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Grading the 2015 Texas Rangers pitchers

Giving out grades for the pitchers on the 2015 Texas Rangers

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Alright, we did grades for the position players earlier this we are handing out grades for the pitchers on the 2015 Texas Rangers.

Colby Lewis -- B

You can make an argument that Colby's grade should be lower, because he had a 4.66 ERA and a 91 ERA+.  You can argue that it should be higher because the ERA was skewed by a couple of disaster starts, and getting 17 wins and 204.2 IP from a guy on a one year, $4 million deal is a bargain.  Regardless, Colby was an anchor for the pitching staff, and him making 33 starts this year despite having a torn meniscus for much of the season was a huge part of the Rangers' success this year.

Yovani Gallardo -- B

Gallardo was acquired before the season for Marcos Diplan, Luis Sardinas, and Corey Knebel, and I think we can safely call the trade a "win" at this point.  Gallardo was great early in the season, and was instrumental in keeping the rotation afloat until reinforcements arrive.  You can point to his 4.00 FIP and say that it is more indicative of how he pitched than his 3.42 ERA, and you can criticize his inability to work past the sixth inning in any start after the month of June, but the Rangers probably don't win the A.L. West without him.  He'll get a qualifying offer today, will most likely decline it, and then the Rangers will get a supplemental first round pick as compensation once he signs with some team for $55 million over four years.

Nick Martinez -- A-

An A- for a guy with a 3.96 ERA who lost his rotation spot in the second half?  Yes.  Like Gallardo, Martinez helped keep the Rangers in contention while waiting for reinforcements.  When a minimum salary second year guy who is pressed into the major league rotation at the start of the year due to injuries gives you a better than league average ERA and the team is 11-10 in his starts, that's a huge success.

Wandy Rodriguez -- A

Yes, Wandy had a 4.90 ERA for the Rangers, and ended up getting released.  But see what I wrote above about Martinez.  Wandy was picked up off the scrap heap when the Rangers were desperate for starting pitchers, and he was great for the Rangers for a couple of months.  Texas was 10-5 in Wandy's starts, and in the five losses, the Rangers scored 0, 2, 2, 2 and 3 runs.  Meanwhile, in the ten starts the Rangers won, Wandy gave up a total of 16 runs -- 3 runs in 3 games, and just 1 run in 7 games.  The Rangers won four one run games that Wandy started, and three two run games, including a 2-1 win against Tampa Bay, a 3-1 win against Boston, and four games when the Rangers scored just 4 runs.  Again, if Wandy doesn't pitch as well as he did for Texas, the Rangers don't win the West.

Cole Hamels -- B

Hamels was the big deadline acquisition for the Rangers.  He was very good, but not great.  He gets a B because of expectations, not because he wasn't as good as, say, Wandy or Nick.

Martin Perez -- B

It was, overall, a successful return from Tommy John surgery for Perez.  He was up and down in his first couple of starts, had an 8 run, 1 inning disaster start in a 21-5 loss to the Yankees, then put up a 3.38 ERA in 66.2 IP over 11 starts the rest of the way.  His playoff start could have been better, but overall, Perez pitched like a guy who you are hoping can make the next step as a 25 year old in 2016, and establish himself as a legit #2 major league starting pitcher.

Shawn Tolleson -- A

Despite Jeff Banister's efforts to run him into the ground, Tolleson was great in 2015.  A guy claimed off of waivers in November, 2013, who was a middle reliever in 2014, Tolleson ended up with the closer role this year when Neftali Feliz couldn't handle it, and ended the year with a 2.99 ERA, as well as finishing 5th in the A.L. in games pitched and 3rd in the A.L. in games finished.  The only concern with Tolleson is whether the heavy workload late in the year will impact him next season.

Anthony Bass -- B-

4.50 ERA in 64 IP in the thankless role of long reliever.  Also, the Rangers won the West with Nick Martinez and Wandy Rodriguez finishing the season 3rd and 4th on the team in innings, and Anthony Bass being 9th in innings.

Keone Kela -- A

Kela, like Tolleson, was ridden hard in 2015, and it showed late in the year, when he was limited due to a tender elbow.  But you got a 2.39 ERA out of him, and the 22 year old fireballing righty looked like a guy who can be a dominant, shutdown reliever, as long as he can stay healthy.

Tanner Scheppers -- F

Another lost season for Scheppers, who had injury issues, and wasn't good when he was healthy.  Hopefully, he gets things turned around in 2016.

Sam Freeman -- A

Sam Freeman absorbed a lot of abuse from Rangers fans late in the year, when he was struggling, but Freeman was another unsung hero for the Rangers pitching staff.  Acquired for cash considerations in spring training, Freeman was waived and outrighted at one point, and appeared in danger of losing his roster spot after a 0.0 IP, 4 batter, 2 run outing in late May.  After that, though, Freeman had a 2.27 ERA over his final 31.2 IP, allowing just 7 inherited runners out of 38 to score, and was asked to pitch 22 times over a 40 day span from late June to early August.  All told, Freeman was fifth among Rangers pitchers in Win Probability Added -- he was used in critical situations, and for the most part, came through.  His work in June and July, when the bullpen was a gaping hole on the team, was huge in keeping the Rangers in position to make their late run.

