Bingo, I think we all agree we're going to have a take a risk every now and then. I do think they will be very calculated risks though, which is why we won't see the Rangers taking many of them.Truth is, I don't trust Nolan in free agency.
I understand letting Josh walk...it needs to happen. I will never understand why we couldn't have offered Cliff Lee (the only ace we've had since an aged Nolan Ryan) the extra year needed to keep him here. Now, while I like prudence, at some point Nolan & Co. are going to have to end the stubbornness and realize that in today's age, teams are having to add a couple bad years onto contracts just to acquire top notch free agents (i.e. Pujols, Fielder, etc.). There aren't going to be top of the line, young guys like Yu Darvish who will take a 5 year deal, just to get an opportunity to play in MLB, out there very often.
So, until I hear Nolan say: "You know what, we're going to sign ELITE PLAYER for seven years, knowing that even though ELITE PLAYER'S last two seasons won't be his best, that his first five years are going to put us into a great position to win", I'm always going to doubt this team.
The other thing is: How many premier free agents are coming out on the market these days? If you're young and a stud, chances are your team is stepping up to offer you an extension (Hamels, Cain, Votto, etc.) before you ever hit the market. Look at this years crop...
Zack Greinke is the best available. Remember us all discussing him a couple years ago. Most thought he was a good player, but not many thought he was a can't miss ace. Even now, if we sign him, are you for sure that he'll settle in here in Arlington?
Josh is probably #2 on that list...and chances are we're letting him walk (for numerous reasons).
Point is, there's not much after these two guys and you've got all the usual suspects that will be in on said top tier guys. So what does that leave us with? A trade?
Now I agree with Y2K and others...I'd rather deal Ian if we're dealing any of the 3 infielders in question. I disagree with simply moving him to the outfield IF a better outfielder can be had in a trade though. There are too many questions with Kinsler moving...can he play the position, after his "down" year what are you getting next year from him, etc.?
To sum this up (this got rather long, really quick)...
Will Nolan shell out the money to keep Andrus here when the time comes...even when the Yankees, in need of Jeter's replacement, offer him more years/money than he might be worth?
Will Andrus justify us having to overspend, especially when we will have Profar, a top prospect (now) and future star as cheap and already on the team?
Personally I want to keep the guy. I just don't trust the Rangers in free agency. Nolan is too stubborn (which isn't always a bad thing) at times, so to stay competitive, I really think this team is going to have to get active in a couple deals. Being that we're loaded at middle infielder, that is our best asset in a deal.
So, if Nolan isn't going to pull the trigger and give a top tier guy and the years and money that come with free agency...I think the only way he'll be able to achieve getting a top tier guy here is via trade. I don't expect the Greinke's/others of this world to sign here for cheaper/fewer years just because we're a good team. There are plenty of other good teams out there that will be willing to sign him also...AND give him the money/years he's going to want.