Wednesday Happy Hour at the Elysian Fields Bar & Grill

Welcome to the Elysian Fields Bar and Grill, where a good bullpen catcher is always welcome.

— Jeff Banister on winning his first Major League game as a manager: “It’s big, not only for me but the coaching staff. There are some coaches who are young in experience at the Major League level. For all of us to get it out of the way, the excitement of the victory and any angst, we got that out of the way. Now that we got that out of the way, these guys can concentrate on what they need to concentrate on. It becomes the rhythm of the season.”EFBG

— Banister on his first beer shower after the victory: “Wonderful and it was cold. I loved every second of it. Somebody asked me if there was a point where I thought this would never happen and I said, ‘yeah, everyday.’ I never chased it but there was some long bus rides in some dusty towns in ballpaks with very few fans. I don’t take this one of 30 lightly. I make decisions that affect everybody.”

— The Rangers have not hit a home run in their first two games. The last time they went more than two games without a home run to start the season was in 1981. They went four games without a home run to start that season as they did in 1972. They have one extra basehit in two games. That hasn’t happened at the start of a season since 1978.

— Rougned Odor was hit by pitches in each of the first two games of the season. That’s the 20th time that has happened in Major League history. The last time was by Shin-Soo Choo with the Reds in 2013. The club record for overall consecutive games getting hit by a pitch is three by Scott Fletcher back in 1988.

— The Rangers have been hit four times in the first two games but drawn only one walk.

— Rangers pitcher Nick Martinez, who pitches on Thursday, has one of the best changeups on the staff, which is pretty good considering he was an infielder in college and didn’t have a changeup when he first started pitching professionally. How did he develop it? Said Martinez, “Panic. When I got drafted, I didn’t have a changeup. I knew I needed one so I worked hard to get one. It lit a fire under my tail. I wanted to be a big league starter and I needed to get one.”

— Martinez, on what went well for him in Spring Training that allowed him to win a job in the rotation: “Fastball command. It was the best I’ve ever had in Spring Training. I was back to my old self and walking less guys. Up to my last outing, I wasn’t walking anybody. It opens up my other pitches.”

— Just for the heck of it: Mike Stanley

— Neftali Feliz, after closing out the game on Tuesday, has been successful on his last 11 save opportunities going back to last season

— Colby Lewis has a .692 winning percentage against Oakland with a 9-4 record. That’s the fifth highest among active pitchers with at least 125 innings. His win on Tuesday was his 55th as a Ranger, tying Danny Darwin for ninth all-time.

— Bullpen catcher Josh Fraser celebrated his birthday on Wednesday

10 Comments

Thanks for bringing this feature back. Hope it doesn’t get discovered by the negative fans.

Good stuff, I enjoy your work Mr. Sullivan. Keep us Ranger junkies fed!

It is all about the pitching. Not sure why, we didn’t start out with our best one, Holland on Monday! If you can’t win in Oakland, well you have some issues. That park is a cavern, where fly balls go to die. It is only one start but Guardo is going to get killed in Arlington and will be plagued by the long ball all season, it seems. This team needs a right handed power bat and maybe a left handed one too. Someone needs to remind someone this team lost 95 games last year.

Just for the heck of it, Frank Gleiber, Gaylord Perry, Buddy Bell, and Al Oliver.

And my all-time favorite, Larry Parrish!

Can our bullpen catcher Josh Fraser block balls in the dirt? If he can, sign him up!

Over on the front page is the ballot for all time best Rangers. I am not that old, but there seems to be a TENDENCY to always evaluate things that we currently see. Here are my 4 top Rangers going back to the beginning: Sundberg, Bell, Rodriguez and Ryan. I have Young as #5. I loved Oliver, Parrish, Perry, Hough, Blyleven, Harrah, Gonzalez, Sierra and Young. The sad thing is Oliver, I see more as a Pirate, Bell more as a Indian and Ryan more as an Angel. However, no one has milked the Rangers organization for more money than that cookie recommending Tom Grieve. Just exactly how much cash has that guy stolen from the Rangers? Just for the heck of it Tom HENKE, a rule five pick from the Rangers on Grieve’s watch. Mistake. Sammy Sosa, Wilson Alvarez for Scott Fletcher and Harold Baines. Ron Darling and Walt Terrell for Lee Mazilli, Dave Righetti for a Sparky Lyle.

4 errors in three games by our loveable shortstop … don’t know if we can survive that.

Oh happy days … an opening split in Oakland – think it bodes well for the season. Don’t care for Elvis’ funky approach to the game or his errors, but he does have a fun attitude with the other players. Maybe hitting 7th or 8th will minimize his damage.

The guy to really appreciate this year? …… The Prince. He has a great attitude and will provide performance with being healthy, and a new big smile.

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