If the Texas Rangers have had more pitching performances like they got last night, they might be a team looking at going to the postseason right now. In what was an unlikely power surge for them, the Rangers were on the cusp of being in possession of a wildcard slot before the All-Star Game. The question about whether the Rangers should be buyers or sellers was at the forefront. Going into this season, it was fully understood that the Rangers were going to continue to dismantle the team and rebuild.
With the Rangers behind by 5 games at the moment and the deadline quickly approaching, there still hasn’t been an answer. It’d likely be in their best interest to sell, because even if they buy or stand pat, it’s not a sure thing they get in. Dealing Mike Minor would be a no brainer to me, as he’s at the top of his market value. They may wish to consider parting ways with Lance Lynn as well. A Hunter Pence trade, along with Shin-Soo Choo would make sense, too. Choo just listed his mansion for sale, so read into that might be something or nothing.
Casual Rangers’ observers will balk and wonder why trade those guys, but I don’t think they’re going to see any of them with their value this high. All of them are aging veterans who would immediately help a contender, but the Rangers are a team looking at the future, or at least should be.
With all that said, it has to be for the right prospects. Trading just to trade doesn’t work either. While the Rangers try and figure that out, the Athletics are half a game back of going to the postseason. If the postseason began today, the Rays and Indians would be playing in the Wild Card Game, leaving the A’s and Red Sox a half game back.
They acquired Homer Bailey for depth from the Royals recently. It’s so Oakland to go cheap and pick up Homer. However, there have also been rumblings about Stroman, Syndergaard, and possibly Mike Minor going to the A’s. Bailey gets the call for the A’s tonight, while the Rangers counter with Adrian Sampson. Head below for our free Rangers vs. Athletics pick.
Texas Rangers vs. Oakland Athletics Pick:
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You might think a 5.42 ERA is downright terrible, but for Homer Bailey, that’s keeping his career afloat and not bad considering how low he was. It’s not good, however consider the fact that his ERA was at 6.09 and 6.43 the last two years. The year prior to that, he posted an ERA of 6.65 in six starts with the Reds. He had some good years in Cincinnati, but a lot of it was forgotten about because of the conclusion of his career there. With the Royals, Bailey was okay with an ERA of 4.80, so yes his numbers have gone up since arriving in Oakland. He’s posted a 12.38 ERA in two games for the A’s.
His most recent outing was an embarrassing attempt against the Astros, as they battered him for 8 hits and 9 earned runs in 2 innings. When he has confidence he can be alright, enough to chew up some innings, but when it’s gone things can get out of control. Following that poor showing, expect his confidence to be in the tubes again tonight. The Rangers have taken care of Bailey, with a .326 and .404 OBP in 86 at-bats. Gallo is out after undergoing surgery for a broken bone in his wrist, but it shouldn’t matter against Bailey.
Adrian Sampson has been just as bad of late. Bailey owns an ERA of 9.00 with a 2.00 WHIP in his last three games, while Sampson has been worse with a 9.82 ERA. He’s allowed 11 runs in just his previous 6.2 innings pitched. On top of that, the road has been a disaster for Sampson, as he’s posted an ERA of 7.97 and 1.77 WHIP in 40.2 frames as a visitor. The A’s have been solid with a .274 batting average and 11 runs scored on Sampson in 62 at-bats. Expect a high-scoring contest, or at a minimum, enough runs to put this contest OVER the total.