|The Rangers are all about the pitching
So far, 2009 has been an outrageously good year for the Rangers. So good, that they're entering uncharted territory:
Brandon McCarthy seems intent on making this as tough as possible for the Rangers. Good for him. The Rangers are fast coming up on a major decision concerning their rotation when Vicente Padilla comes back a week from Tuesday (June 2), and McCarthy's neck is on the line . . .
. . . The pitching performance immediately complicates an extremely rare math problem facing the Rangers: How to divide six good starting pitchers into five rotation spots.
Right now the Rangers are fifth in the AL in runs allowed per game. Last year they were dead last. The year before they were twelfth. They were eighth in 2006 and twelfth in 2005. They were dead last or near dead last in pitching in 2003, 2002, 2001 and 2000 too.
The only year in the past decade when they weren't truly awful on the mound was in 2004, when they were fifth in runs allowed per game. That was an 89-win team in a season when 89 wins was only good for third place in the AL West. Eighty-nine wins could very well carry the division this year, so as things stand at the moment, I'm feeling pretty good about being the only person this side of Dallas to have picked the Rangers to take the division.