New Rangers general manager Chris Young sparked some optimism yesterday when he said the Rangers were definitely going to be “very active” in the free agency pool this off season.
Suddenly, dreams of Trevor Story at short, Anthony Rizzo at first, Kris Bryant at third, and all sorts of images danced around our heads.
After five losing seasons in a row, the longest in franchise history, the Rangers are going to retool and go out and be competitive. They’re going to sign free agents.
Then the record skipped and reality set in.
Wait, wasn’t Jordan Lyles a free agent signee? And Mike Foltynewicz? And David Dahl? And Charlie Culberson?
Yes, they were.
Signing a free agent means nothing. When you look around at this team, and all the holes it has in the lineup and the rotation, and you look at the what’s available in the minor leagues, you realize the Rangers absolutely have to sign free agents. Where else are they going to get players to field a team?
So, don’t get your hopes up that the free agents the Rangers sign this offseason offer any more relief than the all the free agents they have signed these past five losing offseasons.
Low end placeholder free agents to plug in holes are what to expect. Why would they go out and splurge on a quality free agent when this team has no hopes of competing for a number of years?
Yes, it would be great to give Rangers fans someone to root for. But that’s not how this franchise operates.
The team has just $28 million dollars committed in salaries for 2022: Arihara $3.6 million; Jose Leclerc, $5.2 million; Rougned Odor, $12.3 million; and Elvis Andrus $7.3 million.
The only money on the books for 2023 is $6 million for Jose Leclerc.
This team is flush with cash. And devoid of talent.
It will be an interesting offseason.