Following an unsuccessful pursuit of free-agent pitcher Gerrit Cole, the Texas Rangers were desperate to make a big move. On December 15th, a big move was made with the Rangers acquiring Corey Kluber from the Cleveland Indians.
Kluber is a two-time Cy Young award winner(2014 and 2017). He pitched three games in the 2016 World Series, earning two wins. Also, he led the American League in wins in 2014 and 2017 and was the shutout leader in 2016 and 2017. Furthermore, he won 20 games in 2018. In other words, he’s a perfect fit for the team. His experience and list of accomplishments really tell the story.
Is The Trade Essential?
The trade appears to be an absolute steal. Kluber is coming off a rough 2019 appearing in seven games finishing 2-3. A broken arm derailed his season. Rangers General Manager Jon Daniels calls the injury a ‘blessing in disguise’ considering the injury wasn’t extremely severe.
In Kluber’s case, Daniels may be correct as the injury gave Kluber time off for recuperation considering Kluber pitched through six full seasons from 2013 to 2018 including a full postseason in 2016 and two playoff appearances in 2017 and one in 2018. At this point, a fresh start is the best thing for Kluber.
The trade is absolutely essential. Joining the likes of Lance Lynn and Mike Minor ought to give Texas a chance to set up a dominant pitching rotation. The Rangers can only hope Kluber can stay healthy and help bring momentum. The team is looking to build a rotation strong enough to make the playoffs. The only concern for Texas is Kluber’s health, although there have been no reports lately of any ill effects. In other words, Kluber seems to be all right.
The Rangers are preparing to play their first season in their new stadium. Spring Training begins in February. Also, the team’s first Spring Training game is February 21st. Furthermore, the Rangers start their 2020 season on the road against the Seattle Mariners. They’ll play their first home series against the Los Angeles Angels at their new Globe Life Field.
It’s unclear if Kluber is going to be Texas’ Opening Day starter, although he’s likely the favorite. At the moment, it all depends on the results at Spring Training.