Texas Rangers rumors: Billy Hamilton and Dan Straily of the Cincinnati Reds could potentially fill the Rangers’ two primary needs, and the Texas Rangers have asked about the pair, according to Ken Rosenthal.
Hamilton has been linked to the Rangers for some time, as Texas continues to try to find a strong defensive center fielder who is cost-controlled for a few years. Hamilton has three years of team control left, and although he’s a career .248/.297/.334 hitter, he’s a premium defender who is also a terrific basestealer.
Straily is a new addition to the Rangers’ rumor mill. The 28 year old was shipped by the A’s to the Cubs as part of the deal that sent Jason Hammel and Jeff Samardzija to Oakland in 2014. The Cubs shipped him to Houston as part of the Dexter Fowler trade prior to 2015, and Straily wasn’t good in Houston, and ended up being waived at the start of the 2016 season.
The Reds claimed Straily, and he put up a 3.76 ERA in 191.1 IP, good for a 4.3 bWAR -- this, after putting up just 0.5 bWAR in his prior major league career in almost 300 IP. While one could hope that was indicative of a breakout year, Straily had a 4.88 FIP and a 5.02 xFIP -- basically, his 2016 campaign was, from a defense-independent stat standpoint, virtually identical to what he’d done previously in his career.
Nevertheless, Straily would provide some depth for the rotation and would be relatively cheap, so I can understand the Rangers inquiring on him. I wouldn’t imagine Texas would give up a lot to get him, however.