The Rangers did the Math. And Math doesn’t lie.
With two-fifths of a major-league-caliber rotation, and about forty percent of the season left, they simply don’t have enough pitching to cover the rest of the year.
So, Texas signed Dallas Keuchel to a minor league contract. It wasn’t for the obvious marketing ties that come from a guy named Dallas pitching for the Rangers. It’s because they have nobody in the minor leagues ready to step up and take a slot in the rotation.
Where have you heard that before? In Rangers Nation, every year, for the past fifty years.
You’ve got to wonder how bad the pitching in the minor leagues is for the Rangers to sign a guy who has already been cut by two major league teams this year. In eight starts with the Chicago White Sox, Keuchel was 2-5 with a 7.88 ERA. Realizing they couldn’t trust him in their rotation since they have playoff aspirations, Chicago cut him. Arizona, who doesn’t have playoff aspirations, picked him up and gave him four starts. He was 0-2 with a 9.64 ERA.
Jon Daniels never saw a 9.64 ERA he didn’t like so he snatched up Keuchel once he’d cleared waivers and signed him to a minor league deal.
Maybe Keuchel can discover that same lighting in a bottle that Martin Perez discovered. Maybe he can find the form that made him the American League Cy Young winner in 2015, when he went 20-8 with a 2.48 ERA.
In all fairness, Keuchel was a quality starter just two years ago. In 2020 for the White Sox, he was 6-2 with a 1.99 ERA. His three previous seasons saw ERAs of 3.75, 3.74, and 2.90.
The Rangers are hoping that magic comes back.
Mainly, they’re hoping they never have to run Spencer Howard or Taylor Hearn out there for another start.
Nobody would have ever thought bringing back Martin Perez or Matt Moore made any sense at all, and they have been huge surprises.
The Rangers could use another one of those, please.