Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas


January 12, 2013

Wills: Are the Rangers better off than last year?

Texas should be fine and will continue to strive to be the best

Corsicana — What to make of the Rangers’ turbulent offseason in which they won baseball winter meetings as far as headlines — even though they didn’t do anything besides sign reliever Joakim Soria and trade the face of the franchise, Michael Young.

Only to lose the offseason when every big free agent signed elsewhere — the best pitcher, Zack Greinke to the Dodgers, and the best hitter, their own guy, Josh Hamilton, to the rival Angels.

Only to recover nicely with the additions of Lance Berkman and A.J. Pierzynski, two veteran left-handed hitters who, if healthy, could use Rangers Ballpark in Arlington as their home-run hitting gallery.

Which ultimately leads to this question five weeks away from the opening of Spring Training — are the Rangers better off, or worse off, from the ballclub that lagged to the finish line last season dazed and confused and choked away the American League West. The year ending for Texas with only Yu Darvish showing up in an AL Wildcard game loss to the Baltimore Orioles.

Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said what you would expect him to say this week on ESPN 103.3-FM radio in Dallas when asked about the Rangers’ 2013 roster as currently constructed.

“We really like our club,” Daniels said. “We’ve got some work to do and address some needs. You could move some of your core players or change the look of your team, but the more we looked at it the more it didn’t make sense for what we were doing. Our commitment to our fans, our ownership and our players is to be in this every year.”

So should Rangers fans expect a team that can contend for the World Series in 2013?

A nice nucleus is still here — Darvish, Derek Holland, Matt Harrison and Alexi Ogando form a solid start to the rotation. Darvish’s performance in the Wildcard game alone offers confidence he is ready to be an ace.

The top of the batting order with shortstop Elvis Andrus, second baseman Ian Kinsler, Berkman and third baseman Adrian Beltre are as good as any in baseball. It’s the best infield in the game.

The bullpen should be one of the best in the game. A healthy Joe Nathan is dependable. And Soria, if he recovers from Tommy John surgery, will be one of the best free-agent pickups of the offseason.

And the Rangers still have moves they can make.

Free agent outfielder Michael Bourn and pitcher Kyle Lohse, two solid players, are still on the market. Trade rumors involving Arizona All-State outfielder Justin Upton will continue to swirl around the Rangers and Diamondbacks.

Colby Lewis and Neftali Feliez should return around the All-Star break. No one should underestimate how crushing it was to not have either pitcher around as the Rangers blew a huge division lead in September.

Daniels isn’t guaranteeing anything, other than to say the Rangers should be fine and will continue to strive to be the best.

“I can’t tell you what year we’re going to make it to the World Series or win it, but our goal is to have a chance every year,” Daniels said. “We don't want to make moves that would cut our legs out from under us and close that window. We really thought there were a lot of good players on the market. Let’s pick up the right veteran guys that fill our needs at certain spots; we feel we’ve done that.”

Text Only
  • Area schedule for the week

    Here's a look at this week's schedule for Golden Ciircle teams and Navarro College. The schedule does not include upcoming bi-district playoff games in softball because times and sites have yet to be determined.

    April 18, 2014

  • BG baseball GC Baseball/Softball: Blooming Grove sweeps Rice in baseball and softball

    Blooming Grove's Lions needed this one.
    Heck, they need all of them.
    That's where they're living today on the Blooming Grove diamond, where everyone knew going into Friday's game with Rice that the Lions need to win their final three games to have a chance of nailing down the final playoff spot in District 23-2A.
    One down, two to go.
    “It's in our hands,'' said Blooming Grove Coach Matt Anderson moments after his kids beat Rice 8-0 Friday night. “As long as we take care of our business we'll be fine.''

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • GC Softball/Baseball Roundup: Frost girls win district title

    Frost's Lady Polar Bears needed to win to nail down the district title and they never trailed, jumping out to a 7-0 lead en route to an 11-7 clinching victory over Itasca Friday on the road. They wrapped up their second district title in a row with a 9-1 record and enter the playoffs next week at 13-1.

    April 18, 2014

  • CHS Baseball/Softball: Whitehouse sweeps Tigers in baseball and softball

    The Tigers lost a tough game to Whitehouse, 11-3 as the Wildcats' ace, Pat Mahomes, who went four innings and gave up all three runs on two hits and five walks

    April 18, 2014

  • GC Basketball/Baseball: Mildred's Connor Hill sees life clearly

    There was never any doubt for Connor Hill, never any question about what he would do or how he would do it.
    Sure, there was that meeting with his mother and father and talks with the doctor when he was 10, talks and meetings that came accompanied with worry and concern.
    But never from Connor.
    He just never dwelled on the fact he played sports with one eye. He didn't worry or talk about it when he was 10 and he never talked about it at Mildred High, where Hill emerged as a star on the basketball court and baseball diamond.

    April 18, 2014

  • Frost Lady Polar Bears Area Champions.jpg GC Track & Field: Roundup — Frost girls win area meet

    The Frost Lady Polar Bears made a shambles of their district track & field meet last week, scoring 206 points, and they were dominate again in the area meet Thursday, scoring 162 points to win the meet at Blooming Grove.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • RON MORGAN.jpg Morgan:The new endangered species

    Am I just that old, or have amateur athletics gone absolutely nuts these days? On second thought, don’t answer that unless it’s yes to the nuts part.
    High School and college basketball are on the verge of being totally ruined by AAU basketball. Top roundball prospects are identified by the junior high level if not earlier.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • GC Track & Field: Area meet Roundup

    Corsicana's Gilfillan wins 4A area pole vault title; Frost girls win 1A area team title, Frost boys finish second

    April 17, 2014

  • GC Baseball: Mildred falls to Riesel, 9-0, on the road

    Mildred managed a hit and struck out 12 times in a 9-0 loss on the road that could have given the Eagles some cushion in the 23-2A standings. They are now 5-6 with a game at league-leading Teague Tuesday.

    April 17, 2014

  • 4-18-14Roman.jpg CHS Soccer: Tigers boys and girls top off season with strong showing on All-District teams

    That tough and gutsy style of play sent both the boys and girls teams into the playoffs and on Thursday the Tigers were rewarded again for their fine seasons as two boys won special honors,four boys were named to the All-District first team and two girls earned first-team honors.
    Michael Roman, who did a little of everything — and did it well — was named the District 28-4A Utility Player of the Year, and sophomore defender Jesus Barreto was named the district's Newcomer of the Year.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo