Three things. 40 comments


Three welcome development in Rangers camp so far:

1. Joey Gallo’s eyes. Gallo has almost as many walks (three) as strikeouts (four). He finally got his first hit, a double. But what’s important is how well he resists chasing pitches out of the strike zone, how well he is able to get to the pitches he can do the most damage with. Really, this offense is all on Gallo. He is the star. If he is able to develop to an Adam Dunn level, where he can add a good walk rate to the power, he will be a true offensive force. The Rangers sure could use that. Dunn’s career AVG/OBP slash line was .237/.364, striking out once every 3.5 plate appearances. Gallo’s is .203/.217, 2.6.

2. Matt Davidson’s swing. Davidson went to the same swing guru that Hunter Pence went to. He broke it down and rebuilt it over the offseason. And his new swing is paying early dividends. Davidson has been a typical modern day hitter. Big big power, many many strikeouts. He is looking really solid so far this spring. He hit his second home run of spring yesterday and is scorching the ball. And he hasn’t yet taken the mound. Cross your fingers, rub your rabbit’s foot. This could be an under-the-radar stroke of genius by Jon Daniels. Matt Davidson has a ton of upside. He could be the Rangers third basemen for the next few years.

3. Carlos Tocci’s confidence. Early last season, Carlos Tocci looked scared to be at the plate, like a high school kid asking Emma Stone to the prom. A lot of that had to do with the fact he had no business facing major league pitching yet but because of his Rule 5 status, he had to be on the major league roster. His first half slash line of AVG/OBP/OPS compared to this second half:

.086/.200/.286
.282/.303/.668

He looks like a different person.

Spring isn’t about numbers as it is about results. About the process.

These three seem to be doing okay.

 

  • CrazyEd

    Good assessment Kevin. I’d like to add Guzman to the mix. I’d logged his apparent power surge to ST pitching, then I read where he’s been working on some stuff with the new hitting coach.

    https://sportsday.dallasnews.com/texas-rangers/rangers/2019/02/28/behind-changes-ronald-guzmans-swing-led-early-power-surge-rangers-spring-training?f=r

    • GT500

      Guzman is 6′ 4″ & weighs 225#…..pretty big fella

      • dearmidol

        The Dallas Morning News today has a funny picture of him standing next to Odor. 6-foot-4 next to 5-foot-6. It looks like a dad and a kid.

      • CrazyEd

        There’s a picture of him, Mazara and Gallo standing together floating around. They are in civies and it looks more like basketball or football players than baseball.

    • dearmidol

      Yes, I wasn’t meaning to ignore anyone. Just three at at time.

      • CrazyEd

        Does that mean we get three more tomorrow? I like this stuff. Digging a little deeper is good.

  • elkaba

    Spot on, Kevin. Some shiny objects are poking through all the sand. 🙂

  • CrazyEd
  • CrazyEd

    John Blake‏Verified account @RangerBlake

    A reminder that today’s game versus the White Sox is not being carried
    live. It will be broadcast via delay at 8:30 pm CT tonight on 105.3 the
    FAN and some Rangers radio network stations.

    30m30 minutes ago

    A reminder that today’s game versus the White Sox is not being carried live. It will be broadcast via delay at 8:30 pm CT tonight on 105.3 the FAN and some Rangers radio network stations.

  • Nathan Whitten

    It is great to hear that Gallo is not chasing pitches. He has shown that he has the potential to be a really good player. If he can learn to take walks, his OBP will jump. That’s not just because of the walks. Laying off bad pitches means that he is waiting for HIS pitches. So, there could be a simultaneous increase in his batting average and power numbers. All of these are tied to his eyes and how he uses them. Then we get to his defense. The guy has the physical ability to be a very good OF. Sure, we want Deshields and Tocci to improve at the plate so their speed can be used to create runs. The odd thing about all of this is that Gallo could be the best option in CF, if he is given time to learn the position. Regardless of where Gallo ends up, he should be an asset in the field. Wouldn’t it be nice to have 3 good CFs?

    We have discussed Davidson’s versatility. I am surprised to read that he could be at 3B. I thought that was Cabrera’s place. Again, it’s good to have viable options. Profar may end up being a great SS for the A’s. I do not think that he was going to be a great 3B for the Rangers. Regarding Davidson on the mound, I don’t think that the Rangers are very serious about that. Otherwise, he’d be with the pitchers some. A person cannot be put on the mound without getting his arm ready–unless you want him to hurt his arm so bad he can’t even play. I’ve heard nothing about him working out some with the pitchers, so it’s hard to take him seriously as a pitcher.

    The sub-plots of Spring Training. If one looks hard enough he can find plenty of them. Thanks for shedding some light on these 3. Nothing splashy, but some glimmers of hope.

    • dearmidol

      Cabrera was signed to play third but I would imagine it’s not going to be handed to him long-term if Davidson outperforms him.

