The first day of the rest of our Nelson Cruz-less lives began yesterday. Later that night, the Rangers scored enough runs to make us forget that the Boomstick may have finally splintered for good.
Blair Angulo has the Rapid Reaction to the Rangers' late night 5-2 win over the Anaheim Angels. The Rangers have now gained four games in the A.L. West standings in a week.
T.R. Sullivan recaps the win and writes about Martin Perez having a second consecutive outstanding outing against the Angels while the offense showed a glimpse of how it will function sans Cruz.
Jeff Wilson has a piece on the Cruz suspension and writes that Rangers' players are already showing support for Cruz -- while not condoning his actions -- after he spoke to the team in the clubhouse yesterday afternoon.
Sullivan's report on Cruz's suspension includes various quotes from members of the Ranger front office such as Nolan Ryan and Jon Daniels. Needless to say, they don't sound thrilled. But they also don't sound surprised which might come as a shock to Bob Nightengale.
Calvin Watkins takes a break from dissecting Cowboys preseason action to write about Ron Washington remembering a time when he was also busted for drug use.
Sullivan writes about an emotional team meeting the Rangers had with Cruz and has quotes from various players saying they'd accept Cruz back for the playoffs.
Behind the DMN paywall, Evan Grant writes that a real replacement for Cruz is nowhere to be found, so the team will have to rely on the pitching staff to make the playoffs.
So who is the replacement for Cruz, you ask? Todd Wills helps you to get to know new Ranger "outfield" call-up Joey Butler.
Behind the DMN paywall, Tim Cowlishaw writes that even without Nelson Cruz for the stretch drive, the Rangers can win the West; they just have to adapt.
However, someone named Corbett Smith, whom I have never heard of, said on SportsDay On Air that losing Cruz is a "death nail" to the Rangers' postseason chances, whatever that means.
Matt Mosey writes that the Rangers should have done more to prepare for the loss of Cruz and that even the soft schedule may not help the team now.
Still concerned about the offense? Fret not. Sullivan and William Boor share Notebook duty and write that the cavalry is coming in the form of Lance Berkman who feels nearly ready for a rehab assignment.
Wilson's notes cover the Rangers going with a replace-Cruz-by-committee approach, Yu Darvish's stellar streak of starts, and other items.
Lastly, in some good news regarding the Rangers' offense, MLB.com's Adam Berry reports on Adrian Beltre being named the American League Player of the Month for the month of July.