Since the Rangers collapsed last season the talk in Texas has been about changes being made and a youth infusion with guys like Jurickson Profar and Leonys Martin.

That movement is now in full effect as the Rangers have traded all-time hits leader Michael Young to the Phillies for relief pitcher Josh Lindblom and minor league pitcher Lisalvetro Bonilla; Texas will eat around $10 million of Young's contract.

This move makes a lot of sense for the Rangers who want to bring some youth into the roster and no question will make this a better baseball team, but it still hurts.

It hurts a lot.

It's no secret Young has started to decline, a process that accelerated rather quickly last season, and does not have a great relationship with GM Jon Daniels, but the fact remains Texas just doesn't have a roster spot for Young anymore; at least not a full-time role anyway.

I don't think this is about what happened last season, as painful as it was to watch Young struggle that badly, because let's be honest, players have bad seasons and bounce back all the time.

No, this is about a youth infusion as Jurickson Profar is ready for full-time duty shifting Ian Kinsler to first base, unless Elvis Andrus is dealt for Justin Upton, eliminating that role for Young.

Rangers fans are quick to jump on Young because of his sharp decline last season but don't forget his total body of work including collecting 200 hits, season after season, on bad Rangers teams. 

He leaves the Rangers at the top of almost all offensive categories which is interesting since former GM John Hart nearly dealt Young because he didn't think he could hit.

This is why Young will be in the Rangers Hall of Fame and perhaps even have his number retired in a few years and John Hart has to pay for a ticket just to be allowed in Rangers Ballpark.

Thank goodness he was unsuccessful with trading Young.

I'm going to miss Michael.

I'm going to miss the double down the line in a 0-2 count.

I'm going to miss his antics with Elvis Andrus and Ian Kinsler before and during games.

I'm going to miss him standing in front of his locker fielding the tough questions after a bad night.

Michael Young was the leader of this team and I know fans lately like to make fun of that fact but his leadership abilities are a rare find and that will be a huge hole for the Rangers to fill with his departure.

Maybe Ian Kinsler steps into that role or even Adrian Beltre, but make no mistake, the Rangers will miss Michael Young more than casual fans seem to realize.

Mr. Ranger. 

Face of the franchise.


Whatever nickname you used for Michael Young is irrelevant now because the guy that has been a fixture of Rangers baseball for over a decade is now playing third base for the Phillies and I only have one thing to say to those casual fans that focus on last season and his sharp painful decline at the plate instead of the complete package.

You don't know what you have until it's gone.