      • SABERMETRICS MASTER

        Re-posting my projected roster posted at the beginning of the ST season:

        Player /Pos/AVG /OBP /HRs
        ———————————————-
        1. Odor /2B/0.271 /0.333 /24
        2. Andrus /SS/0.272 /0.301 /10
        3. Mazara /RF/0.272 /0.332 /30
        4. Gallo /CF/0.241 /0.342 /36
        5. Cabrera /3B/0.263 /0.334 /20
        6. Choo /DH/0.301 /0.405 /30
        7. Pence /LF/0.274 /0.283 /15
        8. Guzman /1B/0.252 /0.322 /18
        9. Mathis /C/0.199 /0.251 /2

        Bench:
        IKF /0.279 /0.331 /6
        Davidson /0.217 /0.295 /8
        Calhoun /0.265 /0.296 /5
        DeShield /0.247 /0.342 /3

        Kevin is right about Tocci. He has been turning heads in ST. However; I don’t see him bumping DeShields from the roster. Tocci could use regular at-bats at the AAA level this year.

        Gallo should have been batting clean-up since last season. He has been hitting 40+ HRs for the past couple of seasons. How many additional RBIs he will pocket batting 4th? My guess is that he could bring ~120+

        I know its too early; but Mazara and Guzman are looking extremely good at the plate in the few plate appearances I’ve seen them so far. These 2 kids were very good offensive players throughout their careers in the minors. We should have a lot of hope in them both.

        Finally, I have read somewhere about Chris Woodward’s concern for the lack of depth at the middle infield positions. Andy Ibanez might make the team and he might bump someone out of the roster. That someone might be Calhoun IMO.

        • SABERMETRICS MASTER

          Ooopss

          Just read Rangers hired Forythe. Andy Ibanez better keep up with the challenge !

          Also, Woodward mentioned he wants Choo to be the leadoff hitter.

        • grumpyderfsmagic8ball

          I’d go with Davdson at 3rd and IKF catching.

          • SABERMETRICS MASTER

            That’s a cute puppy dog in your pic.

            I think Davidson will be in the bench because he could be a reliever as well.

            IKF will see a lot of time in the Catcher’s position; but he is still learning

          • grumpyderfsmagic8ball

            I just can’t go with anyone that can’t hit over 200. He is a drag on the offense.

          • SABERMETRICS MASTER

            That’s what we all thought about Bobby Wilson in 2016.
            He ended up being clutch !

          • JacobMcCandles

            Agree

    • CrazyEd
    • WhoKnowscs

      Taking Walks is great but he also needs to know when to swing the bat. Sometimes no matter where the ball is the umpire has made up his mind that a full count pitch is going to be a strike(short of it being in the dirt or at the batter that is, this includes balls that could be in the opposing batters box.)

    • SABERMETRICS MASTER

      Hi Nathan,

      FYI … Profar will not be the A’s shortstop. He will play 2B.

  • Rowdy Yates

    “looked… like a high school kid asking Emma Stone to the prom.” Classic Kevin!

    • dearmidol

      Thanks.

  • possumrld

    Great thoughts, Kev! I am with Rowdy on the “Classic Kevin” remark. Great stuff!

    • dearmidol

      Thank you.

  • SABERMETRICS MASTER

    2-1 White Sox after 3 innings

    Miller allowed 2 runs in the 1st.

    • SABERMETRICS MASTER

      Bottom of the 5th inning; DeShield opened the inning with a single.

      Next in the order, catcher Mathis ……

      ((( GUESS THE OUTCOME )))

      • SABERMETRICS MASTER

        ….. another single !!!!!

        clap clap CLAP CLAP CLAP

        • SABERMETRICS MASTER

          Choo ground out, runners advance to 2nd and 3rd with 1 out.

          Odor is next ….

          ((( GUESS THE OUTCOME )))

          • SABERMETRICS MASTER

            Odor grounds out; but a run score after base runners advance.
            2-2 Tied Game !!!!

            Leody Taveras is next with a chance for an RBI and the lead !

            (((( GUESS THE OUTCOME )))

          • SABERMETRICS MASTER

            STRIKE OUT to end the inning

            😛

  • SABERMETRICS MASTER

    This place is quiet !!!

    Where is everyone ???

    • CrazyEd

      Watching the ball game on gameday. Sure would be nice to have some audio.

      • SABERMETRICS MASTER

        Doing the same here.

        This White Sox lineup is really weak; but our pitchers our doing what they are supposed to do.

    • Fletch

      At Mardi Gras Parties

  • SABERMETRICS MASTER

    Bottom of the 6th inning ….

    Texas Rangers minor leaguers are now playing Chicago High School players.

    Later !

  • dearmidol

    Well, that was ugly.

    • CrazyEd

      Yup!