The Texas Rangers Continue to Surprise Teams in 2019

With just a few weeks to go before the MLB All-Star Break, the Texas Rangers sit in the second wild-card spot in the American League with a 38-32 record. Texas is 9.5 games back of the Houston Astros for first place in the AL West Standings and they will most likely not catch them, but a playoff spot is more than likely for the Rangers with the way things are going right now.

A few teams that are trying to catch them for the second wild-card spot is the Boston Red Sox (38-34), the Cleveland Indians (36-33), and the Oakland Athletics (36-35). All three teams behind the Texas Rangers all made it to the playoffs last season.

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The only teams that are currently in the playoffs right now in the American League that made it last season was the New York Yankees and the Houston Astros. The Tampa Bay Rays and the Minnesota Twins would be both in the playoffs if the season ended right now. They both were not in the playoffs last season. Tampa Bay last made it to the postseason in 2013 and Minnesota last made it to the postseason was just two years ago as the second wild team in the American League.

The last time the Texas Rangers made it to the postseason was in 2016. They were the number one seed in the American League and Texas was swept against the Toronto Blue Jays. The Rangers were also eliminated from the postseason in 2015 against Toronto in the ALDS after Texas blew an 0-2 series lead.

This season, first-year manager Chris Woodward is trying to keep his team optimistic and they have surprised people across the MLB so far this season. He played in the MLB from 1999-2012. Woodward played for the Toronto Blue Jays, the New York Mets, the Atlanta Braves, the Seattle Mariners, and the Boston Red Sox.

Elvis Andrus‘s batting average so far this season is .303 with six home runs and 39 RBI’s, along with 14 stolen bases. His on-base percentage is .341.

Hunter Pence is having a bounce-back season as the team’s designated hitter. His batting average is .292 with 14 home runs and 46 RBI’s, along with three stolen bases. Pence’s on-base percentage so far this season is .352.

Shin-Sho Chu’s batting average so far this season is .280 with 11 home runs and 29 RBI’s, along with four stolen bases. His on-base percentage is .383.

Joey Gallo has been the Texas Rangers best player in the 2019 season, but he has been sidelined with an oblique injury for the past couple of weeks. His batting average so far this season is .276 with 17 home runs and 41 RBI’s, along with three stolen bases. Gallo’s on-base percentage is .421.

Asdrubal Cabrera is having another effective season and after he was signed in free agency during the offseason. His batting average so far this season is .251 with 10 home runs and 41 RBI’s, along with three stolen bases. Cabrera’s on-base percentage is .336.

Rougned Odor is having a rough year for the Texas Rangers. His batting average is only .184 but he has eight home runs and 34 RBI’s, along with seven stolen bases. Odor’s on-base percentage is .265.

Texas has gotten very good starting pitching so far this season. Mike Minor has a 6-4 record with a 2.63 ERA. In 95.2 innings pitched, he has given up 81 hits and 28 runs. He has walked 32 batters and struck out 99.

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Ariel Jurado is only 23-years-old and he has a ton of upside as a starter in the major leagues and Jurado has shown some of it so far this season. His record is 4-2 with a 3.02 ERA. In 41.2 innings pitched, he has given up 41 hits and 21 runs. Ariel Jurado has walked 12 batters and has struck out 34.

Shawn Kelley is the Texas Rangers closer. His record so far this season is 3-1 with a 2.55 ERA. In 24.2 innings pitched, he has given up 21 hits and seven runs. Kelley has walked five batters and has struck out 20. He has recorded eight saves in 12 attempts.

Chris Martin has also been reliable in the bullpen. His record is 0-2 with a 3.67 ERA. In 27 innings pitched, Martin has given up 26 hits and 11 runs. He has also walked three batters and struck out 28.

Jose Leclerc is also another key reliever in the bullpen. His record so far this season is 1-2 with a 4.94 ERA. In 31 innings pitched, he has given up 24 hits and 17 runs. Leclerc has walked 15 batters and has struck out 49.

They will need to find some bullpen help at the trade deadline.

The Texas Rangers will need to continue to play at a high-level night in and night out. I think they will also need to make another trade for a bat at the deadline as well. After this road series against the Cincinnati Reds, Texas will have a huge three-game set at home starting on Monday night against the Cleveland Indians.

How do you fell about the Texas Rangers early on in 2019? Leave a comment below.

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Follow Glenn on Twitter @glennkaplan13.

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