Should the Rangers go with Yovani Gallardo?
Back in August, I wrote that the Texas Rangers were smart to hold on to Yovani Gallardo while adding Cole Hamels to their rotation. It worked, as it took the Rangers from virtual obscurity to 2015 American League West champions and into the postseason.
Of course, a myriad of other factors helped the Rangers make their incredible second-half run. Yet you can’t look past the combination of Hamels and Gallardo as a major reason for the team’s comeback. Hamels struggled at first with the transition from Philadelphia to Arlington, but Gallardo backed him up with his second-best month of the 2015 season. Together, they blew the Houston Astros and Los Angeles Angels out of the way to win the West.
The team have Hamels and lefty Derek Holland as their one-two to start the season. Despite missing 2014 and most of 2015 with injuries, Holland still has the talent to be one of the game’s premiere pitchers, and he plans to reestablish himself as just that. The Rangers other ace, right-hander Yu Darvish, won’t be returning until at least May from his recovery from Tommy John surgery. When he does, he will slide into the number two spot.
Do the Rangers want to keep the team together? They should. There are comparable second-tier, number-three starters available on the free agent market, but re-signing Gallardo would make a nice righty-lefty combination in the rotation.
To find out more about why the Rangers still need Gallardo (and there are plenty!) you can read the rest of my column on Today’s Knuckleball by following the link below: