Dave Magadan (centre) needs to help Texas avoid a late-season hitting slump like what happened this year.
Dave Magadan, the new hitting coach charged with waking up a Texas Ranger offense that inexplicably faded down the stretch and didn’t show up for the Wild Card game, was the last batter ever faced by Ranger president Nolan Ryan during his 27-year Hall of Fame career. It’s true… look it up.
Now the question is whether Texas can bounce back and restore its AL supremacy. Reigning AL champion Detroit has already improved itself with the addition of Torii Hunter and Toronto has to move up a few rungs with the infusion of talent it landed in Miami’s most recent fire sale.
With Texas trying to figure out how to get both Elvis Andrus and Jurickson Profar into the lineup, the idea of shifting Ian Kinsler to the outfield has been raised. That would really limit his Fantasy value, so keeper league owners better monitor this situation very closely.
Of course, soon Texas will not only have the Angels and suddenly powerful A’s to deal with, but it will have to look over its shoulder at Seattle, too. Let’s face it, the Mariners have the makings of an incredibly rotation in about a year or two – especially if they opt to hang on to their 26-year-old Cy Young winner Felix Hernandez. Now, if Seattle can only find a middling offense.
- Vladimir Guerrero, 37, will not pack it in — yet. He’s down in the Dominican now, playing winter ball and ostensibly seeking MLB employment opportunities.
- We recommended Xavier Nady, the former Salinas High School star, as a waiver wire pickup in early September. Good call. Nady hit over .290 with an OPS of 871, albeit in just 41 at-bats. He disappeared in October (0-for-9), but was definitely a useful spare part in September. Nady is a free agent this winter, and it will be interesting to see if San Francisco moves to bring him back or if he’ll be forced to change unis once again.
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