After Latest Signings, the Rangers Will Remain Active in Adding to the Roster

Chris Halicke

The Rangers officially announced their two latest free agent signings on Wednesday. The additions of Robinson Chirinos and Todd Frazier help solidify the Rangers at two crucial positions of need, both at the plate and in the field. 

Chirinos spent 2013-2018 with the Rangers, so familiarity was a huge factor in the two sides working out a deal for a reunion after a one-year stint in Houston. After missing on Anthony Rendon earlier in the winter, the Rangers engaged in talks with Frazier's camp for about a month and were able to come to an agreement on a contract.

The Rangers were also tied to Josh Donaldson, who was the best option on the free agent market behind Rendon, but Donaldson's requirement for a fourth year in a deal made the Rangers turn in another direction. Donaldson ended up signing a four-year deal with the Minnesota Twins.

At Wednesday's press conference, general manager Jon Daniels addressed if the Rangers would remain active in adding to the roster, even after bringing Chirinos and Frazier to Arlington. 

"If it's the right fit for the team and the clubhouse," Daniels said. "Across the board, we'll stay active, we'll stay engaged."

The two most talked about targets in association with the Rangers are free agent right fielder Nicholas Castellanos and Rockies' third baseman Nolan Arenado. 

Castellanos is the most likely option at this point for the Rangers. If a deal can be struck with the 27 year-old free agent, he would likely be brought in to play first base instead of right field, which is where he has been primarily for the past two seasons with the Tigers and the Cubs. 

Castellanos would give the Rangers flexibility if he came in to play first base. He has the ability to play right field, along with other current Ranger outfielders like Joey Gallo and Danny Santana, who also have the ability to move around the field. These are always valuable players to have throughout the course of the six-month baseball season.

Newly signed Todd Frazier also has flexibility, being able to play at either corner spot on the infield. This allows the Rangers to keep communications open with Colorado about Nolan Arenado.

If the Rangers don't add any more pieces to the roster, they've still had a very solid winter.

"I think we like overall what we've been able to do," Daniels said. "We can always get better, but we feel like we've got quality people at each spot."

The most significant additions the Rangers have made this winter have been in the starting rotation, highlighted by acquiring two-time Cy Young winner Corey Kluber from the Indians back in December. 

Chirinos and Frazier give the Rangers upgrades at two of three positions they needed to address this offseason. Texas was in the bottom-three in the American League in OPS at catcher, first base, and third base in 2019. Chirinos and Frazier balance out the Rangers' lineup, bringing a combined 38 home runs from the right side of the plate last season. 

"In talking with J.D. all offseason about who we're going to acquire, how and why, these guys were at the top of the list," manager Chris Woodward said at Wednesday's press conference. 

Jon Daniels and Chris Woodward like what Chirinos and Frazier can do on the field, but also appreciate and value their presence in the clubhouse.

"I think the quality of these guys separates them from everybody else," Woodward said. "The character in our clubhouse is only getting better as we keep adding pieces."

This winter was a very crucial one for the Rangers, coming off a three-year rebuild. It was going to set the tone for where the Rangers go in 2020 and beyond. It's clear they are satisfied with what they have done so far, but that doesn't mean they're done. 

Rangers' pitchers and catchers report to Surprise, Arizona on February 11th, with the first workout being held on the 12th. The first full-team workout is February 17th.

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