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Sunday morning stuff

Something of note...the Rangers have had fewer home games than any other team in baseball this year, and no team has had more road games than the Rangers thusfar.  Which would seem to bode well for the Rangers' record over the last couple of months...

Evan Grant says Ian Kinsler is a beast, and almost certainly will be an All-Star.  Kinsler has a .314 EQA on the season, with a .325/.383/.532 line.  And Anthony Andro has praise for Scott Feldman's performance yesterday, as he was moved up (after having been moved back) to fill in for Eric Hurley.

Hurley expects that he'll be able to start on Tuesday.  In other injured pitcher news, A.J. Murray has yet to throw since going on the d.l., Doug Mathis has started doing long-toss, and Thomas Diamond has undergone foot surgery and will miss three weeks.

Vicente Padilla is going to throw a bullpen session today, and at that point, should know whether he'll be able to pitch against the Angels, or if they'll need to press Dustin Nippert into spot start duties or call up Matt Harrison.

Jim Reeves has some interesting notes about Josh Hamilton and the Home Run Derby:

Hitting coach Rudy Jaramillo isn’t particularly thrilled that Josh Hamilton is going to take part in that event, but he also sees the bigger picture.

"It’ll mess up his swing," Jaramillo said with a shrug, "but what are you gonna do?"

Jaramillo understands that part of Hamilton’s day-to-day struggle is with a major sense of insecurity and that it could be bolstered tremendously by his appearance on such a major national stage.

"He can use the validation," Jaramillo said.

Reeves also has some news about the Michel Inoa signing:

The Rangers were not at all happy about losing out on 16-year-old Dominican right-hander Michael Inoa to the A’s last week, and not just because Inoa cited Oakland’s better pitching-development program as his reason for signing with them.

The Rangers felt like the A’s, who gave Inoa a $4.25 million signing bonus, most ever to a non-Cuban pitcher from Latin America, violated the rules by cutting an early deal with the 6-foot-7, 205-pounder.

According to MLB rules, teams are not even allowed to discuss money with players before the July 2 deadline. The Rangers were prepared to offer a larger signing bonus — well over $5 million, according to some reports — and word on the street is that afterward Inoa’s agent told a Rangers official that they would have taken the bigger deal if they had known it was coming and hadn’t already committed to the A’s.

If that’s true, then the deal was always more about money than about pitcher-development reputations.

T.R. Sullivan has some bloggy notes up, with some thoughts on Kinsler, Julio Franco, and the need for another lefty reliever, among other things...