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Akinori Otsuka in the News
Prior, Otsuka top non-tender list: Cubs pitcher Mark Prior, Rangers reliever Akinori Otsuka, Astros shortstop Adam Everett and Mets catcher Johnny Estrada were among 43 players non-tendered by their clubs by Wednesday's midnight deadline, according to a filing obtained by SI.com.
Wilson loves to 'shred': As a hard-throwing reliever for the Texas Rangers, C.J. Wilson would like to stay in the closer's role he inherited when Akinori Otsuka went on the disabled list and Eric Gagne was traded last season. Off the field, however, Wilson has other big-time aspirations for the future: he's a burgeoning rock guitarist.
Rangers ex-closer Otsuka likely done for season: Reliever Akinori Otsuka likely won't pitch again this season even after three doctors who examined his sore right elbow found no structural damage.
Rangers closer Otsuka to get 3rd opinion on elbow: Texas Rangers closer Akinori Otsuka will seek a third opinion on his sore right elbow from noted orthopedist Dr. James Andrews.
Closeout sale nets starter:
Rangers get lefty for GagnéThe Rangers traded closer Eric Gagné to the Red Sox just before Tuesday's deadline for left-handed starting pitcher Kason Gabbard and minor league outfielders David Murphy and Engel Beltre. Gabbard (4-0, 3.73 ERA) will join the starting rotation.Salty-Teixeira deal completeThe Rangers also got left-handed pitchers Matt Harrison and Beau Jones in the deal that sent Mark Teixeira and Ron Mahay to the Braves for catcher/first baseman Jarrod Saltalamacchia and four minor leaguers (shortstop Elvis Andrus and pitcher Neftali Feliz are the other two). Harrison was rated as the Braves'No. 3 prospect byBaseball America.Sosa stays put; Laird still catchingThe Rangers weren't able to trade Sammy Sosa, which will make it more difficult to give Jason Botts time at designated hitter. He is hitting .320 with 13 home runs at Triple A Oklahoma. Saltalamacchia will play first base and back up Gerald Laird at catcher.Their assignmentsSaltalamacchia and Gabbard are expected to be with the team today; Murphy is headed to Oklahoma and Harrison to Double A Frisco. The other four minor leaguers are going to four teams.So, who's closing?With Akinori Otsuka on the DL, the Rangers will rely on a committee headed by Joaquin Benoit and Frank Francisco.WHO THE RANGERS GOTKason Gabbard, LHPGabbard, 25, started the season with Triple A Pawtucket and went 7-2 with a 3.24 ERA. Three of his past four outings for Boston have been quality starts, including a three-hit shutout of Kansas City on July 16. In 2006, he was 1-3 with a 3.51 ERA for Boston. Gabbard, drafted in 2000, had left elbow surgery in 2003.David Murphy, OFMurphy, 25, will head to Triple A Oklahoma. He has spent most of the season with Pawtucket, where he hit .280 with nine homers and 47 RBI. He was the Red Sox's 15th-ranked prospect, according toBaseball America. Murphy played at Baylor and was a first-round pick in 2003 after an All-America junior season.Engel Beltre, OFThe 18-year-old Dominican is one of the youngest players in the minors. ESPN rated him No. 2 of the available players in the international free-agent signing period last summer. He played in 34 rookie league games, hitting .208 with 11 extra-base hits and 13 RBI. He's headed to the Rangers'rookie league team.
Notes: Gagne, Otsuka targeted: Eric Gagne has heard the rumors. Akinori Otsuka seemed surprised when the subject was brought up. The simple fact is the Rangers are getting hit up by a number of teams in baseball for available relief pitching.
Rangers find a new way to lose a game: ARLINGTON -- The Rangers haven't had much that could be mistaken for perfection this season, but setup man Akinori Otsuka and closer Eric Gagné were as close as they got -- until Sunday.
Ramirez goes 4-for-4, BoSox beat Rangers (AP):
As if the Boston Red Sox didn't have enough going for them. The team with the best record in baseball now has surging Manny Ramirez on their side. Ramirez had four hits and keyed a five-run sixth inning with an RBI triple to help the Boston Red Sox beat the Texas Rangers 7-4 Saturday night. Ramirez is 8-for-12 in his past three games and his batting average has improved 84 points in May to .272.
Rangers outlast Jays in wild one: Hank Blalock atoned for an earlier error with a sacrifice fly in the 10th inning to lift the Texas Rangers to a 9-8 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday.Michael Young hit a one-out double in the 10th and stole third. Mark Teixeira walked and Sammy Sosa was given a free pass from Brian Tallet (0-1) before Blalock flied out to the warning track in center to drive in Young. Akinori Otsuka (1-0) got the win despite giving up the tying run in the ninth.
Gagne, Otsuka ready to anchor 'pen: While a strong year from Eric Gagne would go a long way toward helping the Rangers' playoff hopes, they will equally rely on Akinori Otsuka. The relievers are taking different approaches this spring, but they have the same goal: an AL West title.
Rangers a hit with fans at FanFest: Rangers general manager Jon Daniels missed the Rangers Sluggers of the West Dinner, but for good reason. His wife, Robyn, was giving birth to the couple's first child. Akinori Otsuka did make it, flying in from Japan to accept his Pitcher of the Year Award.
Akinori Otsuka in the Blog PenJim Gerard: July 3, 2008 - DFA, chapter 31: Enter Letty:
: April 3, 2008 - DFA, chapter 20: Viva La Revolucion!:
Jim Gerard: March 17, 2008 - DFA, chapter 18 -The Creative Process:
: March 12, 2008 - My Transaction History, part 2:
John Shiffert: June 27, 2007 - The Winless Pitcher Syndrome:
Peter Doyle: June 26, 2007 - Roger Clemens, The Best Righty?:
Richard Lally: June 18, 2007 - Richard Lally Spends Five Minutes With...Eddie Joost:
Peter Doyle: May 30, 2007 - Those Who Ignore History...:
: May 29, 2007 - :
: May 7, 2007 - : THE NATURAL, AFTER ALL THESE YEARS