I like Mark Teixeira – a lot. He’s one of my son’s favorite players – and mine. But I’m starting to wonder if he and/or the Rangers front office are purposefully taking their time to get him back into the lineup now – not July 13th after the All-Star break.
According to T.R. Sullivan’s report on Tuesday, Tex will be starting a rehab assignment soon. Is it me, or are they lollygagging his return? I thought only Juan Gonzalez (in his whiney-baby years) took this long to come back from a simple leg muscle strain.
As teams will want to see that Tex is recovered fully before they trade for him, the Rangers are cutting things close. A July 13 return gives Teixeira only 18 game opportunities to prove what he’s got after this injury – which was reportedly minor and he was supposed to be back by now. Also, I fear the slow return may signal to other teams that Tex did more damage to his left quad than was advertised. As teams like the Dodgers, Tigers and others look prime to consider a deal for Teixeira, all this can’t be helping his trade value. And the longer wait could mean some teams start looking in other directions they may never have checked if Tex was back and healthy and producing. So Tex – if you want to help the team and your career, get back fast.
In the meantime, this statement from Ron Washington also troubled me:
“We want to make sure when (Teixeira) does come back we can have him for the rest of the year, not just one day,” manager Ron Washington said.
I HOPE that is a cover statement to alleve some of the concerns I mentioned above while also positioning that we want to keep Tex unless someone makes a great offer. But the Rangers have rarely shown that kind of savvy under Tom Hicks or Little Jon DanielsHart.
I’m starting to fear that Ron’s comment is reflective of the organization’s true feelings. Which would be purely STUPID. Why would they keep Tex this year? So maybe they finish 28 instead of 35 games out of first place? And then they have him for one last uncompetitive season in ’08 before he WALKS AS A FREE AGENT. That would be assinine when the Rangers could trade him now and likely get a major-league ready starter plus a firstbaseman and/or maybe a prospect or three.
Unless Hicks is willing to about double the team’s salary next season through 3-4 significant free agent signings (yeah – I’m not holding my breath on that one – not even when Hicks will be more interested in winning next season because it would draw more traffic through Where’s The Glory Park and help him lease and sell holdings in his income property before the more attractive Cowboys development is ready), trading Tex is the best opportunity the Rangers have to restructure the team to not just be competitive but to possibly, finally become Championship contenders in the final years of the decade.
Waiting shows wavering. Wavering scares me. The only possible upside is if wavering persuades other GMs that they’ll need to aim high to “pry” Teixeira away from the Rangers.