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Sunday a.m. Rangers stuff

Oh no!  The Rangers are below .500 in spring training!  Panic time!

Evan Grant has some notes up from yesterday's 2-1 loss to the Royals.  Of particular note (to me, anyway) is Nolan Ryan being interested in seeing Craig Gentry this spring, along with Grant's comment that Gentry is trailing Brandon Boggs in the backup outfielder pecking order.

T.R. Sullivan also has some game notes, saying that Josh Hamilton hopes to get 6 ABs in a B game this morning, and heaping high praise on Chris Davis for his defense at first base yesterday.

The S-T has some notes up, with updates on Hamilton and Julio Borbon, and some discussion of Chris Davis and where he is with his swing right now.

Jeff Wilson has a story up on Brandon McCarthy and the change he's made in his mechanics, in an effort to keep him healthy.

Randy Galloway has a column up on Chuck Greenberg.  Galloway says that Greenberg isn't able to hang out in Surprise, like Tom Hicks is, because Greenberg is working 12 hour days trying to "clean up" the financial mess Tom Hicks has made out of the Rangers.  I'm not one to defend Hicks, but I do feel it is worthwhile to note that most of the problems with the Rangers' lack of revenues comes from the fact that the team spent a decade being crappy, and fans tend to lose interest in a perpetually mediocre team.

There's also this encouraging quote:

Last week, a list of baseball Opening Day salaries for 2010 was released, and the Rangers had a payroll of $58 million, the lowest in nearly 15 years, and only 25th out of 30 teams.

"I saw that list," said Greenberg, "and, actually, I'm looking at a different number. I've got it maybe $10 million higher than that, but I know there are different ways to count the payroll dollars.

"No matter what it is, it's not enough, but that's no surprise. Yes, the Rangers are in the bottom half in payroll. No, that's not the way it should be."

I know there are a few contrarians out there who have peddled the "payroll doesn't matter" nonsense the past several years, but the reality is, it is easier to win with an $80 million payroll than with a $60 million payroll.  We're a lot more likely to see these guys the team is developing stick around long term, rather than get traded when they start getting expensive in arbitration, with an upper-half payroll than with a lower-half payroll.

Evan Grant writes that the key word in Nolan Ryan's 92 game prediction was not the 92 games, but "if," since Nolan's prediction was tempered by him saying that the team should win 92 games if the team is healthy and some things go right.  Grant looks at what the key "ifs" are for this team in 2010.

Sullivan has a story up saying that the Rangers "could have one of the best offensive teams in baseball this year," although the team he's referring to is the one in Oklahoma.  I still think that is overselling matters a bit, since two of the offensive studs Sullivan refers to are Chad Tracy and Craig Gentry, but there does seem to be some interesting positional talent in Oklahoma this year.  One just has to hope we don't have to dip into that pool too much this season, other than using guys as trade chips for a July acquisition.

Anthony Andro talks to Geoff Geary, who likes to surf.  I forgot Geary was even in camp with Texas until I read this.

Former Ranger Jason Grilli is likely out for the season after tearing a quad in a conditioning drill yesterday.  That's unfortunate...Grilli was solid for the Rangers last year before going on the d.l., and seemed to be a good guy.