Ok, so it's been a busy past few days for the Rangers. Now that I'm back from visiting family over the weekend let's take a look.
Probably the biggest news is the signing of Ian Kinsler to a long-term deal. Kinsler, shown here on #67 of the 2009 Allen and Ginter Code set, is now locked up through at least 2017. There is an option for 2018 as well. Seems like a good move to me, if Texas can keep winning. If they repeat their early 2000's nosedive then Ian could find himself on the trade block. Also, is is being reported that Texas mentioned during the negotiations that Kinsler could be asked to move to the outfield at some point in the future. Good move to mention that possibility now rather than waiting for the need to arise and then springing it on Ian.
Four games into the young 2012 season and the Rangers are at 3-1 and sitting in first place. Way early but these kind of starts are always good.
One of the Texas wins came last night for Yu Darvish. The long-awaited debut finally took place. Darvish got rocked for four runs in the first before settling down for the next 4.2 innings. All told Darvish coughed up five runs and would have taken the loss if not for the Texas offense. By the time he left the game in the sixth the score stood at 8-5. The Rangers would later add three more runs. Mitch Moreland, Nellie Cruz, Josh Hamilton, and Ian Kinsler will all be hitting Yu up for dinner after they hit home runs to rescue his first MLB win.
Good to see Nelson's bat show up last night. He, Mike Napoli, Elvis Andrus, and Adrian Beltre are all a bit cool at the plate coming out of the gate this year. Not sure I see any reason to hit the eject button yet on any of them though or even to be all that worried. All are capable of coming around and doing so very quickly once they get on track.
Robbie Ross has also arrived in the Bigs. In spite of wearing a kids cowboy outfit during his walk to the bullpen on Sunday he made good when called into the game. Coming in to start the eighth he worked a scoreless inning. Nice to see some more of the Rangers young arms coming up.
One last tidbit from T.R. Sullivan to close out the post. "Matt Harrison, after six scoreless innings on Sunday night, has a career ERA of 2.91 against the White Sox. That's the third-lowest by a Rangers pitcher with at least six starts against the White Sox. Jon Matlack had a 2.67 ERA and Bert Blyleven had a 2.68." Can't pass up a chance to point out a mention of Jon Matlack.