DALLAS – Two years ago Texas general manager Jon Daniels made an early departure from the annual media Christmas luncheon because the team had to make a posting on Yu Darvish.
Last year’s media lunch came to an abrupt end when news broke that Josh Hamilton was heading to the Los Angeles Angels.
Wednesday’s lunch had no such fanfare and if you believe everything Daniels says, that could be the case for the remainder of the offseason.
“If there was a deal out there we liked, we’d act on it,” Daniels said. “We don’t have any pending offers or anything like that. We like our team. We’re open to adding to it obviously. We’ve talked about some everyday players. We’ve talked about some more complementary players. We’ve talked about adding some depth to the pitching staff but we’re not close on anything. We don’t have any pending offers or anything like that.”
While all is quiet at the ballpark, that doesn’t mean the Rangers aren’t still being linked to free agents. The big three attached to Texas are outfielders Shin-Soo Choo and Nelson Cruz as well as Japanese right-hander Masahiro Tanaka.
Now that the posting system for Tanaka has been set at $20 million should the Rakuten Golden Eagles opt to post him, many teams figure to have interest in the 25-year old.
Daniels has no problem with the new posting system in place.
“It seems equitable,” he said. “It closely mirrors traditional free agency while respecting the Japanese club’s efforts and investment in developing a player and getting them a return. It gives the player more choice, more of the money going to the player theoretically.”
Daniels said he remains in contact with Cruz’s agent Adam Katz but signing a big-name star appears to be a longshot.
“There are number of players that we like but my expectation is at the top of the market it’s unlikely for us to bring that kind of deal in for a variety of reasons,” Daniels said. “Competition. Dollars. Fit and our own desire. We’ve certainly stayed in touch.”
Daniels feels the club has addressed the offense, which was the No. 1 offensive priority, with the trades for Prince Fielder and Michael Choice.
“We’d still like to get better and we’d still like to address some things but we don’t feel an urgency to go out and make a deal for the sake of doing that,” Daniels said.