3 games over .500, 7.5 games out of first place. Personally, right now, I root for the Angels to beat the A's when they are playing each other (like last night)...I don't figure there's much chance we'll catch Anaheim, but I'd like to see the Rangers finish in 2nd place for the first time in this millenium. And the Rangers are 2.5 games back of Oakland.
Jeff Wilson says that the Rangers believe that they can make things interesting in the second half if they can get some consistent starting pitching. Kevin Millwood didn't provide that last night...he's not 100% healthy, apparently, but he was disappointing once again yesterday.
Richard Durrett has updates on injured pitchers, with Vicente Padilla improving and apparently looking ready to go soon after the break. Padilla will start Sunday if all goes well. Eric Hurley will do a 90 pitch rehab start with Frisco on Monday, and then start on Saturday, in the Rangers' second game after the break. Kason Gabbard isn't throwing yet, and Mark Connor said that Gabbard can't go to the bullpen when he returns, because it takes too long for him to warm up.
Jim Reeves' Sunday notes column is all about the Rangers, with thoughts on Milton Bradley (he likes him, particularly the way Bradley yelled at the Angels after one of the home plate collisions with Max Ramirez last week) and Matt Harrison (he likes him, too). Reeves also suggests that the Rangers should have Nelson Cruz up instead of Brandon Boggs, although it looks like Cruz will be getting shipped out in the next 3 weeks.
Evan Grant runs down his first half award winners, with Ian Kinsler, Roy Halladay, and Evan Longoria getting the big three awards in the A.L. I think the A.L. MVP is a coin flip between Kinsler and Grady Sizemore (who was Evan's April pick), and either of those guys would be justifiable choices.
The Boston Globe says that the Rangers are Nolan Ryan's team, and Texas will look to move veterans for prospects they can use to trade for pitching this offseason.
Larry Stone in the Seattle Times says that the Rangers aren't really buyers or sellers yet, as they've got vets to deal but are still close to the Angels.
Personally, I think the Rangers are going to move Frank Catalanotto and Hank Blalock for whatever they can get by the end of the month, but aren't going to deal Eddie Guardado or Milton Bradley unless they are blown away. If Vicente Padilla comes back on schedule, he'll have 2 starts before the July 31 deadline, and if he pitches well, I could see him get moved for a decent return.