March, 2009 Galloway column leaks

I never break news...but this is too big for me to simply sit on...

Through a combination of quantum mechanical fluctuations and the temporary existence of a wormhole under my desk, I've managed to lay my hands on Randy Galloway's March 8, 2009, Sunday FWST column. 

I struggled with whether or not to publish this...the potential of paradoxii, the ethical dilemma of whether information from the future should be allowed to pollute the past...

But I figure I have an obligation that I owe to you, my readers...

Thus, for those of you who are willing to take the plunge, look after the jump for what you'll find under Galloway's picture in the FWST 4 months and 1 day from now...

Once again, the Rangers are trying to mess up a good thing.

You knew that this was going to happen.  Things have been too quiet in Surprise so far this spring.  Too much good news coming out of there, and Arlington, the past few months.  You had to know something bad had to be coming from the collection of the clueless when Nolan Ryan's back was turned.

Nolan, of course, has been busy working this spring with some of the young pitchers that the Rangers have collected, trying to put a halt to the coddling of guys like Derek Holland and Neftali Feliz that has been the norm.  Pitchers who might be in the rotation by now if the old Nervous Nellies hadn't tried to "protect" them.

Don't get me started on that.  Or Nolan, for that matter.  Back when he was in uniform, if anyone had even mentioned "pitch count" to him, they'd have gotten the Robin Ventura treatment.

Nolan has also been working on the fan base, trying to placate season ticket holders and convince Joe Sixpack that, in a down economy and with belt-tightening going on, he should spring for an 8 game mini-plan.

And pay more for tickets, while Tom Hicks once again refuses to pay to put a legit major league team on the field.

So Nolan has been preoccupied, trying to fix the pitching mess he inherited and get people to buy tickets.  He figured he could trust those on a short leash to follow his instructions.

But unfortunately for Nolan, the clowns he left in charge are finding new ways to make things worse.  Like insulting the team's franchise player.

The Rangers have a lot of problems.  But shortstop isn't one of them.  Michael Young is a pro's pro, a consummate professional who plays hard, plays hurt, gives you timely hits and reliable defense, and never complains.

At least, he never used to complain.  But that was before someone came to him a few days ago and asked him to start taking a few ground balls at third base.

Yes, that's right.  The Ranger brain trust has decided that Michael Young might need to change positions.

The guy who won a gold glove this past season.  The guy who already changed positions once, before the 2004 season.  The guy who shouldn't have to move again.

Nolan, Nolan, Nolan.  Please tell me you're going to break away from the minor league fields long enough to put a stop to this.  Please tell me you're going to tell Ron Washington to forget about moving Young to third base.

Of course, Washington isn't the one behind this move.  He may have been the messenger, but he isn't stupid.  He knows what he has in Young.

No, this is coming from the front office, from Jon Boy and his gang of computer nerds.  You see, there is this book called "The Fielding Bible," written by some folks who have never watched a game and who sit in front of their computers all day staring at spreadsheets.

The computers say that Young isn't a good defender at shortstop.  And that's good enough for Jon Boy and his pocket protector crowd.  Nevermind that managers throughout baseball -- people who watch the games, whose livelihood depends on evaluating players -- said that just last year Young was the best in the A.L. at playing shortstop.

Jon Boy thinks he knows better.  Or John Hart -- the guy wanted to get rid of Young in 2002 and fired Jerry Narron for playing him too much, the guy who is pulling Jon Boy's strings -- thinks he knows better.

Plus, Jon Boy desperately wants something to show for the Mark Teixeira trade.  Jarrod Saltalamacchia, the catcher who was supposedly the centerpiece of the deal, was shipped off to Boston a couple of months ago once Nolan figured out that Atlanta had snookered his g.m.  Thank goodness Nolan was able to get something for him, even if it was just a pitcher who threw a no hitter but then couldn't handle the pressure of pitching in Fenway. 

To justify the decision to give Teixeira away, Jon Boy desperately is trying to sell the idea that Elvis Andrus, a teenager who made errors by the bushelful in Frisco last season while barely hitting his weight, is ready to play every day. 

Jon Boy wants to blame the predictably bad results of his grab-butt pitching staff on Young.  And wants to sell the idea that somehow this error-prone kid who isn't old enough to drink is going to solve everything. 

And he's willing to risk alienating the best player the Rangers have to try to cover his own butt.

You know better than that, Nolan.  You know that, if this Andrus kid is really worth playing, well, you can ask him to move to third base, rather than the gold glove shortstop.  And you can tell your g.m. to stop trying to force moves down his manager's throat in an effort to make his bad trades look better.

You can tell him, if he wants to know why the Rangers allow so many runs, he should stop looking at Michael Young.

And start looking in the mirror.

Randy Galloway can be heard 3-6 p.m. weekdays on Greggo & Galloway on ESPN/103.3 FM.

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