With the 2021 season having come to a close, we are looking back at the year that was for members of the Texas Rangers.
Today we are looking at pitcher Kyle Gibson.
Did Kyle Gibson even ever really pitch for the Rangers?
I know he supposedly signed with the team after the 2019 season, then was traded at the deadline in 2021. I guess he had to have been with the Rangers — we have Spencer Howard, after all, as well as a couple of other pitchers who used to be with the Philadelphia Phillies, and Gibson is with the Phillies now. So presumably he was here, since now he’s there, and there are players the Rangers got from there that are now here.
But his time with the Rangers doesn’t really stick in my mind. He’s lumped together with Mike Minor and Lance Lynn, guys the Rangers went and signed to three years deals in successive years who ended up working out really well.
But I remember Minor pitching, and pitching well, for the Rangers for two seasons, before not pitching well for a month in 2020 and being traded for a return that was seen as disappointing at the time but that now is seen as really good.
And I really remember Lance Lynn, who was surprisingly, almost defiantly good for Texas. his 2019 season was one of the best pitching seasons in Rangers history, was Cy Young caliber, and his work in 2020 was great as well. Watching Lance Lynn pitch for the Rangers is something I remember well.
But Kyle Gibson? The name is familiar, but there is no real impression left in my brain from his time with Texas. I’m almost embarrassed to admit that the only thing I really remember about him actually pitching for the Rangers was that Opening Day start in Kansas City last year, when he got rocked for 5 runs and couldn’t get out of the first inning.
A harbinger of things to come for the Rangers in 2021, if not Gibson himself.
I’d forgotten how good Gibson was for Texas last year — a 2.87 ERA in 19 starts, despite that awful season opener. He had an incredible 15 start stretch, from his second outing through early July, where he put up a 1.51 ERA. That the Rangers only went 10-5 in that stretch speaks to how bad the team was last year.
But Gibson was here and gone, and years from now he’ll probably be one of those players I can’t remember on a Sporcle quiz, and then am mad at myself for not remembering.