It’s a new era of sports in DFW and the Texas Rangers have already proved doubters wrong as they currently hold second place in the AL West.
The past two years certainly have been heartbreaking for the Metroplex. The Cowboys, Mavericks, and Rangers have all lost the faces of their respective franchises with the retirements of Tony Romo, Dirk Nowitzki, and Adrian Beltre.
The most surprising turnaround has to be the Texas Rangers, whom many people including myself wrote off after finishing 2018 in last place.
Long story short, they fired Jeff Banister and brought in the young coach from the Dodgers to take his place, Chris Woodward. The new skipper has changed the persona of the team and is now on track to land a wild card spot come time for the postseason.
There must be something about those coaches in California and their success. Woodward has almost made as big of an impact in his first year as manager as Rams head coach Sean McVay had in his first season. Both are offensive minded guys that have turned their franchises around.
Woodward has formed the young team to become coachable, while each having their own special talents. The biggest surprise has to be what they are getting out of the local kid, Hunter Pence.
Gallo has finally returned after missing the past three weeks and has picked up right where he left off. Gallo is having his best season so far batting .273 with 17 home runs. That’s a huge jump from his career batting average of .213.
The Rangers have also had major success with Ronald Guzman, Elvis Andrus, and Danny Santana, as they all have shined with their defensive play.
Andrus and Santana stand out in particular as they rank in the top five of the team offensively, providing some much needed sparks for the team when needed.
Then there’s the fantastic pitching by Mike Minor who through 17 starts holds a 2.40 ERA and has gone 8-4 when he’s on the mound. Outside of Minor, there’s not much at all for the Rangers. The pitching has been shaky all season long and Minor has been the lone bright spot for the pitching staff.
Unfortunately, there are rumors swirling around that the Rangers may trade Mike Minor as the MLB trade deadline is quickly approaching. Hopefully Jon Daniels doesn’t make the mistake of trading him because it would probably kill any chance of the Rangers being successful in 2019.
Another negative, Rougned Odor is batting under .200, which is rare for any player who’s not a pitcher to hold. He has suffered a major decline in production after signing a massive six year contract extension with the Rangers in 2017. Due to the size of his contract, it makes it extremely difficult for Texas to trade him somewhere else.
The only hope for Rougie is to go back down to the minor league and transform his swing and his approach at the plate and make it back come time for the postseason.
There isn’t many negatives for the young Texas Rangers as they approach the All-Star break holding a 44-36 record. They currently have a 16.3% chance to make the postseason, according to Baseball Reference.
The Texas Rangers have a legitimate chance of making a run in the postseason thanks to Chris Woodward and company. The final year at Globe Life Park may be hosting a World Series once again. This time around, it may come out with a shocking Rangers victory, sending the stadium and its memories out with a bang.