Happy birthday to former Ranger Luis Vizcaino, who turns 34 today.
If you didn't realize Vizcaino was a former Ranger, that is understandable (and probably for the best). He was a Ranger for 5 days, and is yet another regrettable chapter in the legacy of John Hart.
Vizcaino was acquired by Hart late in spring training in 2002 in exchange for Justin Duchscherer, who Hart found to be expendable because he was a righty who didn't throw hard, and Hart had no use for righthanders who didn't throw hard.
Vizcaino was a solid reliever for the next several years, so that trade would have been okay, except Hart then dealt Vizcaino to the Milwaukee Brewers for Jesus Pena.
Why did all this happen? Well, Duchscherer needed to go to make room on the 40 man roster for guys like Dan Miceli, Rudy Seanez, Steve Woodard, Rich Rodriguez, Dave Burba and John Rocker, not to mention shiny new free agent acquisitions Todd Van Poppel and Jay Powell.
(And if you think I'm too leniant on Jon Daniels for letting Armando Galarraga go to make room for Jason Jennings, it may be that my expectations vis-a-vis 40 man roster management were drastically lowered by John Hart that spring. That was also the spring when Hart had to DFA Andy Pratt because of a procedural error involving recalling Ryan Dittfurth and putting him on the 40 man roster.)
Vizcaino was picked up because Hart felt Vizcaino, a hard throwing reliever, could be packaged with some other pieces to acquire a starting pitcher. It didn't work, so Vizcaino, was given away for pennies, totally neutralizing the Doug Mirabelli for Justin Duchscherer swindle, in the spiritual precursor to the Esteban German-Fabio Castro-Daniel Haigwood-Scott Shoemaker series of transactions that Daniels pulled off a couple of years ago.