I'm tired and a little beat down right now, so this will be relatively brief this morning...
The Texas Rangers are looking to shake things up after firing manager Buck Showalter and are perennially in the market for pitching. They reportedly would consider trading switch-hitting first baseman Mark Teixeira in the right deal.
The Pirates have long been stockpiling young pitching and now is the time to considering trading some of it for an impact hitter like Teixeira, who is only 26 and has 140 homers and 450 RBIs in four seasons with the Rangers.
Plenty of teams covet Gonzalez and his ability to be a dominant closer. While it would be tough to trade a pitcher of his ability, the Pirates found out after Gonzalez was injured that veteran Salomon Torres can handle the ninth inning as he converted 12 of 13 save opportunities.
An offer starting with Gonzalez and Maholm and including a prospect certainly would at least give the Rangers reason to think.
Teixeira isn't cheap. He is scheduled to make $9.4 million next season in the final year of a two-year, $15.4-million contract and is eligible for free agency after the 2008 season. He would join Bay as the co-cornerstone of the franchise and his presence in the middle of the lineup would make the Pirates' lineup intriguing.
I'm calling shenanigans on this -- the article says that the Rangers would reportedly consider moving Teixeira, but I think that report likely came from Buck's bobos, before Buck was shown the door. With Buck gone, I don't think Teixeira is going anywhere...if that possibility were on the horizon, the Rangers wouldn't have given away Adrian Gonzalez last offseason.
And if they were going to deal Teixeira, I'd want more than Paul Maholm, Mike Gonzalez and a prospect.
That said, it is a little depressing, the idea that a team like the Pirates would consider the Rangers someone they could pluck high-priced talent that Texas can't afford from.
Joel Sherman lists Mark DeRosa as a possibility to be the Yankees 2007 third baseman, if Alex Rodriguez gets traded. If the opportunity to be the Yanks everyday third baseman is really out there, I think you can forget about DeRosa being a Ranger next year.
The New York Daily News says the Rangers will be interested in Joe Torre, if Torre is fired. I would be surprised if he ends up here, though...I think the Rangers are looking for someone younger and lower profile, and the 66 year old Torre probably wouldn't mind a year or two off after 11 straight seasons managing the Yanks.
Evan Grant downplays the possibility of Lou Piniella coming to Texas, and says that Jon Daniels is making his list and checking it twice.
Rudy Jaramillo says he doesn't want to be considered a candidate, preferring to remain as hitting coach.