What Could Be

**ORIGINAL POSTED DATE 7/16/12**

One of the greatest parts of the baseball season is the trade rumors that begin in June and last until mid-August. Social media sites like Twitter make it even more exciting and frustrating at the same time as every writer out there wants to be the first with the latest “news” and that also means numerous fake insider accounts will pop up leading fans to believe that their team has made the latest coup. This is no different with the Texas Rangers and the rumors that have been swirling for the past few weeks. Texas is scouting Cole Hamels. The Rangers are interested in Zack Greinke. Look out because the Rangers may make a move for Justin Upton. While these talks may get fans salivating they don’t always make sense.  
Does Texas need another starter? Are fans already fed up with Roy Oswalt to the point that they want him gone? If we land a Hamels/Greinke whose spot is lost in the starting rotation? And what do we do with Upton? He has played only right field in his entire career with the Diamondbacks. Do you move him to left and go with an outfield of Upton, Josh Hamilton and Nelson Cruz or do you hope he can play center and put Hamilton in left where has more value as a fielder? Then Texas would have to drop somebody from the roster and that would more than likely be Brandon Snyder as I couldn’t see Texas moving David Murphy or Craig Gentry. 

Also lost in the trade talks are the players that the other teams have interest in. The big three names being tossed around include Mike Olt, Jurickson Profar and Martin Perez. The prevailing thought amongst fans is that all three are untouchable. Sorry guys but Olt is not “untouchable”. However I do not want to see him traded unless it’s for someone that Texas will have control over for at least a couple of more years. Olt’s value is highest at third base and we all know who our third baseman is for the next few years. 


But what could be? What could the Rangers offensive lineup look like in, let’s say, two seasons?

1. Ian Kinsler (LF)

2. Elvis Andrus (SS)


3. Justin Upton (RF)


4. Adrian Beltre (3B)


5. Mitch Moreland (1B)


6. Jurickson Profar (2B)


7. Nelson Cruz (DH)


8. Luis Martinez (C)


9. Leonys Martin (CF)

Okay so it probably won’t happen but it’s still fun to look at the roster and think of the trade possibilities. Plus this is also based on how I believe they will be hitting by then. Young will still be declining and I believe Moreland will see an increase in production. The reality of it all though is that the Rangers have great depth in their farm system and can return to the World Series with the roster they currently have. Simply take Upton out of my above lineup and plug Olt in and you still have a great lineup that was made without a trade that would involve Olt and most certainly other prospects. Also, Nelson Cruz is a free agent after the 2013 season, but I put him in this lineup. If he leaves, the Rangers will get a free agent to fill that spot. Once again I do not possess a crystal ball. Moreland could be gone by then, Olt would be at first and Texas could find another right fielder. It really is fun to play these scenarios out. It’s a wonderful problem having too much talent. 

So for now just sit back, relax and enjoy the season we’re having right now. Slumps will come and go. The pitching staff is fine. Sometimes not making a move can be the best move of all.  

James Holland is a Senior Columnist for ShutDownInning. He can be reached at James.Holland@shutdowninning.com or@SDIJamesHolland on Twitter.
James Holland

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