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Saturday morning Texas Rangers things

Saturday morning Rangers news and links

MLB: Seattle Mariners at Texas Rangers Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning, folks...

The Texas Rangers have entered into a partnership with the Nippon Ham Fighters to cooperate in both baseball and business operations.

The Rangers signed free agent pitcher Brandon Cumpton to a minor league deal, prompting Evan Grant to bust out a “straight outta Cumpton” reference.

Gerry Fraley talks to a scout who says that Adrian Beltre is key to the Rangers’ chances for success in 2018. The scout also mentions something that I’ve thought is a big part of why the Rangers have been reluctant to move Beltre, even if they appear unlikely to win — the impact that watching Beltre prepare and do his job each day has on the Rangers’ young players who are still learning how to be major leaguers.

T.R. Sullivan has an Inbox column with questions on Willie Calhoun, J.T. Realmuto (and whether Willie Calhoun could headline a trade for him), while the Rangers traded away good prospects for rentals, and why the Rangers won’t spend to get sum pitchin’ in here.

The DMN has 10 things to know about Willie Calhoun, and Gerry Fraley says Calhoun will get every chance to win the left field job.

Despite a lot of innings in 2017, Alex Claudio is pitching in winter ball.