Editors Note: Follow all the Rangers hot stove action via my twitter account: @TheIrishman9
Since the end of the World Series the Rangers have been linked to just about every free agent and trade opportunity available. If Babe Ruth was still alive the Rangers would be rumored to have millions of American Greenbacks to throw his way.
Yes the Rangers have money to spend for the first time since Tom Hicks became the laughingstock of baseball by giving A-Rod more than he paid for the team in the first place.
With a payroll currently projected to sit at $60 million and a budget reportedly set north of $90 million, there isn’t a free agent in the pool the Rangers can’t afford, but that’s not what this week is about.
Sure, player agents will be in Orlando for the GM meetings this week hoping to get their player grotesquely overpaid in a face to face meeting with any gullible GM they can find.
GM’s however will be looking to see what’s available on the trade market, a market that possibly begins with CY Young winner Zack Greinke of the Kansas City Royals.
I have credible sources who say the Rangers are not just looking to make a splash in free agency by signing both Cliff Lee and Victor Martinez, but also plan on making a serious run at Greinke.
When I first heard this rumor I was quick to say nonsense because the Rangers would have to deal Tanner Scheppers, Martin Perez and either Julio Borbon or Engel Beltre at a minimum; maybe even both outfielders.
That’s an awful lot of talent to send to the Royals for Greinke, but a trade the Rangers might be able to afford.
They’ve already proven the core of the major league squad is good enough to make it to the World Series; a core of talent that should be together for quite some time.
Re-sign Lee and add Greinke to the rotation and all of a sudden CJ Wilson becomes the third starter and Colby Lewis the fourth; talk about depth in the starting rotation.
Before we get too ahead of ourselves here a trade for Greinke still appears to be a long shot unless Daniels is prepared to give up the farm for him, but if the Royals are intent on moving the ace the Rangers might be their best match.
The Rangers play in a relatively relaxed sports market, something that is vital for Greinke considering his past issues.
Greinke reportedly has 15 teams on his no trade list, no word on whether the Rangers are one of them however.
The Rangers have the upper level talent the Royals are looking for which at the moment includes at least two pitchers close to Greinke’s talent level and some bats.
One thing Daniels showed in his trade for Lee back in July is the ability to give the other team a package or prospects that satisfies their need for a blockbuster trade without gutting the Rangers farm system in the process.
This of course all really depends on how serious the Royals are about moving Greinke.
Considering their farm system is loaded but still a few years away from having a major impact at the big league level the Royals can maximize their return for Greinke by dealing him this winter or at the trade deadline in July.
Either way expect the Rangers to be heavily involved whether they sign Lee or not.
I’ve always wondered what Daniels can do with a large budget to work with, especially considering what he did while the team was bankrupt going into the trade deadline.
Apparently we’re about to find out the answer to that question.