Last Call from the Desert….Dodgers have pitching to trade
“If we were a second division team, these guys would have complaint. We’re not a second division team. We’re here to win.”
Rangers manager Ron Washington on sending players back to the Minor Leagues.
The Rangers sent a scout to watch Dodgers pitcher Chris Capuano pitch seven scoreless innings in a Minor League game on Monday. The Rangers are also expected to scout Dodgers pitcher Aaron Harang on Tuesday night against the Rockies.
The Dodgers have surplus pitching to trade and the Rangers are still uncertain about their fifth starter spot. There could be some discussions in the waning days of Spring Training. Right now the Rangers have three in-house candidates: rookie Nick Tepesch, veteran right-hander Derek Lowe and left-hander Michael Kirkman.
Kirkman has pitched great in camp but the Rangers need him in the bullpen. Lowe was a late signing for the Rangers and is probably going to be used as a starter. Tepesch has had a good camp but was roughed up in his last start against the Rockies, allowing eight runs in five-plus innings on Friday.
His next outing is scheduled for Wednesday. He has never pitched above Double A. The Rangers have to consider all possibilities. They never made an offer for Kyle Lohse, who signed with the Brewers on Monday, but they may not be done looking. They are at least keeping their scouts busy.
Derek Holland has his first hit in a Rangers uniform. Holland delivered an RBI single in the second inning off of Padres starter Jason Marquis, catching one off the end of the bat and lifting it over second baseman Jedd Gyorko.
Holland was hitless in three previous career at-bats during Spring Training, he is 0-for-7 in his career during the regular season and hitless in one post-season at-bat.
“We were having a good time with that,” Holland said. “I knocked the cover off the ball.”
Holland on his World Baseball Classic experience, “The atmosphere, I rank it as high as the World Series…playing for your country. It definitely got me ready for the season. I definitely feel a step ahead of where I normally am.”
Rangers pitcher Derek Lowe is familiar with Florida Gulf Coast University, the school that has shocked everybody in the NCAA tournament. He lives just minutes away from the campus in Fort Myers, Fla., and works out there during the off-season.
“All the time,” Lowe said. “When we get close to Spring Training, that’s where we do our bullpens and our running. The coach lives in my community, when I see him, we’ll have to have some jabbering.
“This is their second year in Division One basketball, how incredible is that? For a small school to be able to do that, you can’t place a price tag on how big that is for recruiting.”
Joe Nathan struck out the side in his one inning of work in a Minor League game on Monday.