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A few Sunday notes

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The Rangers are 3.5 games up in the A.L. West, and the Mavs are heading to the NBA Finals...

Things are good today...

A couple of things to take note of...Evan Grant says Gerald Laird and Jerry Hairston Jr. will both be starting today, and suggests that Laird may start playing more regularly against lefties. Rod Barajas isn't hitting lefties at all this year, but he isn't really hitting righthanders, either, and after seeming to heat up in May, he's gone 7 for his last 35, sliding back into unproductivity.

Grant also says that Frankie Francisco was at 89-93 mph in his first rehab appearances, but that the Rangers aren't expecting him back until July.

Kat O'Brien says that Antonio Alfonseca is expected to be activated on Tuesday, after a final rehab appearance today, but that no decision has been made on who will be dropped from the 25 man roster to make room for him. As I said last night, my guess is that Joaquin Benoit will be DFA'd, but Scott Feldman and D'Angelo Jimenez are other possible roster casualties, although I think the team would be hesitant to go with just a three man bench.

T.R. Sullivan comments on Ian Kinsler sliding up in the batting order, noting that the only other time he hit anywhere other than ninth in the lineup was the game he dislocated his finger.

Sullivan says Buck Showalter sees Kinsler ultimately being a #2 hitter, which would allow him to slide Young, Teixeira and Blalock each down in the order one spot apiece. I think such a re-arrangement would be a good thing, and I certainly hope Kinsler keeps hitting well enough to give Buck an incentive to make that move.

Finally, if you didn't see it already, Albert Pujols pulled an oblique muscle yesterday, and is supposed to be out for up to six weeks. Bad news for the Cardinals, and bad news for my already struggling fantasy team.