Light trade winds
Now comes the time of year when trade talks pick up. Nothing major but…
The Reds, Brewers, Devil Rays and Padres have all called the Rangers and asked about catcher Gerald Laird. Problem is they look at him as a potential backup and the Rangers see him as their Opening Day catcher. The Rangers still think Jarrod Saltalamacchia needs to finish off his catching skills at Triple A and have Adam Melhuse – who has looked good this spring – be the backup.
The Mariners and the Devil Rays have at least inquired about outfielder Nelson Cruz, who doesn’t appear likely to make the team. Seems like the Mets could use some outfield help as well. The Rangers seem to be internally debating the question of Kevin Mench vs. Jason Botts for the final spot on the roster.
The Botts vs. Mench debate is especially fierce. This is going to be an interesting decision because either way will not be unanimous.
The Marlon Byrd/Cubs rumor continues to persist. But the Cubs won’t give up the young pitching that the Rangers initially demanded. The Rangers also aren’t inclined to give up some of their outfield depth because of health uncertainties involving Milton Bradley and Josh Hamilton.
Some Japanese clubs have asked about some of the Rangers excess relievers.