First Base: What Do the Rangers Do Now?

As if the Texas Rangers' luck could not get any worse, the club announced on Sunday that Mitch Moreland would miss at least three months after electing to have ankle reconstruction surgery to fix a nagging injury that has bothered him all season.

In one regard, you just have to say if he was going to do it, it might as well be this year, but on the other, you have to wonder what the Rangers are going to do a first base now.

There was a pretty prized free agent sitting around waiting to be signed in Kendrys Morales, and the Rangers were reportedly in on the sweepstakes, but he shocked the baseball world and signed with the Minnesota Twins on Saturday. The next day, Moreland was finished.

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Kevin Kouzmanoff entered the season as a backup corner infielder and proceeded to carry the Rangers' offense through April and then needing surgery of his own. He could return at some point this summer, but it's unknown when and you can really expect from the journeyman veteran who got off to a scorching start.

Jim Adduci was set to return from the DL over the weekend, but he aggravated his broken finger in a rehab game and now is up in the air, himself. He'd probably be the top option in-house, but if not him, then who?

The Rangers have had a good problem at catcher lately with Robinson Chirinos and Chris Gimenez both playing well beyond expectations. Ironically, both can also play first base, and Gimenez, in particular, has had a red-hot bat and could get some everyday at-bats. That would mean the Rangers would likely recall J.P. Arencibia from Triple-A Round Rock to serve as the backup catcher.

Donnie Murphy has had a couple of starts at first recently, but he's far from an ideal solution. There are also a few guys who could be trade candidates out there to be had, but at this point you have to wonder if the Rangers would consider making any deal worth it, especially considering no teams are going to be looking to give the Rangers a break in their asking price.

So basically, this is a huge pile of mess, and there really are no good options with Morales no longer available. Look for Adduci to get the first look, if he's healthy, and then for the Rangers to ride the hot bat of Gimenez if he's not.

Then, don't be shocked if whoever the winner is goes on the DL.

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