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  • Writer's picturePaul Semendinger

A QUICK LOOK - The Texas Rangers are not the Yankees

by Paul AND Ethan Semendinger

November 2, 2023

***

We wanted to get this posted quickly, so this piece won't have the super in-depth type of writing you expect from us both, but, as we talked this morning, Ethan and I noticed a few things about the Rangers that they do much differently than the Yankees.


We wanted to get this posted because the topic is extremely relevant today.


These ideas come in no particular order.


Please feel free to add other ideas in the comments. As best as we can during the day, we'll add our thoughts to the discussion.


* The Rangers have a well-respected manager - Bruce Bochy has won numerous World Series now. He is well-respected in the game. He is a leader. He commands respect.


* Analytics don't run the team - Bruce Bochy is also not a manager who looks at analytics and bases his decisions on what the numbers say, but instead by who his players are. Of course he uses numbers, only a fool wouldn't, but the team isn't run by the numbers as the Yankees seem to be. (Bochy wins a lot, his way seems to work.)


* The team has balance in the lineup and on the pitching staff - The Rangers have left-handed hitters and right-handed hitters. They have left-handed pitchers and right-handed pitchers. The team is balanced.


* The Rangers have a strong core of players developed through their system - The Rangers have numerous key players that they developed through their system. But, part of the core of the team aren't just homegrown players, they are good quality homegrown players.


* When the window opened, the Rangers jumped all-in - Rather than cutting corners, the Rangers went for it, big, once they saw a chance to win. The General Manager and the owner made the moves it took to win. They looked at the big picture.


* The Rangers spent BIG - Sort of like the above, but I am sure, as they bask in the glory of a World Championship, the Rangers do not regret, at all, spending on Corey Seager, Marcus Semien, and even Jacob DeGrom and Max Scherzer. The chance to win was there (and like the above) the Rangers did what they could to win. They didn't hope, they made things happen by getting key players. They sent a message to the players - we are in it - we're not taking half-measures.


* The Rangers also acquired other key players - This included some former Yankees such as Jordan Montgomery and Aroldis Chapman (and Nathan Eovaldi). They also made smart trades to help get them to this point. (I wonder if they'd rather have Joey Gallo or Ezequiel Duran.) In regard to Chapman, they acquired him on June 30, well before the trade deadline. They didn't wait, they moved. The Rangers created the market. They did not wait for the market to come to them. The Rangers were proactive, not reactive.


* The Rangers believed in their players - We have written , a lot, about how ridiculous it was to trade Jordan Montgomery last year, in a pennant race, and for the team to insult him and say that he had no role in the post season once they sent him away. The excuse never made sense, but more, it is the type of comment that reveals a lot about how the leaders of the Yankees think and operate. Well, Jordan Montgomery gets the last laugh in the end, but, more than that... when the team's leaders insult (directly or indirectly) the players, it creates an atmosphere in the organization that can be corrosive. When players feel like the team doesn't believe in them, it does not create an environment conducive to winning. Any leader in any business knows this. The Yankees need to do a much better job in this area. Montgomery is just one of many examples.


Much of what the Rangers did are things we have advocated for the Yankees to do, for years and years on these pages.


The Yankees talked about the need for experts to figure it all out to get them back on track. (Aren't the people who run the team supposed to be the experts? Isn't that what they're getting paid to be? If they aren't, why are they making decisions - why have they been making decisions?)


But, rather than finding experts, all the Yankees need to do is look at the smart things that smart teams do to win. This isn't difficult.


For a team with the resources and (former) reputation as the Yankees, following a plan such as the above should be simple.

8 Comments


Cary Greene
Cary Greene
Nov 02, 2023

Cashman spent $27.3 million more than Young spent this year, so the Rangers didn't really spend BIG, but yeah, they spent to the tune of becoming MLB's 4th highest ranked payroll. Based on spending, the Yankees didn't take half-measures, they walloped what the Rangers were willing to spend. Money alone doesn't equate to championships.


That said, all of your other points make sense Paul, starting with the the three B's: Balance, Bochy and Believing (in their players).


I'm not always right, few if any of us are. But I advocated that the Yankees should have been all in on Seager and they bowed completely out. Dumb move on Steinbrenner's part. The Rangers also brought in the games two top aces,…


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Robert Malchman
Robert Malchman
Nov 02, 2023

So you would be fine if the Yankees were a 90-win team that stumbled on the last day of the season to blow the Division title, slither their way into the post-season as a fifth-seed Wild Card, and then got lucky and hot? So you finally agree that all that matters is somehow bumbling into the post-season, so long as you get hot over a potential 22-game stretch by going, at a minimum, 13-9? Good to know.

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cpogo0502
Nov 02, 2023

Paul:


The Rangers' success illustrates the folly of hiring Aaron Boone who had no previous coaching or managerial experience. My hat is off to Bruce Bochy who is a true professional and does not rely on analytics. Like you said, it's more about feel, understanding your players' abilities, putting them in situations where they can succeed, and building a balanced ball club; everything the Yankees are not doing.

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jjw49
Nov 02, 2023

Yankees do a lot of talking to appease the fans but it's what they don't do in practice that is the issue. Ownership needs to replace Cashman to start the process of getting back to relevance and establishing the Yankee franchise to prominence.

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fuster
Nov 02, 2023

what do you think of the Rangers' starters? relievers?


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Cary Greene
Cary Greene
Nov 02, 2023
Replying to

As a group, they averaged a 105 regular season ERA+, that's a far cry from the 113.48 ERA+ that past champions have averaged in the regular season since 1903 fuster. That said, the Rangers pitching staff was well above League Average in the regular season and guess what? Only Seven teams in MLB history have ever won it all with below average regular season pitching.


So my answer would be that I think very highly of the Rangers overall pitching and I also commend the moves they made to build a core group of bridge and late game relievers who, if they heated up in the postseason, might even produce dramatically better results than what the Rangers staff managed in…


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