Dan Szymborski’s ZiPS projections are a good measure of what to expect from players in the upcoming baseball season. We'll take a look at the Rangers' projections on a position-by-position basis. Szymborski can be found on Twitter at @DSzymborski.
Martin Perez was given a big extension — at least relative to what he was making, but a club-friendly one in the grand scheme of things — before he blew out his elbow and needed Tommy John surgery. This past season, he made his return and it went pretty dang well. Now, he's a full two years removed come May and will look to take the next step into being a formidable mid-rotation guy with upside.
Perez:19 starts, 108 1/3 innings pitched, 71 strikeouts, 32 walks, 11 home runs, 4.40 ERA, 5.9 K/9 innings, 2.66 BB/9 innings
So, about that whole "take the next step" thing ... if these numbers are what the Rangers get from Perez, it's going to be a sore disappointment. First off, the starts and innings would suggest a pretty significant disabled list stint, and second, the ERA would leave a lot to be desired considering it'd be basically the same as last season when he was fresh off Tommy John rehab.
Perez, at his finest, is a solid No. 2 quality guy, but we feel like he can consistently be a No. 3 starter, and a high-end one for that matter. The numbers this projects him at wouldn't so much suggest high-end No. 3 starter.