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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

"How We Got Here" addendum...

As long as we're operating under the premise that our target audience are recent to very recent Rangers fans (4-6) years; further background on our rise to prominence still seems lacking. Although I've never technically tried my hand at actual hardcore blogging, in this day and age, social networking allows me to revisit my many, many, many sports takes on the Rangers (and all sports for that matter). Consequently/luckily/annoyingly, the goofy 'timeline' feature of Facebook lets me go back as far as 2005 (when I joined)! Now, I don't need to tell you that some of my posts (most actually haha) were spot-on, while others were slightly off. For our purposes here we'll revisit a post from 2008 and another from 2009...

Tuesday, August 12, 2008 at 12:53am  
The Texas Rangers have always taken a backseat in the DFW area and I suppose for the most part rightfully so. After all, they have produced a meager three division titles and one playoff win in 36 years. So they entered this season (as they do many) with few expectations from the hardcore Ranger fans like me and much less the casual fan. I still firmly believe this organization is just never going to get it when it comes to pitching prospects and will continue to churn out high scoring clubs because this is what fills the seats. I have to admit though that it is quite remarkable that they have put together a winning team with some (if meager and unlikely) wild card aspirations. Of course the team is only three games over .500 at the moment and that number is likely to dip again. Still, I also have to say if we are going to criticize John Daniels for trading away Chris Young, Adrian Gonzalez, and John Danks among others, we have to credit him for bringing in Josh Hamilton, Milton Bradley, and David Murphy (essentially the entire outfield). Success is still far off for the Rangers, but if they can turn our incredible depth in the farm system into pitching prospects via a trade and maybe add a C.C Sabathia/Cliff Lee, Ben Sheets, or K-Rod you never know. For now I can live with a non-last place finish and an above .500 team...

Lots to chew on here. It's worth noting that the Rangers indeed did finish the season below .500 (79-83) yet somehow still 2nd in the West. Josh Hamilton's story is mythical. We won't cover that since he's a member of the Angels now (haha). David Murphy is a projected starter on your 2013 Rangers. Milton Bradley turned out to be one of those 1-2 year projects the Mid-2000's Rangers would take a shot/minimal risk on and would later deal to produce a serviceable young player or utility player.

As a matter of freakin' fact, David Murphy is a product of such a transaction. Scandal ridden Eric Gagne' spent one pretty damn good year with the Rangers before being traded to the Red Sox for pitcher Kason Gabbard, Engel Beltre and one David Murphy. Engel Beltre is lingering around Round Rock somewhere if I'm not mistaken.

The Rangers famously traded for Cliff Lee at the deadline in 2010 for Justin Smoak, Blake Beavan, Josh Lueke and Matt Lawson. I doubt there's a scenario where the Mariners will end up getting the better of that deal, even though Lee was a Ranger for a mere half season. I mean, would you trade the 2010 AL Pennant for those players right now? Thought not...


Wednesday, April 8, 2009 at 10:01pm

I wonder if anyone else in North Texas is feeling the same optimism about the Texas Rangers as I am. Though I am not ready to say this team is ready to compete legitimately I do believe they will make it interesting for at least a good majority of the 2009 season. I would actually be pleased with at least a decent start to the season unlike last year’s disastrous 10-18 (10-15 in ’07) effort out of the gates. The AL west seems largely up for grabs as the mighty Angels seem to have fallen off a bit. What we do know about the Rangers is that they will score runs in bunches and hit their share of homeruns. The question mark is, as always, the pitching. With Kevin Millwood and Vicente Padilla in contract years, however, I see them giving their best efforts on the mound. Elvis Andrus will likely struggle at the plate but is a defensive upgrade at short as the Rangers are in dire need of a defensive makeover. The time has also come for products of trades over the last few years who have pushed their way into the startling lineup to pay dividends (Nelly Cruz, Saltalamacchia, David Murphy etc.). If our bullpen holds steady as it has over the last couple of years…I see no reason why this team cannot win 84-85 games. On the intangible side, there is just something about the karma of the Rangers in red uniforms that you have to love. Either way, look for this team to make real noise in 2010.

Lots more to chew on here! The 2009 Rangers finished the year at 87-75 (2nd in the West) and actually semi-defied me by going 10-11 in April and waited until May to dominate (20-9). Since then it's actually an earmark of Ranger teams to start off the season with a particularly hot month (no pun intended)

e.g. 21-6 month of June in 2010, 18-9 July in 2011 (the 2011 Rangers actually finished hot as well evidenced by a franchise best 96 wins that year), 17-6 April and 19-9 June in 2012.

Kevin Millwood was a work horse pitcher for the Rangers throughout his tenure. His 2009 was actually pretty solid/par for the course (13-10 3.67 ERA).

He was traded later in 2009 for Chris Ray and a player to be named later. Chris Ray would go on to be traded to the San Francisco Giants (the Rangers' eventual World Series opponent) in June of 2010 for...wait for it...Bengie Molina! You could probably make a good argument that this was Millwood's greatest indirect contribution to the Rangers.

Name that ALCS moment!

Vicente Padilla was designated for assignment in 2009 and released shortly thereafter. His 3 years in Texas were ridiculous. Plain ridiculous. I'd actually like to forget he was ever a part of our team. I curse my 2009 self for reminding me of him! Haha...


Finally, much to my delight it appears Ranger Red is here to stay.

So there you have it, Ranger fans. Another quick trip down memory lane and window into my infinite wisdom and sports clairvoyance haha. Most of all it's a taste of the reflections, triumphs, sorrows, and grievances to come we can now share on a regular basis since I now have a clear venue for them! 4 days to go...


Just for fun before we move forward here's actual video documentation of me watching and reacting to the last out of the 2010 ALCS (the aforementioned greatest moment of my 30s and maybe even my entire life hahaha)

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