It’s could be an omen when the hype gets flowing.
Right around this time last year Adrian Beltre predicted his team’s latest acquisition would win the MVP award in 2014. The Rangers had just signed Prince Fielder, along with Shin-Soo Choo and Alex Rios to boost the team’s offence. The excitement was palpable. Texas became the most hyped team before Spring Training even got underway. We all pictured Fielder hitting third after Choo and Andrus, with Beltre protecting him in the clean-up spot, and Rios after that. On top of this, half of their games were to be played in the bandbox, whoops, I mean, Ballpark in Arlington, It was a perfect world. Too perfect. Too good to be true.
We all know what happened next. In short, Ian Kinsler’s wish came true, Texas had their worst season since 1985. They lost Fielder for the year on May 16, but up to that point he had been struggling quite badly, anyway. Fielder owners quickly went from stoked to choked. Choo battled injuries all year long after having a career year in Cincinnati, where he had an .885 OPS and 107 runs – not to mention, 21 HR and 20 SB. Rios had a lacklustre season where it seemed like he was just going through the motions. The pitching staff was hurt by injuries, as well. The team fell apart before they even had a chance to come together. So, what can we take from all of this?