Moves that matter

irod Many small moves have been made before the trade deadline and more sense players have started to clear waivers. Some teams got what they needed, the Phillies made a great deal acquiring Cliff Lee for what works out to be a handful of magic beans. On the opposite end of the spectrum the Red Sox should have made a push for a pitcher but instead got an offensive weapon and now sit 7 games out of the division lead in the AL East. One has to wonder how secure Theo Epstein’s job is now. Then there were a bunch of small moves that on the surface seemed insignificant but may or may not end up being moves that matter.

One move that I love was made today by the Texas Rangers. After losing Jarrod Saltalamacchia to the disabled list Tyler Teagarden became the primary backstop for the wild card leading Rangers. The Rangers made no secret in the fact that they were looking for a catcher.

Hence the Homecoming of Ivan Rodriguez (aka Pudge) Pudge played with the Rangers from 1991 to 2002 earning 10 gold gloves and an MVP in 1999.  Now I know what you are thinking, Pudge has not been great in years and he was pretty much a flop last season with the Yankees. This season he batted .251 for the Astros with 8 HR and 34 RBI and an ops of .280. Yes those are pretty pedestrian stats but they are not horrible. The Rangers will be on the hook for the pro-rated amount of the 1.5 million dollar deal he signed with the Astros and will have to pony up two PTBNL’s. The plan announced is that he will be backing up Teagarden, which is ridiculous. Teagarden is batting .198 and has struck out 44 times in 124 AB’s.

Ivan Rodriguez’s best years are behind him there is no arguing that, but he will certainly be an upgrade in every category over Teagarden. Sometimes a change of scenery can bring production that was not there before. Pudge played well for Texas in the past and seeing him in other uniforms these last few years has not been natural. This will be a move that matters in the playoff race mark my words.

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4 Comments on “Moves that matter”

  1. Mike Says:

    You are right that Teagarden will be a better hitter than Pudge is and yes the sample is small. But the stretch run for the playoffs is not the time to wait and see if his hitting comes around. Hes not horrible as a backstop but Pudge is better. He knows the AL hitters and should be the starting catcher for the stretch run for the wildcard. The Rangers are not struggling to put up runs so the added defense and leadership will be the thing that matters. I believe it will be what gets them in the playoffs. The Rookie will learn from Pudge and Prepare for next year when he will have a much bigger roll.

  2. wiffleball Says:

    the last time ivan rodriguez was good was in 2004. and you said “an upgrade in every category”. pudge is a great defensive catcher, but knowing al hitters doesn’t help him at the dish. teagarden is a very very good defensive catcher as well. pudge will certainly help teagarden’s development, but he should not be the starter. teagarden is a much better hitter, despite what the stats say right now.

  3. wiffleball Says:

    A) There is no way Theo’s job is going to be in any sort jeopardy.
    B) Tiny sample size for Teagarden. He’s only played in 38 games. Remember Mark Teixeira after 38 games? Not so good. Even with the .198 average, he is still getting on just about as much as Ivan. Ivan is in no way an upgrade, Teagarden is just having a rough go of it.

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