ARLINGTON, Texas — The Rangers' promising season got waylaid over the weekend by the hottest team in baseball. After holding onto the hope of .500 -- and maybe even a Wild Card spot! -- Texas promptly got swept by the Mariners, who've now won 14 in a row.
But not all hope is lost.
And we'll take any nugget of optimism we can get.
ESPN baseball insider Buster Olney appeared on SportsCenter on Monday and dropped a somewhat surprising tidbit: In his opinion, after talking with front-office personnel around the league, the Rangers could be one of the teams best-positioned to land Juan Soto.
Soto, one of the most coveted players in baseball, is apparently destined for a trade after reports surfaced Saturday that he rejected a 15-year, $440 million contract from the Washington Nationals.
ESPN made the initial report, citing sources. Now, the report said, the Nationals are willing to listen to trade offers.
Olney on Monday listed the Rangers as No. 2 on Soto's list of potential suitors, behind the San Diego Padres.
For the Rangers, Olney pointed to one reason why it could be a possibility: Scott Boras, the high-profile player agent.
Boras represents Marcus Semien and Corey Seager, the Rangers' two massive free agent signings last winter. Boras also represents pitcher Kumar Rocker, who the Rangers drafted No. 3 overall in Sunday night's MLB Draft.
Granted, Olney's report wasn't the most rock-solid information. Nothing is imminent or even really rumored at this point.
But Rangers' fans might have another reason or two to wish upon a Soto star.
The club currently has its deepest wealth of prospect talent in years, both among hitters and pitchers. If the Nationals are looking for a haul of prospects, as they should, Texas might have the resources.
Also, the Rangers have been clear they're speeding up their rebuild and they're willing to spend money. They signed Semien and Seager to long-term deals, and also brought on pitcher Jon Gray. And even after their spending spree, the Rangers' 2022 payroll is league average, at 15th, according to Spotrac.
They have room to spend more. And Soto will require plenty more.
At 23, he's already a two-time All-Star. And despite a slow start this season, he's hit 20 homers and is leading the league with 79 walks.
He's not eligible for free agency until 2025, though the Nationals have been trying to lock him into a long-term contract.
And whoever deals for Soto will likely do the same.