The Texas Rangers continue to fill their starting rotation with buy-low candidates.
According to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, the Rangers have signed pitcher Shelby Miller to a one-year deal that, according to MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand, is incentive-laden.
#Rangers in agreement with free-agent RHP Shelby Miller on a one-year contract, source tells The Athletic.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 9, 2019
Shelby Miller’s performance bonuses can earn him an extra $3 million from Texas on top of the $2 million base salary, per sources.
— Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) January 9, 2019
Miller was once regarded as one of the best young pitchers in the game with the St. Louis Cardinals and Atlanta Braves, posting a 3.22 ERA in his first 575 big league innings. He was then traded to the Arizona Diamondbacks in a blockbuster deal that backfired immensely, as he posted an ERA over six in 2016. The next year, his career was totally derailed by Tommy John surgery that he’s only just started to come back from.
Miller is still only 28. The Rangers will hope that he can reclaim his health and find something close to the form he flashed in St. Louis. If not, it’s a one-year commitment that they can move on from easily.
The Oakland A’s have reportedly acquired infielder Jurickson Profar from the Texas Rangers in a three-team trade.
Profar is the centerpiece of the trade, with the Tampa Bay Rays also involved and several players changing teams. Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports has the details:
Full trade, sources tell Yahoo Sports:
Oakland gets: Jurickson Profar
Texas gets: Brock Burke, Eli White, Kyle Bird, Yoel Espinal, international $
Tampa Bay gets: 38th pick in 2019 draft, Emilio Pagan, Rollie Lacy
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) December 21, 2018
Profar, who has had difficulty staying healthy during his MLB career, had by far his best season last year. He appeared in 146 games and batted .254 with 20 home runs and 77 RBI. Interestingly enough, it was the Rays who expressed interest in trading for him last winter, but they did not end up with him in Friday’s deal.
Profar has two more years of arbitration before he is eligible to become a free agent in 2021. The 25-year-old is a career .240 hitter. He could either play second base full-time for the A’s or be used as a utility infielder.
The starting pitching market continues to move some at the MLB Winter Meetings, with another name coming off the board late Wednesday.
According to Mark Feinsand of MLB.com, the Texas Rangers have signed pitcher Lance Lynn to a three-year, $30 million deal.
Source: Lance Lynn and the Rangers have agreed to a three-year, $30 million deal.
— Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) December 12, 2018
Lynn figures to slot directly into the Texas rotation. He had an up-and-down 2018, posting an ERA over five with the Minnesota Twins before being traded to the New York Yankees. He improved in pinstripes, dropping his ERA to 4.14 in 11 appearances. He’s only a year removed from a 2017 season that saw him post a 3.43 ERA with the St. Louis Cardinals.
The Rangers had previously been interested in Charlie Morton as well, but he signed with the Rays on Wednesday, paving the way for Lynn to land in Texas.
If there’s any team that can relate to the Los Angeles Dodgers, it’s the Texas Rangers. And they sent the Dodgers a hilarious tweet on Sunday night after the Dodgers lost Game 5 of the World Series 5-1 to the Boston Red Sox, marking their second straight defeat in the World Series.
Here’s what the Rangers said:
— Texas Rangers (@Rangers) October 29, 2018
The Rangers lost consecutive World Series in 2010 and 2011, falling to the Giants and then the Cardinals. Losing in 2011 stings even more for Texas considering they were an out away from winning the championship before losing Game 6 in extras and then Game 7.
At least Dodgers fans did not have to endure the same heartbreak in 2018, though losing in Game 7 in 2017 wasn’t too fun.
Joe Girardi confirmed over the summer that he wants to manage again, and he has begun the process of making that happen by interviewing with at least one team.
T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com reports that Girardi interviewed with the Texas Rangers on Friday for their managerial vacancy. The Rangers fired Jeff Banister last month after another losing season, and Girardi is the highest-profile candidate they have interviewed thus far. Some of the others include farm director Jayce Tingler, Houston Astros bench coach Joe Espada and Chicago Cubs bench coach Brandon Hyde.
Girardi will likely interview for multiple jobs, and it would be a surprise if he did not land one of them. The most logical fit for him could be with the St. Louis Cardinals, who fired manager Mike Matheny this year. Girardi played for the Cardinals for a brief time during his career and maintains a strong relationship with president of baseball operations John Mozeliak.
Girardi has a career record of 988-794 and won a World Series with the Yankees in 2009. He’s also just 53, which is still young for an MLB manager. It makes sense that teams could be interested in him, and we’ve heard him linked to at least one other job in addition to the Rangers and Cardinals.
The last-place Texas Rangers are making a change in the dugout.
According to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, the Rangers have fired manager Jeff Banister with ten games remaining in the season.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) September 21, 2018
The Rangers confirmed the news shortly thereafter.
The Texas Rangers announced today that Jeff Banister has been dismissed as the team’s manager. Bench coach Don Wakamatsu has been named interim manager for the remainder of 2018 season effective immediately.
— John Blake (@RangerBlake) September 21, 2018
Benister went 325-313 in a four-year tenure as Texas manager. That included two playoff appearances, though the Rangers failed to win a series in either year. He had one year remaining on his contract and after a 64-88 season, the Rangers clearly saw fit to simply move on now and get the building blocks in place with a new manager ahead of their move to a new stadium in 2020. As Banister was one of the managers with shaky job security, this doesn’t come as a huge shock.
Adrian Beltre has a full no-trade clause and is reportedly only willing to waive it to play for a contender, which is exactly what the Atlanta Braves are at this point. Does that mean the Braves and Texas Rangers could work out a deal?
According to Jon Paul Morosi of MLB.com, the Rangers and Braves have discussed a trade that would send Beltre to Atlanta. Beltre has not said publicly whether he would be open to playing for the Braves, and Morosi has been told he would prefer to either return to the Boston Red Sox or be sent to the Houston Astros or Cleveland Indians.
The Braves already have a full-time third baseman in Johan Camargo, but it’s possible Atlanta could be interested in a platoon in which Beltre faces left-handed pitching.
Beltre, 39, is hitting .292 this year with five home runs and 33 RBI. He’s having an impressive season given how old he is, and he could potentially help a playoff contender like the Red Sox, who just sent regular third baseman Rafael Devers to the disabled list.
We have heard of at least two other teams that are interested in Beltre, and the list could grow even more heading into Tuesday’s trade deadline depending on the Rangers’ asking price.