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Richard Durrett has a piece in the DMN about Brad Wilkerson and David Dellucci being candidates for the leadoff job. Dellucci also voices some frustration over having to compete for playing time after his strong 2005 season, with Durrett acknowledging that Erubiel Durazo and Phil Nevin are fairly strong candidates to start the season at DH.

I'd go with Wilkerson in the leadoff slot, personally, although he'd also be a nice #2 hitter as well.

Tom Hicks says that payroll will be around $80 million, although on $65 million of that is for players on the team, with about $7 million going to the Yankees and another $7 million going to the Padres for players the Rangers paid those teams to take off their hands.

Kat O'Brien has a piece on the Rangers' hope for a resurgence from their pen in 2006. O'Brien says that 21 pitchers are in the mix for bullpen spots...and while all 21 of those guys may technically be candidates, I'm guessing that just a little more than half are realistic candidates. Still, there are plenty of guys to choose from, and the Rangers should be able to cobble together a solid pen from the pitchers available.

Randy Galloway has a rambling piece on Tom Hicks, saying that the two are on speaking terms again, but that Tommy Boy still needs to get payroll up to the $75 million range and kick John Hart out of Surprise.

And Jim Reeves' Postcards from the Ledge touches on what appears to be a desire by Buck Showalter to having Phil Nevin and Erubiel Durazo both make the team, with Wilkerson playing centerfield, which would put Mench and Dellucci at the outfield corners. If Nevin and Durazo can hit, that would be great, but that's a pretty huge "if"...