Texas Rangers: Noah Syndergaard potentially the perfect offseason signing

Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports /

The Texas Rangers are looking to rebuild. After clearing the books of nearly all underwater investments, the Rangers are finally buyers. With roughly $32 million on the books for next season, and a roster comprised almost entirely of young cheap labor, Texas can target cornerstone free agents to lead their charge back to relevance.

How quickly that “relevance” is achieved is tough to say. While the future looks bright with so many young ascending stars on the cusp of breaking out, most of their hype is still unrealized potential. Jon Daniels is targeting 2023 as the year Texas becomes contenders but we’ve heard these prognostications before. That’s why building a somewhat flexible roster this winter may be in the Texas Rangers’ best interest.

From a need, flexibility, and value standpoint, there’s no better free agent for the Texas Rangers to target than RHP Noah Syndergaard.

The Texas Rangers need a short stop, we all know that. And chances are, one of those top four SS about to hit the market will be their top target this winter. But as we alluded to before, the Rangers have money to spend, and just because they spend big at SS, does not mean they can’t afford to spend big elsewhere as well.

The problem is if they spend big on a couple elite free agents who are on the wrong side of 30, and the 2023 timeline gets pushed back one or even two seasons, then the Rangers may find themselves ready to compete at the same time their most expensive players are on a decline. That would be tragic timing, wouldn’t you say?

So if some of the Texas Rangers prospects don’t pan out right away and the Rangers need to adjust their timeline, having a player or players who are easy to flip at the MLB Trade Deadline might be extremely beneficial.

The Rangers, no strangers to deadline fire-sales, have made quite a profit over the years reclaiming damaged goods, repairing them, and flipping them. Pitchers like Mike Minor, Lance Lynn and Kyle Gibson have all rebuilt their brands on team-friendly deals with the Rangers in recent years.

At age 29, Syndergaard may opt to sign a one-year deal just to prove he’s back. He could effectively rebuild his value and cash in big afterwards.

The signings have been advantageous to both players and team. Texas has now become a premier spot for starting pitchers to re-build their value. Speaking of rebuilding value – after Tommy John robbed him of the better part of two seasons, RHP Noah Syndergaard needs to rebuild his value.

Pre-injury, Noah Syndergaard was one of the hardest throwing pitchers in the game, routinely clocking over 100 mph on the radar gun and rarely giving up the long-ball.

Post-surgery, Syndergaard has thrown just 26 pitches in the past two seasons, understandably making many league GMs apprehensive about handing out a multi-year megadeal.

Pre-injury most of us would say Syndergaard was set up to cash in at the very top of the free agent market. But after Tommy John surgery it seems the ceiling on potential offers has been lowered.

At age 29, Syndergaard may opt to sign a one-year deal just to prove he’s back. He could effectively rebuild his value and even add to it since it will be a full season after the new CBA passes. Gambling a little on himself could pay off enormously if all goes well.

That’s where the Rangers come in. Texas can give him the platform to showcase his skills. They can pony up big money on a one or two year deal and if things don’t go great for the team, they can flip him. Heck, even if they don’t flip him the signing will go a long way in promoting Texas’ relevance again, which should pay dividends at the box office and the free agent market in 2022.

Obviously Syndergaard wouldn’t come cheap. He’s still a highly sought-after commodity and even coming back from Tommy John, he’s going to command top of the market prices. The key is the length of commitment. He has the potential to be a top-3 paid pitcher in baseball if he proves he’s fully back to his old self again. That’s why a short-term deal may be the optimal route for him.

It would be great for the Rangers too. Texas wouldn’t be married to anyone beyond a year or two. They could extract value by his play on the field and maybe even through a trade down the road. He gives the Rangers flexibility on their timeline and should boost their play in the process.

If anyone knows the value of a place keeper it’s Texas Rangers fans. And going all-in on a 2023 timeline could blow up in the Rangers’ faces if they don’t give themselves some roster flexibility along the way.

That’s why the Rangers need to make some investments this winter for the short-term and some for the long-term. They don’t know how their timeline will actually shake out.

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  • Published on 11/09/2021 at 13:30 PM
  • Last updated at 11/09/2021 at 13:22 PM