The Glass

Depending on your perspective as a Ranger fan after the team’s first 30 games of the season, you can look at the glass as being either half-full or half-empty…

Half-full: The Rangers are a first-place team, leading the AL West by 2.5 games at 17-11.
Half-empty: They are only 6-4 in their last 10 games.
Half-full: They didn’t lose a series until their ninth series of the season – later than any other team in baseball.
Half-empty: Of the seven teams they played in those nine series, none of them currently have a winning record (78-115 combined), and the Rangers are only 2-3 against Chicago-based teams (who are an abysmal 20-30 against everyone else).

Half-full: Starting pitchers Justin Grimm and Nick Tepesch finished 1-2 in the voting for AL Rookie of the Month.
Half-empty: After their first starts of this month, it doesn’t look like either will repeat in May.

Half-full: Another rookie pitcher, reliever Joe Ortiz, has been one of the team’s most pleasant surprises.
Half-empty: His replacement, Joseph Ortiz, has been much less effective.

Half-full: Ron Washington seems to have learned from last year, by resting veterans so they won’t be worn down late in the season.
Half-empty: Ron Washington seems to have learned nothing from last year, by continuing to exhibit an inordinate amount of in-game mismanagement.

Half-full: Nelson Cruz has done better at the plate that expected, especially given concerns about a potential PED suspension looming.
Half-empty: The Rangers would be better off with Stephen Hawking patrolling right field than Cruz, who is the biggest butcher seen on TV since Manny was killed off of “Boardwalk Empire.”

Half-full: Josh Hamilton is not making the Rangers regret his departure, having started his 2013 season as poorly (if not even worse) than he finished his 2012 season.
Half-empty: His replacement in left field, David Murphy, is one of the few players in all of baseball off to an even worse start than Hamilton.

Half-full: The aggressive baserunning which ignited the Rangers during their 2010 and 2011 runs to the World Series, but was painfully absent in 2012, has returned in 2013.
Half-empty: Even though it’s not technically an official statistic, the Rangers almost certainly have to lead the majors in TOOTBLAN (Throw Out On The Basepaths Like A Nincompoop).  It’s great to be aggressive, but even better to also be smart when doing so.

So, do you see the glass as being half-full or half-empty?  For many (including yours truly), that perspective fluctuates from game to game, if not inning to inning.  And that’s what being a fan is really all about.  Sanity rarely enters the equation – the key is to never get so crazy that you smash your glass against the wall in a fit of rage.

Bob Bland is a Staff Writer for ShutDownInning. He can be reached at or on Twitter @SDIBob.
Bob Bland

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