Nice effort from the pitchers yesterday, and in particular, Vicente Padilla. The fact that he periodically goes out there, works quickly, and throws strikes like that makes it all the more frustrating when the Bad Padilla shows up.
Gil LeBreton says Padilla pitched like an ace yesterday, and says that Padilla is possibly the most under-appreciated starting pitcher in team history.
Anthony Andro says that the starting pitchers are providing the Rangers with some reason for optimism, based on their performance so far this spring. Mike Maddux praises them for throwing strikes and getting through innings without throwing a ton of pitches so far this spring.
Evan Grant says that the only roster spots open for grabs are four spots in the bullpen, with eight pitchers vying for them. He has Josh Rupe, Dustin Nippert, Warner Madrigal, and Brendan Donnelly landing those four spots. Personally, I still think Madrigal starts the season in AAA, with two guys from the Donnelly/Willie Eyre/Derrick Turnbow trio making the team. And again, not to sound like a broken record, but given that the Rangers gave Eyre a minor league contract last year, despite the fact that he wasn't going to be able to pitch, then sent him to the AFL and added him to the 40 man roster, suggests, to me, that one of those slots is his to lose.
Chris Davis sat yesterday, as he's trying to break out of a slump that has hounded him this spring, while Hank Blalock played first base. Ron Washington says that Blalock will get some time at first base and third base this spring, and I guess Washington could be viewing Blalock as the primary option at third when Michael Young needs a day off.
Tim Cowlishaw has a column up on how the Rangers need their top ranked farm system to start producing some arms in order to get back into the playoffs. He also says that the Rangers may have the best bullpen in the division this year, although he lists Joaquin Benoit as one of those who will be setting up Frankie Francisco.