Chi Chi Gonzalez -- B

Like Martinez, Chi Chi was pressed into duty because of injuries, and like Martinez, he held his own.  His 3.90 ERA belies a 4.97 FIP, and the inability to miss bats was a problem he'll have to improve on, but for what the Rangers needed from him, and got from him, in 2015, it was a successful performance.

Derek Holland -- D

The enigmatic Derek Holland.  Pitched one inning early, then went on the d.l. with a shoulder injury.  Came back pitching like a legit #1 for several games, then fell apart.  Oh, and he had a disastrous 2 IP, 6 run start against the Blue Jays in Game 4 of the ALDS, when the Rangers had a chance to finish out the Jays.  A disappointing year for Derek.

Ross Detwiler -- F

No one understood why the Rangers traded for Detwiler and gave him a rotation spot.  He ended up with a 7.12 ERA and getting released.  That move didn't work.

Sam Dyson -- A+

Trading for Dyson, however, was a coup.  Giving up nothing but a fringe catching prospect in Tomas Telis and a LOOGY prospect in Cody Ege, the Rangers had Dyson stop throwing his four seamer and focus just on his two seamer, and he was dominant, putting up a 1.15 ERA in 31.1 IP.  Dyson also had a 2.45 ERA in the postseason, though unfortunately, all anyone will likely remember from his ALDS was his giving up the mammoth grand slam to Jose Bautista in Game 5, and then his subsequent confrontation with Edwin Encarnacion.

Spencer Patton -- F

Even when there aren't high expectations for you, giving up 24 runs in 24 IP will get you an F.

Jake Diekman -- A

Part of the Cole Hamels trade, Diekman came to Texas and became the primary lefty out of the bullpen, throwing in the upper 90s and teaming with Kela, Dyson and Tolleson to turn the Rangers' bullpen into a weapon.

Neftali Feliz -- F

Neftali Feliz makes me sad.

Ross Ohlendorf -- B-

The Rangers brought him back in September as a middle reliever, and Banister had a lot of faith in him, for whatever reason.  His 3.72 ERA is okay (though his 4.94 FIP is probably more indicative of how he pitched), and I'd give him a higher grade if he hadn't blown Game 161 in such spectacular fashion on national television.

Phil Klein -- F

I honestly can't remember Phil Klein actually pitching for the Rangers this year, but he apparently was in 11 games and had 17.1 IP.  He also had 15 runs allowed, so he gets an F.

Matt Harrison -- A

Matt Harrison also makes me sad.  3 starts and a 6.75 ERA before being traded to Philly.  Just the fact that he made it back, though, gets an A from me.

Alex Claudio -- B

Solid 2.87 ERA.  Awful 6.13 FIP.  He only allowed 12 hits in 15.2 IP, but 4 of those 12 hits were home runs.  Curious if he keeps his 40 man spot all offseason.

Anthony Ranaudo -- C

Two starts, two relief appearances.  One start was an awful 6 runs, 1.2 IP outing, one start was a great 6.2 IP, 0 run outing.  That's why he gets a C, rather than an F, with his 7.63 ERA.  His two relief appearances, he got pounded, but they were blowouts, so who cares.  Texas needs to decide if they are going to keep him in a starting role, or try converting him to relief next year.

Roman Mendez -- D

Started the season on the Opening Day roster, but didn't show enough command to be relied upon, and ended up getting waived.

Stolmy Pimentel -- B

The Rangers won the West this year, despite having Stolmy Pimentel pitch in 8 games for them.  He had a 3.97 ERA in 11.1 IP.  That's okay, I guess.

Andrew Faulkner -- A

Faulkner ended up supplanting Freeman as the #2 lefty in the bullpen late in the season, and handled the job well, putting up a 2.79 ERA in 9.2 IP.  The FIP was good -- 4.69 , due to a pair of home runs -- but he missed bats and looks like someone who can be a useful bullpen part.

Logan Verrett -- D

Remember this guy?  Rule 5 guy claimed on waivers, got dropped a little ways into the season?  He ended up pitching for the Mets down the stretch, including getting 4 starts, and put up a 3.03 ERA.  Crazy.

Luke Jackson -- C

#CanLukeJacksonPitchNow?  Mainly memorable for Banister refusing to use him with an eight run 11th inning lead in Seattle, choosing to use Shawn Tolleson for a second inning instead.  This led to external criticism of Banister (and criticism inside the clubhouse, if you believe the whispers), especially when Jackson ultimately was sent down without ever getting into a game.  Jackson ended up getting into 7 September games, but after giving up 2 runs in a one run game in Anaheim in his first major league appearance, he was used only in blowouts.

Jon Edwards -- C

Like Mendez, couldn't show any command in the majors, and is now with another organization.  At least he got us Will Venable...

Adam Rosales -- A+

Good ol' Adam Rosales.  He actually pitched in two games this season.

Kyuji Fujikawa -- F

Yeah, let's not talk about him.