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Wednesday a.m. Rangers stuff

This team is maddening sometimes.  Bad Cliff Lee showed up, the pitchers made three errors (although only two were "official" errors), and Alexi Ogando had about as bad a relief outing as I've seen, walking Yuniesky Betancourt on four pitches, with the second ball a pitch that was a great Matt Treanor stop away from being a walk-off wild pitch, and the fourth ball being a walk-off wild pitch. 

Jeff Wilson's game story has Cliff Lee saying that, with the amount of runs the team scored, they should have won the game, and that he didn't do a good job keeping the team in the game.

In T.R. Sullivan's game story, Matt Treanor accepts the blame for allowing the game-winning wild pitch to get by, although from this viewer's perspective, it was an awful pitch that Treanor would have had to have been extremely lucky to block.

Richard Durrett has post-game quotes from Lee on his start.

Wilson has a story about Josh Hamilton's balky knee...the feeling is the shot and day off today, and the day off tomorrow, should have Hamilton ready to go on Friday against Minnesota, but the Rangers will consider giving him more days off or using him at DH to try to rest his knee.

There's another option for the Rangers to look at when Hamilton is sitting, with Jeff Francoeur joining the team, in a deal for Joaquin Arias plus cash (the Mets are paying the difference in salaries).  Brandon Boggs, who is out of options after this season and pretty clearly not in the team's long-term plans, was designated for assignment to make room for Francoeur, and I'm not sure if the Rangers will try to run him through waivers, or will seek to make a deal.

Dan Szymborski makes clear his disdain for the move, and Kevin Goldstein says the Rangers "have seemingly crossed the line from doing things to improve the club to grasping at straws."  I got a message from a Mets blogger overnight, expressing his sorrow that we are stuck with Francoeur.  The Twitterverse and blogosphere has generally been quite snarky and critical of this move.

I don't get the derision, though.  The Rangers gave up nothing to get him.  He'll provide the Rangers with a backup outfielder and righthanded bench bat.  He's not going to have a meaningful plate appearance against a righthanded pitcher this year, and he's been good enough against lefties that he's worth having on the bench.  Given the lefty-heavy nature of the Ranger lineup, and the fact that Jorge Cantu is probably the best righthanded bench bat right now, it is a reasonable no-cost pickup.

As Jamey Newberg mentioned this morning, this is a move that is ignored if it is a different player, but because it is Frenchy, who was heralded as a stud, busted, and has been widely ridiculed for embracing his free-swinging, low-OBP ways while being lionized by the press, the move gets a lot more attention and a lot more of a reaction, whether justified or not.

Durrett has quotes from Francoeur about joining the Rangers.

T.R. Sullivan's notes include discussion of Rich Harden going to the bullpen and the expected roster expansion moves.  Sullivan indicates a pitcher will be added today, and Ian Kinsler and Cristian Guzman activated from the disabled list, with more additions likely in the coming days.