In prosecuting my case, there is plenty of evidence that the Texas Rangers’ ownership and the front office are guilty of a circus-like fan-fleecing con game.
Consider Exhibit A: Mark Buehrle is not in Surprise with the Rangers Spring Training camp. It was strongly rumored, stated as fact actually by T.R. Sullivan on his Postcards from Elysian Fields blog, that the Rangers could have had Buehrle for maybe less than they gave up for McCarthy. Imagine a top 3 of Millwood, Buehrle & Padilla. Why wouldn’t the Rangers prefer a guy who’s proven he can pitch in the Majors, won 19 games, a World Championship, and is a lefty (that does matter in Amerique$t) who can throw 5 different pitches? Because he’d cost more.
IF McCarthy pans out here (and gee look at the long, distinguished list of young talented Rangers’ pitchers who have blossomed into major league studs in Arlington – it just floods me with hope for Brandon), then he’s cheaper. That’s a humonstrous IF to take at the cost of losing 3 strong prospects. And therein lies compelling evidence of the Rangers’ fan-fleecing front office.
Buehrle would have been far more likely to successfully transition to pitching in Arlington. Over McCarthy, Buehrle has 4 years in age and 192 games as a starter over 5 more seasons as a starter. That is a huge plus for a pitcher trying to succeed in Arlington for this Rangers team. At their skill level, the real differentials are all mental – and being on an offensively-minded team in a launching pad park is not the best place for a pitcher to hone their mental game. Buehrle’s already been tested and developed the mental game of a great starter, and that would make him far more likely to successfully tansition to Arlington.
Brandon really isn’t even a starter yet. He was 4-3 in 10 starts and 2 releif appearances for the 2005 World Championship team. Not impressive. Then he was religated to the bullpen on an underperforming team last year, given just 2 starts.
Now, the point here is not to rip McCarthy. He’s a real prospect. But Buerhle transitioned from prospect to pro years ago (at a younger age than McCarthy by the way), and would have been a better choice if the front office’s main goal is to build a championship team as opposed to a competitive team at the cheapest price tht will still draw in fans and $.
Exhibit B to follow after a recess…