Texas Rangers Fall in Sports Illustrated's MLB Power Rankings
The Texas Rangers are not off to the start they wanted. They currently sit at 3-8 after dropping five of six on their road trip to the Bay Area. In Sports Illustrated's latest Power Rankings, the Texas Rangers dropped two spots to No. 25 in all of Major League Baseball.
While there's a lot more going wrong than going right for the Rangers, the sky isn't falling quite yet. Here's the good, the bad, and the ugly in the Rangers' first 11 games.
- Lance Lynn looks like a Cy Young contender. He's 1-0 with a 0.49 ERA (1 ER), 24 strikeouts, and a 0.82 WHIP in 18 1/3 innings. He is still throwing a ton of fastballs and been dominant doing it.
- Everyone has a series to forget. Even after a 1-for-11 series in Oakland, Joey Gallo's OPS is still holding strong at .912. Gallo has shown a very similar approach to the plate that we saw in 2019, which will likely mean the right fielder will be productive for the Rangers.
- Jonathan Hernández has been hyped up by manager Chris Woodward, and it's fair to say he's lived up to the hype thus far. He's earned two wins out of the bullpen and boasts a bullpen-best 2.70 ERA in 6 2/3 innings. He's not been perfect, but those turbo sinkers of his look mighty dangerous more often than not.
- Todd Frazier and Isiah Kiner-Falefa are proving to be a pretty decent duo thus far at the corner infield spots. Both are hitting very well. Frazier has a club-best .925 OPS and Kiner-Falefa is batting .333 along with some pretty solid defense at third base.
- This one isn't fair, but the rotation has been decimated by injury and fatigue. The Rangers lost Corey Kluber for a large portion of the season after only one start. Mike Minor is dealing with fatigue where he has "hit a wall" in every outing thus far. The Rangers greatest strength has been heavily damaged and not been able to give the performances the Rangers were hoping for heading into the season.
- While the offense is finally starting to hit a little more consistently, they're still not getting enough hits in key spots. Overall, the offense still ranks near the bottom of the American League in nearly every major hitting category. For a team that has their pitching staff hit hard with injuries, they have to be able to help pick them up.
The bullpen carries a 6.47 ERA into this weekend's series against the Angels. If that doesn't fall under the "ugly" category, maybe this will: 18 earned runs in 18 2/3 innings out of the bullpen during the last road trip.
We knew the bullpen had a lot of unproven arms and a couple of injuries, including a devastating injury to closer José Leclerc. The Rangers are still trying to figure out who best can fill the ninth inning role, along with the best options to even get to the ninth inning.
At this point, the bullpen is a mess, the offense isn't consistent, and the rotation has been handcuffed by injury and fatigue. That's a recipe for a 3-8 record. With the season is nearly 20 percent complete, the Rangers need to find a way to string together some wins. This upcoming homestand against the Angels and Mariners would be a great place to start.