Grant Paulsen taped some conversations with Holland and Borbon yesterday, and aired them this morning on his show Minors and Majors (on SiriusXM). Paulsen remarked that the Ranger clubhouse was so calm and relaxed despite being in the mix for both the Wild Card and division title.
- With coming to the majors, Holland had to learn to attack the strike zone with all his pitches, and to have fun.
- Hitters are the biggest difference between the minors and majors; there is a reason they are in the majors.
- Holland feels to be successful, he has to be able to throw an offspeed pitch at any count.
- Grew up idolizing Thome, Griffey, and Greg Maddux. Holland's "I've made it" moment was playing against Thome.
- Holland likes to hit, but realizes that he is not any good at it. Paulsen asked if commissioner for a day, would Holland let pitchers bat in the AL. Holland said yes.
- Holland called the Rangers the "best team I've ever played for", says the team has great chemistry, and likened them to a family.
- Gets a lot of rookie hazing, but did not mention specifics.
- Talked a bit about all the nicknames CJ is giving out, but has no idea why he is Wonder Boy. Miguel Cabrera is also called Wonder Boy, which Holland thinks is cool.
- Holland is not a part of the fantasy football league that the Rangers created. Holland said it is probably just for the veterans. Paulsen asked if it was because they are afraid of the team Holland would put together. Holland joked that the veterans would not let him play because he would "clean house".
- Paulsen asked if the Rangers would see the season as a failure if they did not make the playoffs. Without hesitation, Holland said yes. The team feels they belong in the playoffs, they are confident they will get there, and are playing for the division title.
- Borbon feels that the biggest thing is being yourself and getting comfortable in the majors.
- Veterans have been as helpful as the coaches in helping Borbon make the transition to the majors.
- Borbon watches the veterans more than asking questions, and says it is important to know when to ask questions.
- He knows his style of game is as a speedy player and must do those things to be successful; good things will happen.
- Borbon said it feels good to know that the team believes he can still contribute as an offense only player (when starting as the DH).
- His first experience in the majors is contributing to a playoff race, which is satisfying.
- At the end of the day, Borbon realizes that this is still the same game (college, minors, or majors), and this has helped with his success.
- He was glad to get his first hit so early on in his time in the majors
- When stealing a base, the most important part is a good, safe lead (two steps plus two and a half shuffle steps depending on the pitcher). Then you need to know the pitcher's tendencies to pick your moment. The first few steps when you start to steal are key.
- Borbon talked about how much fun this team is having.
- Paulsen ended this interview with the same question about the season being a failure if they don't make the playoffs. Borbon said that when the season is over he will look back and make a judgement. However, he said that this team is "hungry" and is "hunting" for a playoff appearance.
Paulsen also has a theory that as more and more teams are eliminated from playoff consideration, the casual fan will start to root for the Rangers. Sure enough, a Reds fan called in to say that he is now rooting for the Rangers, and asked a question about their minor league pitchers.