Texas Rangers: Time to promote Kolby Allard to starting pitcher

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /

Kolby Allard has been one of the Texas Rangers many success stories early this season. The 23-year-old arm has been a reclamation project of sorts. This season he’s producing a 3.52 ERA with 19 strike outs and a 0.98 WHIP.

After arriving in 2019 via trade with Atlanta, Allard has had a disappointing start to his career in Texas. But he seemed to take a huge step forward in spring training this year and he’s continued it into the 2021 season.

Time for the Texas Rangers to test Kolby Allard as a starter

With Jordan Lyles continuing to struggle, now would make a good time to let Allard test the waters as a starter. Lyles has seven consecutive starts without a win, which included giving up a homerun in15 straight starts (a HR streak that thankfully just ended) .

Allard certainly wouldn’t be the first bullpen promotion this season. Hyeon-jong Yang was a top performing bullpen arm not too long ago but injuries opened the door for him as a spot-starter and things went quite well for the former KBO pitcher.

In 3.1 innings of action, the 33-year-old Yang was honed in. Throwing strikes early and only allowing five baserunners on the day. While 3.1 innings isn’t very deep into a game, it a first step in any transition to starter. His time starting may be short-lived but it’s good to see success like this nonetheless.

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Similarly, we shouldn’t expect Kolby Allard to jump right into a six inning effort his first game as a starter. This is a gradual transition and for a team more focused on developing than on winning right now at all costs, it’s a smart move to make as the Texas Rangers build for the future.

Assuming Allard is viewed as a building block for the future and not a trade piece at the deadline, developing is probably more important than preserving his trade value. Frankly, it’s not even a forgone conclusion the Texas Rangers will be major sellers at the deadline.

Texas is currently two games below .500 and playing some competitive ball. The culture is changing and Jon Daniels may opt to avoid buying or selling much this year as he grooms the character of the roster.

Regardless, With Lyles struggling and Allard somewhat thriving, this may be a good time to shake things up and test Allard as a starter.

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If the move works out, it’s good for everyone. And if it doesn’t go well, Allard can return to the bullpen and Lyles a chance to reset in the process, so it’s still advantageous.