5 Players Who Won’t Make Texas Rangers’ 2014 Opening Day Roster
Players Who Won't Make Texas Rangers' 2014 Opening Day Roster
The Texas Rangers are currently in Surprise, Arizona preparing for the 2014 season. They have added many new faces to the club for the upcoming season. Texas believes that the addition of guys like Prince Fielder and Shin Soo Choo will be the recipe for their return to the postseason in 2014. However, before Texas can think about playing deep into October, it must make some key decisions in March.
When you change as much as the Rangers did this offseason, you must use Spring Training to do a lot of things. The players must get to know one another, the manager must decide which pieces fit where in the lineup and the team must decide which players will be on the big league team and which ones need to start in the Minors.
I do not see the players getting to know each other as being an issue. During the entire Ron Washington era, Texas has had great clubhouse chemistry. Washington has a great connection with his players. He would do anything for his guys and his guys feel the same way about him. With Washington’s clubhouse leadership, Elvis Andrus’ infectious upbeat personality, and Adrian Beltre’s on the field leadership, the transition for guys like Fielder and Choo should be an easy one.
One question that apparently has already been answered is which players will be in the starting lineup. Ron Washington announced on the opening day of Spring Training that he already has his opening day lineup set. While the lineup may be set, there are still some questions left to be answered.
The Rangers have a lot of talent in their backup players, but they can only have 25 players on the roster when the regular season begins. Ron Washington and Jon Daniels have the job of making sure they get the right 25. With that said, here is my list of five players that are talented and might help the Rangers in the future, but will not be on the roster to start the 2014 season.
Robinson Chirionos is a catcher that played with the Rangers during parts of last season, but with the re-signing of Geovany Soto and the addition of J.P. Arencibia, there will not be room on the roster for Chirinos.
Rougned Odor is an infielder with a very bright future. The problem for him is that the Rangers have one of the best infields in baseball. They could keep him as the backup infielder, but he is a young player that needs to be playing everyday. The only place he can do that is in the Minors.
Michael Kirkman is a talented pitcher but has never consistently put it all together. The Rangers’ bullpen should be one of their strengths this season and with so many talented guys, I do not see Kirkman making the cut.
Nick Tepesch was the fifth starter for the Rangers for parts of 2013 and he will be battling for another chance this spring. While I believe he has potential, I do not believe he will be one of the five starters when the Rangers open the season.
Michael Choice and Engle Beltre will be in one of the most intriguing position battles for the Rangers. One will be the fourth outfielder and the other will likely start the year in the Minors. I predict that Beltre’s experience from last season will help him win the job.