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Monday before the ASG stuff

So, we're sitting in first place at the All Star Break, two games above .500 at 45-43. After 88 games last year, the Rangers were 46-42, but were 7 games behind Anaheim.

The Rangers are still in it, my own personal doubts about their ability to hang tough notwithstanding. Of course, the team now has an 11 game road trip spanning four cities immediately after the break, one of those trips that can break a season. Too often, it seems, the Rangers have hung around, bobbing about the .500 mark, until tanking on some wretched road trip and going 1-10 or something like that to drop out of contention. That can't happen over the next couple of weeks if the Rangers are going to stay in contention this year.

Various items from Evan Grant today...Kevin Millwood had a bullpen session yesterday that apparently went fine, and he's on track to start Friday against Baltimore. Kam Loe, meanwhile, is getting ready to go out on rehab, and the game plan is for his final rehab start to be July 27, which is right around the time that Adam Eaton is expected to make his Ranger debut.

Grant also says that Brad Wilkerson has gotten another cortisone shot in his shoulder. While Wilkerson has not been terrible, as some folks have suggested, he hasn't been great, either, and I'm starting to wonder how much his shoulder is affecting his ability to play right now.

Finally, Grant reports that John Danks is now being represented by Scott Boras. Can't say that I blame him...

Gerry Fraley has a piece on Eric Hurley this morning. Of particular note:

Hurley is trying to master the "Vulcan" change-up, favored by former Rangers reliever Danny Patterson. The "Vulcan" grip puts the ball between the middle and ring fingers.

Hurley's biggest task is fixing an ugly and rushed delivery.

Coming out of high school, he had a violent head-snap that disrupted the delivery. He has eliminated that action but still is not smooth. That can cause Hurley to miss the target by a wide margin.

Hadn't heard that about his delivery, which would seem to be a cause for concern.