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Saturday things

With the Rangers playing out the string, the big news is the return of Frankie Francisco, with T.R. Sullivan having some fairly lengthy stuff in his notes from yesterday about Francisco's return. It is worrisome that Francisco still hasn't regained his velocity, but Francisco says he thinks he's improved as a pitcher, and can be just as effective as a 94 mph fastball guy now as he was before as a 98 mph fastball guy.

Getting Francisco back and healthy for 2007 would be a huge boost for the Ranger pen...having that strikeout guy you can bring in in key situations, with runners on second and third and one out with a one run lead in the 8th, would be huge for this team.

Sullivan also says that Rod Barajas's back has improved to the point where he's expected to get the start behind the plate today. Gerald Laird has started the last seven games in a row before today.

Kat O'Brien also has a piece on Francisco's return in the S-T today.

Evan Grant says Scott Feldman is dropping his appeal of his suspension, due in part to family issues that caused him to leave the team yesterday. As long as the suspension is out of the way and done by the end of the season, it doesn't matter too much to me whether he serves the full suspension or gets it reduced.

Edinson Volquez is getting bumped in the rotation after all. Apparently, Robinson Tejeda will start tonight, with Adam Eaton going tomorrow, then Padilla and Millwood going Tuesday and Wednesday, with Volquez starting on Thursday.