Outfielder options in free agent, trade markets

With Spring Training about two months away, a few holes still needing to be filled on the roster and questions that need to be answered, now is the perfect time for an Inbox Rangers outing:

How does a review of FA and market transactions for a bond affect the OF? It feels like the picking is gradual.
— @mattlawson99

Will Josh H. Smith be trade-bound if the Rangers pick up a guy this offseason?
— @HaydenHerring12

Mancini, however, is coming off the worst year of his career with the Orioles and Astros. Profar posted a 111 OPS+ with the Padres in ’22, but he didn’t live up to the potential the Rangers expected from him when he became the club’s top prospect in ’12.

The Pirates don’t seem willing to honor Bryan Reynolds’ trade request, but he’ll cost a pretty penny if Texas wants to pursue that.

When will they re-sign Matt Moore?
— Monty_W23

Aside from bringing back Moore, what other options could the Rangers pursue to improve the bullpen?
— @texhennessy

A lot of Moore and the bullpen are related to the upcoming questions, and for good reason. Despite having two relievers under 2.00 ERA in 2022 – Moore and Brock Burke – the Rangers posted a 3.72 ERA as a staff.

The first step in improving the bullpen is bringing back Moore, who general manager Chris Young said is still in the conversation as the front office evaluates the free agency landscape or after the Winter Meeting. Moore said at the end of the 2022 season that he would love the opportunity to return to Texas, so it’s clear both sides would love a reunion.

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Elsewhere, the Rangers have long options in Burke and Taylor Hearn, but they could benefit from adding high-end options to compete with José Leclerc and Jonathan Hernández. One option still available in free agency includes Andrew Chafin (2.29 ERA and 131 games over the past two seasons).

Like Hearn, who was moved to the bullpen as a multi-inning fifth in the middle of last season, I expect Dunning, Otto and Ragans to all work in that same role, or the same, in next year.

The Rangers desperately needed pitching depth entering this season, and the importance of having those three return to the the cycle when needed is not innocent. Dunning was an assistant for a year at the University of Florida and is likely to regain his composure to return to that role, and it has been suggested that Otto may be more successful in the short term, though once or twice in a row.

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Regardless of the plan and the way it turns out, the Rangers are in a better position than they were a few years ago.

“There’s no doubt in the last two years, we’ve been at this point, where we haven’t had the depth of starting pitching, we haven’t had the quality of starting pitching that we should have. we’re lucky,” Young said at the GM Conference in November. “I don’t think you can get deep enough in your starting lineup.”

Who do you think has the best Christmas song?
— @RobinHearnTV

I don’t have an explanation for this, but the first Nathaniel Lowe struck me as someone who kills it with singing and karaoke. Marcus Semien also seems like a guy who could belt out “This Christmas.”


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