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Sunday morning Rangers stuff

MLB Photos via Getty Images

The Rangers are A.L. West Champs.  The next 8 games are a victory march, and an opportunity to get some guys some rest and get the rotation lined up for the ALDS. 

And with the Tampa Bay Rays up 2 games in the loss column in the A.L. East, and Baltimore and Kansas City on tap next week, it is looking more like the ALDS will be against the Rays, rather than the Yankees

Jeff Wilson's game story talks about how the playoff-clinching victory yesterday, like much of the Rangers' season, wasn't easy, but the team ended up getting it done.

Richard Durrett has his thoughts on yesterday's game at ESPN Dallas.

Evan Grant writes about the playoffs being reward for the players who have fought through obstacles during a long, strange season.

T.R. Sullivan has reactions from the players about winning the A.L. West.

Gil Lebreton has a column about the Rangers' celebrating their playoff berth.

Anthony Andro has a story about yesterday's unlikely hero, Jorge Cantu, who busted out after being in a slump from virtually the time he arrived in Texas in July.

T.R. Sullivan has Nolan Ryan's take on the Rangers winning the West, with Nolan Ryan saying he's proud of the team and the organization for getting to this point.

Andro has updates on Josh Hamilton, who didn't have any muscle spasms yesterday, and Frank Francisco on their journey back from injury, along with Nelson Cruz's thoughts on playing left field.

Sullivan's notes talk about why Ron Washington stuck with Jorge Cantu on Saturday, and advice Josh Hamilton got from Jacoby Ellsbury about dealing with his rib problem.

Tom Singer writes that the turning point for the Rangers' season was on June 8, when Texas, having just fallen out of first place the day before, slapped around Felix Hernandez while getting a strong outing from Colby Lewis to beat the Mariners, 7-1, and re-capture first place for good.

Sullivan talks about the potential ALDS matchup and the Rangers roster decisions for the playoff roster.  Sullivan has some surprising items in there, saying that Matt Harrison has a roster spot locked up, that Dustin Nippert likely will make the playoff roster if Frank Francisco isn't ready to go, and that the Rangers may opt to go with Chris Davis instead of Mitch Moreland as their lefty-hitting first baseman.