The cat is out of the bag now. The Texas Rangers are officially in a developmental phase, which apparently isn't quite a rebuild, but has elements of a rebuild.
Jon Daniels, freshly signed to a contract extension, laid it out Thursday in more detail than he had at any point since the end of last season.
The Rangers haven't shipped off their veterans for prospects and to slash payroll (no rebuild), but young players will likely replace any veterans dealt at the trade deadline (rebuild).
The upcoming offseason will likely be a repeat of the last, when the Rangers didn't extend themselves financially and finished off their roster with value signings. Consideration will be given to keeping their own veterans or signing more high-end free agents if the fit is right.
Winning games is the goal, but preparing young players to win for years to come is too.
But what about the veterans? More specifically, what about Adrian Beltre and Elvis Andrus?
Both said that they aren't in a position to think about what they will do this offseason, but they have decisions to make and the ability to win games could be a factor in their future plans.
"I'm thinking about getting back on the field," said Andrus, who hasn't played since April 13 (broken right arm). "After that, we'll see how it goes in the offseason.
"I expect to win, for sure. I'm not expecting to just go out there and be OK and develop. I want to win. I'm here to win."
Andrus can opt out of his eight-year, $118 million contract after the next two seasons. The teams that can pay him to the kind of money he is making from the Rangers are loaded up at shortstop, and the way the market developed last offseason might convince him to stay put.
Andrus believes these Rangers can still get in the playoff hunt. That would become some kind of development.
"I see it from the way that we need to get on a hot streak to get into contention," said Andrus, who expects to come off the 60-day disabled list June 18. "There's still a long way to go. Our team is all young guys, but they have experience already. They're young, but they already have some time and they know how to be productive."
Beltre, considered a trade candidate at next month's deadline, is in the final year of his Rangers contract. He's 39, and 2018 is the 21st season of his career. He has already been on the 10-day DL twice this season because of a strained left hamstring, and he also had two DL stints in 2017.
No matter how many milestones he piles up, the only thing that matters to him is winning a World Series. With time no longer on his side, he could decide to chase a title elsewhere in 2019 if he opts to continue his career.
"I can't look ahead," Beltre said. "I'm thinking about this year, and then I'll look at next year. I can't think about next year yet. We're not even 100 games in.
"We go to the field every day to win. On paper, we may not have the best team compared to the other teams, but we go out on the field looking to win."
The young guys aren't trying to not win, and winning games is a critical part of development. And development isn't all on the coaching staff.
"You have to develop winning players," manager Jeff Banister said.
At some point, each veteran learned when he was young from a veteran. Passing on his knowledge is part of the gig, and passing it on also helps him achieve the goal of winning games.
That's not something a veteran needs to be told to do. He knows. Beltre has been doing it for a decade, maybe longer. In his 10th season, Andrus is getting that chance now.
It will remain their duty whether they stay with the Rangers after this season or head elsewhere.
"Their investment is also in their legacy of how the communicate, talk and help with these young players," Banister said. "Each one of those veteran players, I promise you, has had somebody invest in them the same way they're investing in these young players, and it helped those guys win. They understand the value in it.
"Treat it the right way and have each guy invest in each other the right way. That's how chemistry of the team becomes stronger. The culture becomes stronger. The core group becomes a tighter core way. Houston's club was that way."
Banister mentioned the Kansas City Royals, too. The past three World Series winners — the Astros, the Chicago Cubs and the Royals — went through the growing pains of a rebuild far worse than anything the Rangers are experiencing this season or plan to experience in coming seasons.
Maybe the development phase ends in 2020, the first year of Globe Life Field. Maybe the Rangers' next window to win a World Series won't open until 2022.
That uncertainty, currently under way and on tap for at least 2019, could impact what Beltre and Andrus decide to do this offseason.