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Thursday a.m. things

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Wow...single digits below .500, for the first time since May 22, when the Rangers fell 7-1 to Johan Santana and the Twins to drop to 18-28 on the season. The Ranger outfield in that game was Victor Diaz, Kevin Mahar, and Nelson Cruz, Matt Kata played third base, and some guy who is now with the Braves was at first base.

And the Vicente Padilla from yesterday is the one who was around for much of last season, who earned the $34 million contract he received last offseason.

While there seems to be a groundswell of "get rid of Padilla even if you have to release him" sentiment out there, the guy has had success in the past...and even if you don't think he's part of the future, at the very least, it would make sense to hang onto him and see if he can put up a solid first half next year, which would make him an attractive trade commodity come next July.

Evan Grant asks if the Rangers can get to .500 on the season. While that seems a longshot -- they'd have to go 16-7 the rest of the way -- catching the third place Oakland A's does seem like a possibility.

Grant also mentions that Akinori Otsuka is throwing off of flat ground again, and still hopes to make it back before season's end, while Hank Blalock is expected to play third base sometime next week.

Jean-Jacques Taylor says Sammy Sosa is a changed man, but still shouldn't be back next year.