As suspected, Texas Rangers GM Jon Daniels did indeed have a surprise signing before Spring Training ended. However, it was not Tim Lincecum, instead, Texas is set to sign Ian Desmond to a one-year, $8MM contract, pending a physical.
Desmond has played his entire 7-year career with the Washington Nationals at shortstop. Last season he batted a career-low .233 in 156 games.
IAN DESMOND CAREER STATS
Now, at 30-years-old, Desmond is expected to play in left field. He has played two games in the outfield, albeit both in right field, I suspect Desmond will be fine in LF. The question then becomes, how will the right-handed slugger fair against American League pitching? Again, I believe he gives the Rangers’ lineup a boost. At the very least, Desmond gives Jeff Banister the option of having a balanced lineup.
IAN DESMOND CAREER STATS VS. AL
It may take a few games of the regular season for Desmond to find his footing in left field but this should put most fans’ minds at ease knowing there is a more viable option than Nomar Mazara.