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Daniels says Gagne signing was conditioned on Gagne closing

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An article by Tim Brown is up, on the Eric Gagne signing...

And he confirms what had been suspected, that Gagne wouldn't be a Ranger if he hadn't been promised the closing job:

"With Eric, that was somewhat of a prerequisite for getting him to come here," Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said Wednesday morning. "He wasn't going to go somewhere to set up. That was one of the reasons we said it up front."

There's also some encouraging stuff on Gagne's...well, stuff:

A scout from an organization that needed bullpen help pulled me aside at the winter meetings two weeks ago in Orlando. To his disappointment, his club wasn't in on Gagne.

"I'm not sure he'll ever get his fastball back," he said. "But, I think he's going to be the next Trevor Hoffman. His changeup is that good."

Many scouts hold the same opinion. As changeups go, it's Hoffman, Johan Santana, Fernando Rodney, Gagne and few others. Hoffman is pitching off an 85-mph fastball, and going on 500 saves. Why can't Gagne pitch off 90, and get on with his career?

"Is it a big risk?" Daniels said. "Every player out there is a big risk. But, in a one-year commitment, if he is healthy, you have a chance to hit a home run."