise, Arizona Saturday on time and conduct himself like a classy professional. "I expect Michael to be here," Washington says. "No doubt."


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15 comments
ron mexicans
ron mexicans

nobody talks about the mystery at catcher? what the hell are they getting from that pos? teagarden and traener are spot starters at best.

Oldobbie
Oldobbie

I like Oganda;he's got a rocket arm,hopefully we can get something for M.Young's sorry self...

Davy Crockett
Davy Crockett

It's the same old song and dance with me: Starting pitching.

I'm not worried about the offense or bullpen this year. For reasons I can't explain, I think Colby will be just as solid as last year. I do worry about CJ, Webb and whoever else fills out the rotation. That's just me though.

kergo
kergo

RW Wrote:7. Not that there aren't still ifs, right Brandon Webb? 6. The first time new third baseman Adrian Beltre dives to his left, stops a grounder down the line and throws to first for an out, the Rangers will be a significantly better defensive team.

Kergo Says:7)Isn't Napoli an if?6)True.....but the first time he goes 0 for 15, this team will be "not so great" offensively.

I see ALOT of questions here. I'm still trying to figure out how they are better w/o Clee, moving Mike Young and w/o Vlad the Impaler. Couple that without Frankie acting as a bridge to Nefti, and you gotta pray everything works perfect again; or you are looking at #3 in the AL West.

Someone tell me how they are better

Rooster
Rooster

The first time new third baseman Adrian Beltre dives to his left, stops a grounder and throws to first for an out, the entire Ranger fandom will be saying, "Mike who?"

Scruffygeist
Scruffygeist

If Beltre is diving to his left to stop a shot down the line, does that mean he's playing ass-first toward the plate to protect his twig and berries?

Mishon
Mishon

Not sure how the Rangers are going to be a significantly better defensive team w/o having Cliff Lee.

P1Steven
P1Steven

Brandon Webb is the x-factor

Josh's broken records
Josh's broken records

I told everyone last year (pats myself on the back) that CJ would not only win a starting job .. But he would also excel at it. Don't worry bout CJ, he has his mind on the free agent contract he's finally getting a chance to nail down..another big year as a starter and he probably triples the FA contract he wouldve signed if he had of stayed in the pen..Mark it down brother, if healthy CJ and Colbyashi will again lead this team to the playoffs. (and if we're out of it at the trade deadline..we have anything a contender would need SP/RP or MY..and I hate to think of it, but if the MVP was put on the market..he could bring back more than Tex's sorry ass)

Josh's broken records
Josh's broken records

Kergo, first of all..you know I love you in a not RW kind of way..but..did Nap screw over your sissy or what? He wasn't brought in to play everyday..if Mikey is traded or Moreland pulls a Kris Davis, then his playing time will increase..pretty sure that JD doesnt plan on Nap hitting 3rd and getting 700 ab's..he's a gamer/clubhouse guy whom mashes (the A's) lefties.Young will be tougher to move than Clee was to re-sign.Loved Vlad until the WS last year, will love watching Beltre stopping balls at the hot corner this year..instead of Mikey waiting for a cutoff throw from LF.Same story as the past 40 years, the way I see it..Good hitting/suspect pitching. (just like last year began, except we're better at Catcher, 3B, Closer, 1B and push at DH)

Brian Tams
Brian Tams

You forget the fact that the Rangers were already running away with the division before they acquired him, and that he only pitched once in the AL championship. The Rangers may have had a harder time of it in the playoffs without him, but they still would've made it. Just like they will this year.

Josh's broken records
Josh's broken records

This Cliff Lee you speak of, did he play CF or SS or 3B? We'll miss Clee, but how'd he improve the defense the 4 other turns of the rotation?

Scruffygeist
Scruffygeist

Good point about CJ's contract. Colby's also in a contract year, isn't he? I think I remember his being a 2 year deal, I could be wrong.

I was way, way off about CJ cutting it as a starter. I predicted utter failure, and I'm glad I was wrong. This year I predict Feliz stays in a closer role.

jerrahs rug
jerrahs rug

Colby signed a 2 deal deal with a third year as a team option. The next two years I believe he is owed somewhere in the $3 million range per season. Great signing.

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