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Thursday a.m. things

Back to 11 under. Rough return for LSB faves Jason Botts and Gerald Laird, who were a combined 0 for 10 yesterday, but Botts came through with a big sac fly in extra innings, and the Rangers are back to 11 under.

And I have to say, I'll be a little surprised if John Rheinecker gets another start this season.

Evan Grant talks about the drama surrounding the Botts callup and the relegation of Sammy Sosa to a bench role. My guess is that the late announcement of the promotion, and the Travis Metcalf demotion, was because, if Sosa had objected to the reduced role, the Rangers would have agreed to give him his release.

Jean-Jacques Taylor discusses the promotion, although he also suggests that the Rangers should cut bait with Botts if he doesn't perform in the 150-200 plate appearances he'll get the rest of the way. I think that would be a mistake...Botts may very well be the answer, but I don't think that, if he struggles the rest of the way, that tells you that we should "consider him a really good Triple-A player who can't make one of the most difficult jumps in sports," as Taylor says.

Grant also mentions that Kason Gabbard will be making his first Ranger start tomorrow. I'm not as hyped about Gabbard as a lot of people seem to be -- his exceedingly low BABIP suggests that his low ERA is illusory -- but if he can give the Rangers a 5.00 ERA out of the #5 slot, you can live with that.

Grant also mentions the trade that was causing so much wailing and gnashing of teeth earlier this season:

The much-debated trade of John Danks and Nick Masset for Brandon McCarthy last winter is starting to look more and more even. Danks was knocked out after four innings by the New York Yankees on Wednesday, raising his ERA to 5.06. McCarthy, who beat Cleveland on Tuesday, is at 5.18.

And Masset (whom Daniels appears to have sold high on) is back in the minors, after posting a 7+ ERA in the ChiSox pen, while McCarthy has a 3.69 ERA since May 1.

Even with Masset looking like a non-factor, if Danks and McCarthy are a coin-flip, this trade is a loss for the Rangers, given that McCarthy is f.a. eligible a year sooner than Danks (and, realistically, it would be two years sooner if Danks had stayed in Texas, because the Rangers wouldn't have put Danks in the rotation at the start of this season, and thus wouldn't have started his clock). Still, it is a far cry from earlier this season, when there were those who were claiming Daniels was "in over his head" and was "fleeced" for giving up two great pitching prospects for a guy who the ChiSox gave up on...

And what will, hopefully, be the last of the discussions about the Mark Teixeira contract offer...Teixeira confirmed that he rejected the Rangers offer of 8 years, $140 million earlier this season...