Earlier this afternoon, news of the Chicago White Sox putting Alex Rios on waivers made its way around baseball circles. Not long after that, a mystery team was said to have claimed Rios, but there was no indication who that team was.
FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal best guess was it would be the Texas Rangers who claim Rios, though nothing official had been announced.
Finally, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News broke the news that it was, in fact, the Rangers who claimed the White Sox outfielder. The two teams now have 72 hours to work out a trade, the White Sox could let Rios go without a fight, or they could pull him off waivers and tell the Rangers, “thanks, but no thanks.”
It’s well known the Rangers have thoroughly scouted Alex Rios over the last few months prior to the July 31 trade deadline. In fact, Mark Gonzales, the White Sox beat writer for the Chicago Tribune, told Buster Olney on Baseball Tonight’s podcast that Texas had three of its top scouts watching Rios.
If that doesn’t say “we’re interested,” I’m not sure what does.
Alex Rios isn’t the “impact bat” most Rangers fans want to see, especially since most fans want to talk about Miami Marlins outfielder Giancarlo Stanton, but you could argue Rios is the best bat that has been made available.
One thing is for certain, Alex Rios is a definite upgrade over David Murphy and that’s exactly what this team has been looking for.
With the Rangers turning into a running team, with Leonys Martin and Elvis Andrus stealing a combined 11 bases over the last two games against the Los Angeles Angels, bringing Rios into the fold would give them another speedster on the bases: He has 26 stolen bases in 32 attempts.
With Texas having an off day Thursday before a four-game set against the Houston Astros beginning Friday night, I’d almost be willing to wager a trade for Alex Rios gets worked out prior to that series getting underway. That would give Texas the opportunity to have Rios make the trip to Houston in time for first pitch.