What’s Next for the Rangers?
Now that Jon Daniels killed a couple of birds with one stone with his blockbuster trade for Prince Fielder, what will be the next move?
The trade cleared up the middle infield situation, where the Rangers got younger, and filled in a huge void for a first baseman bat (and Fielder is also much needed left-handed power).
OK, that’s great. But the Rangers still are in need of a left fielder, a second catcher and an answer to the question of who will bat as the designated hitter. Oh by the way, who’s leading off now?
Brian McCann is still the number one target in free agency for the club, but there are many suitors around the league. McCann would fill the primary catcher role with the option to play DH some games and give his knees and body a needed break. And he’s another left-handed bat. Will he be a Ranger? The Barometer says yes.
Shin-Soo Choo would look mighty good leading off the Texas lineup, but he promises to come with quite the price tag (Scott Boras is his agent). He is one of the best out there in getting on base. But the Barometer thinks he will go elsewhere instead of Texas. (mucho dinero).
Carlos Beltran is an interesting possibility for the Rangers. A switch-hitter who can play right field, he was a key player for the Cardinals last year and still has some left in the tank. Barometer likes the chances of Beltran joining Texas.
By the way, how good does that trade deadline acquisition of Alex Rios look right now? He slides neatly into left field for 2014.
Your Football Weekend
Cowboys at Giants: So the Giants have won four in a row after dropping their first six. What is it with that Tom Coughlin guy? His Giants do this every other year, don’t they? On the verge of collapse and firings everywhere. Uh huh. Are they 4-0 because they “found their fire” or could it be because they played the Vikings (who are awful), Eagles (when they were playing like dog poop), Raiders (please), and Iowa State, er, the Packers (with phenom Seneca Wallace at QB)? I’m not convinced. The problem is, I AM convinced that the Cowboys’ defense is a sieve that offenses plow through like a hot knife through butter. The carvings continue. Giants 38, Cowboys 21.
Baylor at Oklahoma State (7:00 pm, ABC): Who said the Big 12 didn’t have a championship game? Cause this is it. Baylor has boatraced every team in its path with its powerful offense and underrated defense. Guess what? They still haven’t played anyone worth a darn. Yes, that includes the Sooners. Ever been to Stillwater for a night game? Baylor hasn’t. Oklahoma State is laying in the weeds and they come out and make a statement Saturday. Cowboys 45, Bears 31.
Oklahoma at Kansas State: The Sooners (also known as Jeckell & Hyde, though that is more about who they play than their actual performance) haven’t put two good games in a row all year. No, beating West Virginia 16-7 at home doesn’t count. And two wins in a row doesn’t mean you played well in them. Kansas State has quietly played pretty well over the last six weeks, especially at home. Look for that to continue. And for OU to struggle to score points again. Wildcats 30, Sooners 16.
Kansas at Iowa State: Really? You want me to pick this game? Kansas did win last week, so they got that going for them. Can someone explain to me how West Virginia beat Oklahoma State? And then they lose to Kansas last week. Iowa State simply gets worse as the season goes on. Can Kansas win two in a row? No. Cyclones 28, Jayhawks 13.
Texas A&M at LSU (2:30 pm, CBS): While this game has no implications on who will represent the SEC West in the conference championship game, bowl implications are huge from this tilt in Death Valley. Not to mention it promises to be one of the most entertaining games of the weekend. If the Aggies go 2-0 to end the season, they’ll most likely land in the Sugar Bowl. To do that, Johnny Manziel needs to play like a Heisman Trophy winner. He will again on Saturday as the Aggies outscore the Tigers. Texas A&M 50, LSU 42.