Forget Oswalt; find offensive help

The rumors about Nolan Ryan and Co. being involved in the Roy Oswalt sweepstakes are sexy, but I’d rather see the Rangers make a more low-profile move to add offense.

While Oswalt would be arguably the best ace in Rangers history, it’s far-fetched to believe this franchise can afford him. I’m referring to the price Texas would have to pay in premier prospects as much as the $28 million remaining on Oswalt’s contract.

Ignore the slogan declaring that this season is the Rangers’ time. This is a franchise that might be able to contend this season, but should be able to contend for several years in the near future. The long-term future is more important than immediate dividends.

Plus, starting pitching isn’t the Rangers’ most pressing need right now. They’ve got to address the fact that the lineup falls off a cliff once it hits the seventh spot.

The Rangers can’t afford to keep getting such subpar production from their first basemen and catchers. Justin Smoak might have an All-Star future, but he clearly needs more seasoning before playing every day for a team in a pennant race. Matt Treanor has done a commendable job handling the pitching staff, but a punchless bat flirting with the Mendoza Line kills the offense.

I like Jon Daniels’ chances of finding a reasonable deal to fill one of those holes much more than the odds of Oswalt moving up I-45.