Texas Rangers 2009 Season Preview

Bare KnucksAnalyst IApril 7, 2009

SURPRISE, AZ - MARCH 05:  Taylor Teagarden #2 of the Texas Rangers reacts after striking out during the spring training game against the San Diego Padres at Surprise Stadium on March 5, 2009 in Surprise, Arizona. The Rangers defeated the Padres 4-3.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Texas Rangers 2008 Review:

What did the Texas Rangers lineup and pitching staff have in common in 2008? Both were able to figure out how to light up the scoreboard. The Rangers displayed one of the most efficient lineups in all of baseball, centered on the breakout performances of Josh Hamilton, Ian Kinsler, and Milton Bradley.

Behind their breakout years and contributions from others in the lineup, the Rangers were able to lead the league in hits and runs scored. Unfortunately all of the production at the plate could not hide the teams’ big flaws. The first being a defensive catastrophe that lead the league in errors, and the second the worst pitching staff in the MLB.

As any baseball fan knows two of the most important elements of any good baseball team are good defense, and an effective pitching staff. Lacking both the Rangers were not able to maintain consistency out on the field, and even with their great offensive production they were not able to compete in the struggling AL West. The Rangers finished 79-83, second in the division.

Texas Rangers 2009 Preview:

The Rangers definitely had something to build on for the 2009 MLB season; they had established an offensive juggernaut that would be able to keep them in any game. However, lacking a productive offseason, the Rangers have not given themselves much to look forward to.

On the offensive side they lost a cornerstone with the departure of Milton Bradley to the Cubs. This will be a tough loss to replace considering Bradley led the AL in on base percentage. The area they needed to address most went untouched, their terrible pitching staff will look eerily similar to the 2008 staff that was the worst in the majors.

Its hard to imagine this team being able to achieve any amount of success with Kevin Milwood being the teams ace. Their bullpen is surrounded by question marks, and the rotation lacks both consistency and stability. It’s also hard to imagine the Kinsler and Hamilton are going to be able to duplicate their success from 2008.

With these things taken into consideration its pretty clear the Rangers have cemented themselves as cellar dwellers for the 2009 season. Hopefully they find something to look forward to for 2010, because there is not much to be excited about in the coming months.

Texas Rangers 2009 Surprise Player:

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