We are now in late January, which means that it’s time for teams to assess whether or not they will give into Scott Boras’ contract length for his free agents that might put their team over the top. Michael Bourn and Kyle Lohse (both Boras clients) remain unsigned; Bourn coming off his second all star season while Lohse finished 16-3, led the NL in starts, and finished with a 2.86 ERA. What’s not to love? Well, his age and length-of-contract demands for one thing. Lohse appears to want a deal of 4 years, at the age of 34, essentially setting himself up financially for life. Teams aren’t so sure that he’ll continue to produce at the level of the last 2 years (noting poor performance the 2-years prior).
Enter the Texas Rangers. This team has had a pretty rough offseason, losing Josh Hamilton (arguably the most talented player in baseball when healthy) to free agency, and dealing Michael Young (arguably the leader of the team and face of the franchise the past decade) in a trade. They added Lance Berkman (health question to say the least) and A.J. Pierzynski (solidifying the catcher position). But most experts agree with the Oakland A’s surprising success last year, plus the Anaheim Angels reloading, Texas needs to make a move.
The Rangers have a lot of questions at the back end of the rotation. Will Alexi Ogando be a 30-game starter? Who will fill the #5 role until Colby Lewis (who, by the way, is 33 years old) comes back (ETD June)? Will Matt Harrison continue his rise to stardom? Will Yu Darvish be able to handle the innings load? Will Neftali Feliz come back in the second half? The answer to these questions is that Kyle Lohse provides some needed depth to the staff. He’s used to pitching in warm weather and taking the ball every 5th day. And winning and keeping the other team from scoring. What’s not to like?
Oh yeah, the little questions about how much you have to pay him in 2015 and 2016. It’s my opinion that the Rangers will likely be past their window and rebuilding then. While you hate to mortgage the future for the present, this might be the time to do it. We’re essentially in a game of chicken, will the Rangers or Boras blink first? I predict the Rangers.
- Dave (@lhd_on_sports)
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