Mike Minor’s weapons ‘are unfair’ to hitters
At least the Texas Rangers cleared up everyone’s night early Wednesday.
The Arizona Diamondbacks scored seven time in the first inning against Jesse Chavez and added five more against Adrian Sampson in the second before the Rangers even had a hit.
It was 14-3 after two more Arizona runs in the third, not that they need those extra tallies.
The rest of the action at Globe Life Park was mostly crowd shots of kids dancing, people eating hot dogs or some just wondering why they were still at the game.
Maybe it was to see if a position player pitched. That happened, with Tim Federowicz moving from behind the plate to the mound.
It was that kind of night, though Danny Santana hit two home runs for the first multi-homer game of his career.
Here’s some Rangers Reaction from a 19-4 loss.
Playing catch up
The Rangers are off Thursday, which hopefully means the next round of drama will wait until the weekend when Stefan Stevenson is covering the team for the Star-Telegram.
On Wednesday, Mike Minor’s name resurfaced in trade rumors, and the thought of the Rangers becoming sellers was not popular with Minor or in the clubhouse.
Minor understands the business. He doesn’t want to be traded, but he’ll deal with it.
The issue is that the front office is toying with the idea of giving up on the season.
Minor is still scheduled to pitch Friday, and it’s entirely possible that he isn’t traded. The Rangers believe he is as good as he has pitched this season and won’t complain if he’s their Opening Day starter in 2020 at Globe Life Field.
However, the Rangers know that they have not cut into the talent gap between them and the Houston Astros. They knew that in the off-season when they considered trading Minor and have been debating it since Opening Day.
Even though the Rangers are flirting with the postseason, they haven’t made up any ground in the talent race.
That’s why they will strongly consider trading Minor, but only for a package that includes premium players in return. No Eddie Butler, in other words.
Daniels will have some PR to do with the players and fans if Minor is shipped out and the season goes south. That’s why Daniels makes the big bucks, though.
Only 13 days until the trade deadline. That’s plenty of time for more drama.
DeShields earns spot
An important roster decision Tuesday became lost in the hubbub over Willie Calhoun going to the minor leagues, Nomar Mazara being considered for the minors and Rougned Odor still batting under .200.
DeShields didn’t have similar luck in May, when the Rangers needed a roster spot.
Pence had forced himself into the lineup every day. Santana and Logan Forsythe were out of options and making the Rangers better off the bench. A struggling DeShields didn’t fit.
He does now, and not just because he has corrected his early-season plate woes. The Rangers need DeShields.
No one on the team can do what he does -- play premium defense at a premium position and run like few others in the game. He gives manager Chris Woodward more options late in games or even at the start of them.
The decision to keep DeShields says much about the Rangers, who have too many left-handed hitting corner outfielders but who also recognize that a playoff contender needs a player like DeShields.
Until the deadline passes, and despite four losses in a row ahead of a three-game tirp to Houston, the Rangers, technically, remain contenders.
That was not good
As was mentioned above, the actual game Wednesday was terrible.
Chavez recorded two outs in the first inning. Sampson was only mildly better in the second. The game then went to Phillips Valdez, Kyle Bird and Taylor Guerreri.
Chavez is the primary concern. He allowed seven runs (six earned) in his last start, and five (four earned) before that, and four (three earned) before that.
He doesn’t want to be judged based on only four starts.
“There’s work that needs to be done,” he said.
Chavez was viewed as the solution to one of the last two spots in the rotation but hasn’t been one. Sampson is pitching out of the bullpen until the rotation needs a fifth starter again next week.
At this point, it seems the Rangers would be better off with Joe Palumbo in the rotation and Chavez or Sampson in the bullpen.
What could it hurt?
“We talk about it all the time,” Woodward said. “I can’t say right now. He is a very valuable pitcher for us.”
The same goes for the bullpen. Joe Barlow has been promoted to Triple A Nashville, and Emmanuel Clase and Demarcus Evans are dominated at Double A Frisco. Each needs to go on the 40-man roster this off-season to avoid exposure to the Rule 5 draft.
Just go ahead and do it now. What could it hurt?
Maybe the Rangers are a couple weeks from that, once they have resolution on what will happen at the trade deadline.