What if you could take a summer vacation to the Mount Rushmore of the Texas Rangers? Whose faces would you see? Here's our Rangers Rushmore. Give us yours.
Nolan Ryan: You could argue that he saved the franchise twice, first as a player and then overseeing the best years in franchise history. Ryan threw two of his no-hitters in a Rangers uniform, and the first ballot Hall of Famer crossed the 300-win and 5,000-strikeout barriers while in Texas. And yes, he also bloodied Robin Ventura, showing his toughness.
Pudge Rodriguez: He'll go into the Rangers Hall of Fame in August after 12 seasons in Texas that included 10 All-Star Game selections, 10 Gold Gloves and an AL MVP Award. Now with the organization as a coach and consultant, Rodriguez remains one of the most popular players in franchise history.
Michael Young: He was the face of the franchise for nearly a decade and the consummate professional. Young had more than 200 hits six times as a Ranger. He played three different positions and made the All-Star team as a shortstop and third baseman. He won an AL batting title and a Gold Glove. And he stuck it out during some dark times for the franchise before finally getting to the postseason the past three seasons. Young is now in Philadelphia, but his career was defined as a Ranger.
Juan Gonzalez: He played for the Rangers for 13 seasons in two different stints. Gonzalez won two AL MVP Awards and helped lead the Rangers to AL West titles in 1996, 1998 and 1999. They were the franchise's first division titles. He led the AL in home runs twice with Texas and has several of the club's offensive records.
Others who could get consideration (in no particular order):
Jon Daniels: He's still writing his legacy in Texas, but he's already the main architect of the franchise's highest point so far -- consecutive World Series appearances in 2010 and 2011. He pulled the trigger on the Cliff Lee deal, showing a willingness to trade highly touted Justin Smoak to do so, and the move was the difference in the Rangers winning their first playoff series.
Ron Washington: He'll end up as the most successful manager in club history whenever his tenure ends. You can fault him for some of his in-game strategy if you choose, but perhaps no team plays for a manager harder than the Rangers do. And when you have a talented team, that can be the difference between winning and losing a pennant. If we could put a blend of Daniels and Washington on Mount Ranger, we'd do it.
Charlie Hough: The knuckleballer was a critical member of the club's rotation for a decade.
Jim Sundberg: He won six straight Gold Gloves from 1976-81 and is among the club's all-time leaders in games played, at-bats, hits and walks. He's a terrific ambassador for the organization.
Tom Vandergriff: Without the former mayor of Arlington, the Rangers wouldn't be in Texas. He helped get Arlington Stadium built in 1965 and lured the Senators to Arlington for baseball to begin here in 1972. He was also a big part of getting Rangers Ballpark in Arlington built in time for the opening of the 1994 season.
Buddy Bell: Three-time Rangers player of the year and winner of six Gold Gloves at third base. Was also a four-time All-Star.
Rusty Greer: Few players were as popular with the fans as Greer, who posted a .305 career average in playing his entire career with Texas.
Tom Grieve: He has been a player, GM and now television analyst for this team. He's known as "Mr. Ranger" for a reason.
Johnny Oates: He managed the club to AL West titles in 1996, 1998 and 1999. His No. 26 jersey is retired, the only Ranger besides Ryan to have that honor.
Note: We could have extended this list of others considered but had to stop at some point.
Give us your four Mount Rangers and why you chose them.