Rangers Sign Bruce Chen

The Rangers hope to add some competition to the fifth starter slot – they signed Bruce Chen today to a minor league non-roster deal.

I like the idea of signing Chen, but not for the Rangers.  He’s healthy, left-handed, and not quite 30.  He posted a fine 3.83 ERA in the AL East as recently as 2005.  However, the marriage of an extreme flyball pitcher and a ballpark that inflates homers by 12% doesn’t seem logical at first glance. 

Digging deeper, I found that Ameriquest only inflates right-handed HRs by 2%.  However, Chen is much better against righties despite his handedness.  Teams can stack their lineups with left-handed sluggers against him.  I still don’t get the signing.

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