Mulling the pitching

Used to watch the Wacky Races on Saturday morning – you remember Rufus Ruffcut and Sawtooth in the Buzzwagon don’t you? – but now review the Rangers pitching

1. Mike Maddux wants to keep his five starters in order through April and not skip anybody

2. Ron Washington wants a rotation where his bottom two starters – Matt Harrison and Scott Feldman – are matched up against the bottom two on other teams.

3. Washington said Kris Benson still has a shot for the rotation. People still seem to kick around the idea of Scott Feldman in the bullpen.

4. Josh Rupe was much better Friday night against the Brewers with a three-groundball inning. He moved to the first base side of the rubber and it seemed to make a big difference.

5. Seems Washington really wants Derrick Turnbow to make this bullpen. The Rangers are going to take a hard look at him in the next few days.

6. Derek Holland and Neftali Feliz are still here although everybody keeps saying they won’t be come Opening Day.

7. Camp seems split on whether to try Jason Jennings in the rotation or the bullpen.

8. Seems like Tommy Hunter and Dustin Nippert are bound for the disabled list to start the season.



Camp is split often, it seems. On the one side we have JD and and the ‘develop a long-term winner camp’. Give youth a chance, and potential overrules veterans’ performance from 5 years ago before they got hurt.

On the other side is JD’s very own hire – baseball man – who’s adoption of the the long term strategy may ensure that he won’t be here. Play veterans now, because there may not be a tomorrow. Youth is streaky and unpredictable. We know what we’re going to get from veterans.

That couple continues to strike me as exceptionally odd, especially given JD’s defense of baseball man.

Also per item #2 in the post, maybe baseball man can call the managers of the other teams we will be playing in April and ask them real nice if they will please pitch their number five pitcher against Feldman/Benson to give us a chance. Maybe in exchange he can offer to manage the bullpen the way he did last season…

Any discussion on the Vizquel-Arias decision for the utility spot and how Vizquel takes grabbing a 40 man roster spot away from a potential pitcher?

Vizquel can be added to one of the 40 man roster spots cleared when Huley and Benoit are moved to the 60 day DL.

Man, the middle relief corps coming out of camp must be clear as mud right now. Until the starters finish getting stretched out (especially 3-5) the ‘pen is going to have to suck up quite a bit of April and the candiates for the middle stuff have not exactly been average much less stellar to this point. Hopefully Rupe’s adjustment will put him back on track. When he is right, he can chew up a lot of innings. We just need another one like him, I guess that is what motivates all of the Feldman to the ‘pen talk. Career -wise, Feldman may have a much longer and successful career out of the ‘pen, so it may not be all bad.

The offense better come out hot because I think I see alot of 7-5 and 8-6 games early on. I really feel the front end of the bullpen will not be settled unitl after a copuple of weeks into the season so the Rangers are gonna have to just outscore the other guys (again…) I’d love to have more optimisim but the front end of the ‘pen is a bit unnerving right now. It has made me hold off on the mini-plan I was set on for a couple more days.

1. Millwood
2. Padilla
3. Benson
4. McCarthy
5. Harrison

9th Francisco
8th Guardado
8th Wilson
Mid Madrigal
Mid Rupe
Mid Jennings
Long Feldman

AAA Turnbow
DL Hurley, Benoit, Hunter, Nippert, Eyre

That gives 7 starters without having to make a roster move?

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