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Wednesday Morning Links

"Elvis Andrus, how can you be a leader when you're always smiling and are fun to watch and are good at baseball?"

Rick Yeatts

Per Jon Heyman, we've learned what Nelson Cruz is asking for in free agency and it's bananas.

Rafael Palmiero is so very sad about his dwindling Hall of Fame chances.

Evan Grant sat down with Elvis Andrus and asked him if Elvis is ready to be a leader, especially considering leaders are stoic stocks in the mud and Elvis is awesome and smiley and like a rainbow unicorn that plays shortstop.

Former Rangers, including Sideshow Sammy, Eric Gagne and Kenny Rogers, will be appearing on the Hall of Fame ballot this year.

Incidentally, I was always a big Kenny Rogers fan. When I was 14 my father and I were living by ourselves in a tiny apartment because apparently we are difficult people to live with. It was a crappy situation, and one night we were sitting outside Hooker's Hamburgers eating in silence when he told me, "Son, I want to tell you something about women... if you're talking to a man, you say 'I think Kenny Rogers is going to pitch a good game tonight.' If you're talking to a woman, you say 'I feel Kenny Rogers is going to pitch a good game tonight.'" Seeing as how we were living in a crappy apartment because neither of us possessed much wisdom about women, I didn't think much of the advice at the time.

Anyway, Kenny Rogers would go on to become the Ulysses S. Grant Grover Cleveland of non-consecutive terms of Rangers service and then go on to become the Preston Brooks of inappropriate Ranger ballpark violence. I don't know if he's deserving of a Hall of Fame vote, but he and Kevin Brown taught me that being a volatile jerk is forgivable if you're great at what you do.

Kevin Pucetas, who has converted to a full-blown knuckleballer, has ended his time in the Dominican Winter League at the urging of the Rangers front office.

Elvis Andrus and Ron Washington think Jurickson Profar has the talent to stick this year at second base.

Richard Durrett takes a look at the Ranger connections, both tenuous and not-so, on this year's Hall of Fame ballot.

Finally, here's an account of Preston Brooks' caning of Charles Sumner from our friends at the U.S. Senate.