2. Where will the Rangers play in free agency?
We need guys that can hit in Texas Ranger uniforms
A few weeks into the free agency period, we’re still waiting on the Trevor Bauers, J.T. Realmutos, and George Springers of the world to decide a new team. It’s not impossible a big name FA signs with Texas, but it’s also not very likely.
So, where do the Rangers play in this year’s free agency? Rumors say the Mets are wanting to spend big along with the Yankees and Dodgers, per the usual. It is, of course, expected that the Rangers sign some players, but what talent tier of free agents should we, as fans, expect?
Since we already addressed starting pitching, we won’t go there again. Let’s look to other roster areas and address some needs.
1. A power hitter
- Solution: Marcell Ozuna, DH
- Likelihood: 15-20%
Ozuna’s name was connected to the Rangers last season before he signed a 1-year deal with Atlanta. The recently-turned 30-year-old raked in his first season with the Braves (.338/.431/.636) and now finds himself as a premier hitter on the free agent market. Ozuna alone would not totally fix the Rangers offense, but he would make it much more threatening. If the Rangers did decide to go sign Ozuna, he would slide in at DH, as he is a liability in the outfield.
Ozuna launched 18 HRs in 2020. With 62 long balls as a team, only 2 AL teams hit fewer than the Rangers in this shortened season.
2. A contact hitter
- Solution: James McCann, C
- Likelihood: 8-10%
McCann was overshadowed by stars up-and-down the White Sox lineup in 2020. He wasn’t a full-time starter, but don’t let that fool you; McCann can hit. The catcher split time behind the plate and posted a .896 OPS with 7 HRs in 31 games. That’s an immediate upgrade from the .665 OPS Ranger’s catchers posted in 2020.
McCann would not demand the monster contact Ozuna would. He could be a piece the organization adds if both sides can agree on contract duration.
3. A power/contact hitter
- Solution: George Springer, CF
- Likelihood: 3-5%
You probably get it by now… the Rangers need offense. Springer is another premier guy on the market. Regardless of how Rangers fans feel about him, Springer is good at baseball. He’s a career .270 hitter and averages about 26 HRs in a normal 162-game season.
At 31, Springer could be a corner piece of the Rangers future and the first major move in the rebuild. It’s being estimated Springer will sign somewhere for around 5 years and $125 million.