For a long time, it appeared the Texas Rangers might be one of the favorites to land the big fish in the free agent pitching market this winter, Japanese import Masahiro Tanaka.
But as time went on, it became evident the Rangers weren't interested in throwing big money at Tanaka two years after signing Yu Darvish, who most baseball people agree is better than Tanaka.
As we learned Wednesday, Tanaka's price was larger than anyone could've imagined as his expected $120 million price tag went up to $155 million over seven years as he signed with the New York Yankees.
So now that Tanaka is off the market, everyone behind him can start filing in, and those are the arms the Rangers are looking at — the Bronson Arroyo, Bruce Chen, Jerome Williams types.
"Our offseason goals, first and foremost, were to address the offense," Daniels told ESPN Dallas. "We were pretty aggressive in spending our resources there. You can always add depth."
The Rangers' pitching urgency was upped recently when Derek Holland underwent microfracture surgery on his knee and is expected to miss at least half of the upcoming season. But Daniels said the club can either fill the need from outside or from within with young arms like Robbie Ross or even veteran ones coming off injury like Colby Lewis, who hasn't pitched in the majors since 2012.
"We’re looking at guys we think can come in and provide us with depth and maybe competition in camp," Daniels said. "There are always guys signed this time of year that end up playing big roles on good clubs. You have to trust your scouts, trust your people and make good evaluations."