The Rangers' 2014 season is a lost cause after four straight years of being serious pennant contenders and two-time winners. So why watch the rest of the season?
Reason: What are Tepesch and Martinez?
Looking for reasons to watch the Texas Rangers over the second half of the season, even though they're not headed anywhere good? Well, first of all, it's professional baseball. That should be enough. If it's not, the Rangers have some intriguing story lines and one of them is seeing how young starters Nick Martinez and Nick Tepesch fare the rest of the season and where they fit in 2015.
Tepesch has begun to look like he belongs in a big-league rotation, and if he continues on his current track could possibly be a quality No. 3 starter in 2015. Right now, it looks like the only sure bets for the 2015 rotation are Yu Darvish and Derek Holland, so the Rangers are going to look to fill in after that, both in-house and with off-season signings. Tepesch is 3-5 this season with a 4.31 ERA in 10 starts. The Rangers apparently are a fan of his demeanor and how he carries himself on the mound, and while his talents isn't upper-echelon, he could be a nice piece of the rotation for years to come at the ripe age of 25.
Martinez is in the same mold, but younger and more of a surprise. Remember, the 23-year-old righty wasn't anywhere near being in the Rangers' plans this year until the mass casualties began rolling in prior to the season. In a pinch, Martinez was thrown into the opening day rotation despite having pitched just five career games about the Class-A level. This season has been a roller coaster for him, as he's 1-6 with a 5.10 ERA, but he's had some big moments in his 11 starts. And the same goes for him, the Rangers seem to love his approach and his demeanor on the mound.