Friday, June 8, 2007

The Revealing Nature of the Ranger Selections

The Rangers were presented with an opportunity yesterday that is nearly unprecedented. By allowing everyone of value to walk this past offseason, they acquired quite the crop of early picks. This crop consisted of five picks in the first 54-and just to punctuate further the amount of picks brought in by other clubs, the Rangers gave up their own first rounder (#16) when they signed Frank Cattalanatto from the Blue Jays.
Jon Daniels and his staff know very well how integral this event is. The opportunity will not present itself again: A plethora of such early picks in a draft laden with talent is a rare thing. So when asked about the team's position on making selections as it pertains to the prospect's signability, Daniels insisted that he who holds the almighty checkbook had authorized substantial increases in the amount of bonuses handed out. The metroplex rejoiced.
Now, let me preface this by stating that I'm very pleased with every Ranger pick of a player I know remotely of. Blake Beavan, Mike Main, and Julio Borbon were all very solid based on their draft position. Beavan and Main are top 10 or 15 talents and Borbon was a definite first rounder and projected in the top 25.
However, there was talent available definitely superior to those three guys. Let me run this possibility by you:
With the 17th pick in the MLB draft, the Texas Rangers select Blake Beavan
With the 24th pick in the MLB draft, the Texas Rangers select Rick Porcello.
With the 35th pick in the MLB draft, the Texas Rangers select Matt Harvey.
Porcello is the concensus top high school pitcher since Josh Beckett. Harvey is comparable if not better than Beavan. I'm a serious Beavan fan, not only for the feel-good factor of selecting a guy who is truly homegrown, but for his tremendous cockiness and competitive spirit. But many have displayed qualms about his mechanics, his command, and the fact that he only really throws two pitches-which however dominant they may statistically appear at the high school level, will need to come up a notch for him to join the ranks of successful two-pitch MLB starters.
The only one that comes to mind is some guy by the name of Randy Johnson.
But, back to the Rangers philosophy. Main and Borbon were both very solid picks at their respective positions. But Porcello is a VERY serious talent. The Tigers cannot believe their luck on this day-they've augmented the best crop of young pitchers out there with another stud. The Rangers balked on the selection because of one obvious mitigating factor: He is a Boras client. The same theme runs true for Mr. Harvey.
Shame on you, Tom Hicks. Shame on you for pinching pennies during a desperate situation. Shame on you for spreading misinformation to the masses. And shame on you and your front office for refusing to discuss your failure to adhere to your personal philosophy.
I hope with all my heart that Beavan, Main, Borbon, and every other Ranger selection of significance rises to the big league level and develops into a superstar. I'm a fan of the franchise, and I am true blue. Your awful management cannot dissuade me from liking my team. But I will not allow you to make a single penny because of me. I won't buy your tickets ticket, I won't pay for your TV packages, I won't even buy an effing baseball card. Not until you decide that the time for change is ripe.
And I dissuade every reader to adhere to the same philosophy. Fight thrift with thrift.

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