The Texas Rangers have been one of the biggest surprises of the 2023 season, compiling a 34-19 record. That record ties the Rangers with the Baltimore Orioles for the second-best record in the MLB.
The Rangers also tied their franchise record for the best 50-game start to a season which was set in 2013. What has propelled the American League West Divisin leaders to such a great start?
Here are seven reasons the Rangers are one of the MLB’s best team:
The Rangers have been one of the major’s best offensive teams at getting hits when it matters the most. With runners in scoring position, the Rangers lead the MLB in average (.333), RBIs (243) and hits (162).
The Rangers also excel at hitting with their backs against the wall. While batting with runners in scoring position when the team has two outs, the Rangers still lead the league in average (.316), RBIs (106) and hits (71) and it’s those clutch hits that have made the Rangers’ offense so dangerous.
Rookie of the Year?
Josh Jung was one of the Rangers’ most highly touted prospects and this season he’s shown why.
Jung is making an excellent case that the Rookie of the Year trophy should return to Arlington for the first time since Neftalí Feliz took home the award in 2010. Jung ranks among the top rookies in the majors in several categories including hits (2nd), home runs (1st), RBIs (1st) and batting average (4th).
The Rangers have received plenty of help from young players like the aforementioned Josh Jung but the importance of the Rangers veterans can’t be understated.
Jung credits Marcus Semien with helping him flourish on the diamond. Semien and Will Smith were both cited by young players as invaluable leaders in the clubhouse.
Response to adversity
Multiple key players on the Rangers were lost to injury throughout this season such as Jacob deGrom, Corey Seager, Leody Taveras and Ezequiel Duran but the Rangers continued to win.
When Seager went down Semien stepped up to fill the void from behind the plate.
When deGrom was sidelined, Dane Dunning left the bullpen and has been excellent filling in for the Rangers’ ace.
The Rangers have adopted a next-man-up mentality that has been on display all season.
With the exception of the injuries to, the starting pitching has been as good as the Rangers hoped heading into the season. The Rangers starting pitchers have an ERA of 3.11 which ranks second in the MLB.
The Rangers have two pitchers whose ERA ranks among the top-15 in the MLB with Nathan Eovaldi’s 2.42 (7th) and Jon Gray’s 2.81 (13th). If not for his injury, then Jacob deGrom’s 2.67 ERA would be in the top-15 as well.
Dunning and Ezequiel Duran were both players who were fighting for playing time coming into this season and now both have shown that they are indispensable to the Rangers.
Dunning has pitched well as both a starting pitcher and a reliever showing excellent versatility while going 4-0 with a 1.67 ERA this year.
Duran helped filled in for Seager when he went down and hit .301 with seven home runs and 23 RBIs. Duran’s excellent play was cut short by a right oblique injury that landed him on the injured list.
To win in the MLB you have to score runs. That’s the biggest reason the Rangers have had the success they’ve had to start the season is they’ve had the most dangerous offense in all of baseball.
The Rangers are top ten in the MLB in RBIs (2nd), hits (3rd), average (1st) and home runs (9th). The Rangers have scored ten or more runs 13 times, no other team in the MLB has 10 such games.