A badly needed break. 27 comments

Ronald Guzman launces his first career grand slam in the first inning against the Orioles giving the Rangers an early lead that would soon evaporate.


Carlos Tocci getting tagged out at home by a good ten feet put an end to the Rangers first half misery in appropriate style. It was a fitting end to the game that ended the proverbial first half of the season.

The Rangers limp into the All-Star break losing two out of three to the horrible Baltimore Orioles, who have won just twenty-nine percent of its games, and just seven series so far this entire season.

They ended it like they couldn’t wait to get away.

And maybe that’s the best thing for this team. A break. Away. Far from losing day after day after day game after night game.

They couldn’t hold an early four-run lead, losing 6-5, dropping to 3-10 in July. There’s really not a lot to get excited about.

The mid-season report card is a huge F.

Look at the rotation. If you could pick any starter to build a rotation around, who would it be? Anywhere in the Rangers system? If it’s a must-win game, who starts?

If they put anyone on waivers, who would any other team claim? Cole Hamels because he has the pedigree, if not the numbers this season. But nobody else. And with his salary, maybe not even him.

Jon Daniels has assembled an ineffective, overpaid group of starting pitchers who are mostly past their expiration date.

Look at the offense. Who in this lineup would you consider an offensive threat? Who in this lineup does the opposing pitcher look at and say, “He’s the guy I need to get out”? Game on the line, who would you want to have up?

That’s not to say there aren’t a few good hitters in this lineup. But are there any scary ones? Are there any I-don’t-want-to-face-him-with-the-game-on-the-line guys?

Beltre, because no matter how old he gets, he’s still an ageless wonder. Choo, because he is on an incredible offensive run that’s truly All-Star worthy. He made the All-Star team on merit, not on quota, although he and Kela were the only two worthy of consideration at all.

Mazara and Guzman have the potential. But neither yet has the pedigree of a guy you’d want to pitch around, or a guy the manager says, “Do not let him burn you” about. They are still a season or two away from that reputation.

Who else is making the opposing pitcher lose sleep?

Elvis Andrus was before he was injured. But he hasn’t found his groove.

Profar has a good amount of RBIs for his playing time. But he isn’t “that guy.” Especially if he is batting left handed.

Odor is heading back to respectability. But it’s a long way between respectable and fearsome.

Joey Gallo is last year’s Odor. Last season, Odor was mostly worthless except for 30 plate appearances when he hit the ball out. He was a .151 hitter in all other non-home run at-bats.

Gallo ended the first half with 58 hits, 22 of those were home runs. Take away his homer at-bats, and he’s a .124 hitter. That’s not a threat. That’s an occasional nuisance.

DeShields can be a thorn in the opposing team’s side when he’s going well. He’s not. All he is now is the last guy in the lineup.

Nobody pitches around Robinson Chirinos. If he hurts you, he hurts you. But mostly he doesn’t. He’s like a nerf ball.

Kiner-Falefa is pesky. Pesky is your little brother. You don’t fear your little brother, you tolerate him.

Ryan Rua and Carlos Tocci aren’t worth the keystrokes.

It’s a team with no rotation and no serious offensive threats and not great defense.

Even though they head into the break with 41 wins, when you look at the makeup of this team, it’s actually surprising they aren’t the team with only 28 wins instead of the Orioles.

If you want to be optimistic about the first half, you could argue the Rangers played over their heads.

They’re not as good as they played.