The Rangers’ main concern in this off-season is to improve their pitching staff significantly. In 2007, the starting pitchers put together a terrible season as they finished last in the American League in wins (42), innings (838), and ERA (5.50).
The top three starters from last year- Kevin Millwood, Vincente Padilla, and Jason Jennings are each coming off the worst years of their career. Besides for Jennings (who I still am not convinced can get back to his form in 2002 when he had his only winning season, winning rookie of the year with a 16-12 record), it is yet to be determined if Millwood and Padilla can get back to their winning ways. The back end of the rotation is still questionable. With righty Brandon McCarthy and left-hander Kason Gabbard, both in their mid 20′s and showing much potential to be good pitchers, they still somehow haven’t been able to put together a full season.
A main reason for the poor pitching last season was the injuries that plagued the pitchers. If they want to have a successful season they must stay healthy and consequently will have a “possibility” to get some wins, and for the first time since the 2004 season have a winning record. Maybe even get a playoff spot… though this may be wishful thinking.
So far the rotation seems set with Millwood, Padilla, Jennings, McCarthy, and Gabbard, but with the Rangers anything can happen once the season commences.
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