Maybe now, the pace of offseason play for the Texas Rangers will pick up.
The Michael Young trade to Philadelphia was made official by Major League Baseball on Sunday, ending the tenure of the franchise’s all-time hits leader with the club. The trade news broke on Saturday, the same day that coveted right-hander Zack Greinke agreed to a six-year deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Now the Rangers have to decide what’s next for their ever-changing roster.
“We’d like to move some things forward,” Texas general manager Jon Daniels said. “That’s our goal.”
The moving forward won’t include Young, who was dealt to the Phillies along with approximately $10 million for right-hander Josh Lindblom and minor league righty Lisalverto Bonilla.
Daniels said the Rangers told Young earlier in the offseason that he likely wouldn’t be getting every day at-bats with the Rangers in 2013 and Young was prepared for that. But last Tuesday in Nashville, Daniels told Young’s agent Dan Lozano that the Phillies were interested in trading for Young. The chance to play every day at third base was enough for Young to put aside his family ties to the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex and waive his no-trade clause.
Still, it wasn’t easy for the Rangers to pull the trigger on the deal for the unquestioned team leader in the Texas clubhouse.
“We tried to do whatever we could to make it a good situation for Michael,” Texas manager Ron Washington said. “He’s such a professional. If there was crying in baseball, I guess I would cry. I’m certainly sad. He means so much to us, especially in the past three or four years.”
Daniels said it’s too early to determine where Young’s at-bats will go because the roster is far from complete. He also said that the Young trade doesn’t have any impact on the whether or not the club will push forward with an idea of moving Ian Kinsler to first base and putting rookie Jurickson Profar at second base.
“It’s something we’ve talked about, but we haven’t made that call yet,” Daniels said. “It’s going to depend on other moves we make. It’s a possibility, but we haven’t made that call yet.”
The Rangers are also now out of the equation on Greinke, which was a blow to a team that pursued him heavily. Now that Greinke is no longer an option, there’s a chance the Rangers will be content with the starting rotation they currently have. That doesn’t mean the Rangers won’t look for some starting depth.
Re-signing Josh Hamilton also remains a possibility for Texas. Daniels said nothing has changed with the Hamilton situation since Daniels left the winter meetings last week. The club remains in contact with Hamilton’s representative Michael Moye, and it hasn’t made a final offer to him yet.