Friday, August 26, 2016
When the Rangers came to power back in June, there was a lot of 'hmmm', 'eeeerrghh', 'I don't knowww..' in regards to the team's chances to stay on top. I mean, this was a pretty lopsided division, with even the teams in 2nd and 3rd having to fix severe structural issues, so the Rangers were probably going to walk away with it, but they still had a few injuries, and their main problem was their lack of a strong catcher, with Robinson Chirinos struggling to stay healthy, and Bryan Holaday and Bobby Wilson unsuitable, non-hitting options.
Enter Jonathan Lucroy.
Now...with a strong catcher adding to the already-strong remainder of the lineup, and Yu Darvish and Colby Lewis shortly returning to the already-tight pitching staff...the lead's secured. The Rangers might actually waltz to the end.
Lucroy's been hitting pretty well for the team, and even the newest addition, Carlos Gomez, is actually back to his Milwaukee progress in his three games with the team. This is now a more complete, fuller, more powerful team, and even with the Mariners on a slight incline since the end of July, they may just give the Rangers the AL West title now.
This is a team that's been at the very top, and very bottom of the league...and has made the right moves to get where they are right now. This is a young team, with enough veteran players to keep the credibility high. Cole Hamels, Adrian Beltre and Ian Desmond are having some amazing seasons when nobody really thought they would. Hamels is a sleeper Cy Young candidate, Beltre just made his HOF chances a tad better, and Ian Desmond has proved he's got more depth from being a power hitter from Washington.
I'm already predicting that this will be a very heated postseason, because the Rangers will be out for blood. They may not be the fun choice like the Cubs that all the bandwagoners can get behind...but they can win games like nobody else can.
Coming Tomorrow- An outfielder who's been traveling a bit lately, and is doing some nice work in Denver.