Two years after sitting down with Texas Rangers' general manager Jon Daniels for this positive story with the negative headline, I had a long chat with him last week.
Daniels deserves tons of credit for Texas' No. 1 farm system, for strokes of genius like Andruw Jones and Darren O'Day and Elvis Andrus, and for, let's face it, shoving the Rangers into a pennant race a year ahead of schedule.
But as Friday's trading deadline approaches, Daniels has a dilemma.
Pitchers like Ian Snell and Cliff Lee may no longer be available, but does he "go for it" and trade prospects for a pitcher who could push Texas closer to a title right here and now? Or does he "stick to it" and continue the patient, building process that has the Rangers stocked with one of the best futures in baseball?
Let's ask JD, shall we? ...
"It was easier to plot our progress in 2010 than 2009, but the players really determine that and they've played well enough to be in it this season," he said. "But, in reality, we're looking at this as a 10-year period of success, not one or two."
With that in mind, does Daniels mortgage some of his team's future for somewhat of an upgrade this year?
"No," he said emphatically. "Now, it is a challenge. Because you have to weigh everything. We have to find a middle ground. It's a clear vision that we're not going to be able to compete with the Yankees and Red Sox and Angels on the open free-agent market. The better baseball model for us is to hone and develop our own talent. But I also understand that this franchise and our fans haven't enjoyed a lot of success the past decade. So if there's a move we see fit to improve our club, we'll do it."
So what do you want, Rangers' fans:
Go For It or Stick With It?
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