Oct 2, 2015; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Toronto Blue Jays pitcher David Price (14) smiles in the dugout during the fifth inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Both teams went shopping for an ace and both teams got one. The Rangers were able to land Cole Hamels prior to the July 31st Trade Deadline. Hamels has gone 7-1 in 12 games pitched for the Rangers with a 3.66 ERA along the way. While that’s all well and good, pitching remained an issue for the Rangers in the second half. The Rangers team ERA for the 2015 season was 4.24, which ranks them 23rd in the Major Leagues.
By contrast the Blue Jays who’s pitching improved on all fronts ended the season with a team ERA of 3.80 which was good enough for 12th in the Majors. So while Cole Hamels has been a fine contributor for the Rangers. He didn’t ignite a wave of efficiency and change the way David Price has.
The Rangers will also be taking at least two lefties against the Jays, something that’s music to the ears of Jay’s fans. Colby Lewis, the original choice for the Ranger’s fourth starter has faltered down the stretch, not making it out of the 5th in his last two starts of the season. Both ended in losses for the Rangers. This could force the Rangers to choose Martin Perez, another leftie, as their fourth starter instead. Neither is an appealing choice.
Especially given that Derek Holland struggled down the stretch pitching with a 2-3 record in September with a monthly ERA of 6.60. This makes Yovani Gallardo, whose been magnificent against the Blue Jays all season, the only favored pitching matchup the Rangers have against the Blue Jays. If I was a betting man, I’d bet on Price, Dickey, Estrada, and Stroman to go the distance over Gallardo, Hamels, Holland and Lewis any day of the week. Of course, not all the damage is the Pitching staff’s fault…
Next: Too Many Errors?