As I have said here many times, in 2008 on my way up to Iowa to see the Lumberkings I asked personal favorite Andrew Laughter who I had to make sure I see on the Lumberkings. The 2 names he mentioned without pause were Derek Holland and Mitch Moreland. On a team that was stacked with talent (Blake Beavan, Neftali Feliz, Cristian Santana and Fabio Castillo to name a few) that was quite a compliment. It's a year and a half later and Derek already has spent a year in the big leagues while Mitch is opening eyes in big league camp after being named the minor league position player of the year. Don't doubt Andrew!
What made me think of this you ask? TR Sullivan's article on the apparent offensive power house that will be the RedHawks this year. Pretty much all of the names that are in the article are names Jeff and I guessed last week, but it is interesting that Chad Tracy appears to be definitely slated to be a RedHawk.
Lots of good news from today's Rangers/Royals game. The Rangers lost, which always puts me in a good mood. Even better, personal favorite Josh Rupe picked up the save, giving up 1 hit while striking out 4 over the last 2 innings. Speaking of favorites, Tommy Hunter started and gave up a hit and a run while striking out 2 and Kasey Kiker threw a perfect 8th.
A couple of my favorite ex-Hawks have signed or are negotiating deals. Wes Littleton signed with the Mariners while Travis Metcalf inked a deal with Colorado. Hank Blalock has reportedly received minor league offers from the Rays and the Marlins. Two of my favorite ex- PCLers, John Van Benschoten and Dustin Moseley signed with the MFYs.
I'm starting to think Jeff may be right about Derek Holland starting the year in OKC. The first 4 spots in Texas' rotation are pretty much going to Rich Harden, Scott Feldman, Colby Lewis and Tommy Hunter, leaving Derek, Matt Harrison and Brandon McCarthy battling it out for the #5 spot. Harrison and McCarthy have reportedly been the most impressive pitchers this spring while Derek has been slowed by a sprained knee. Last week Evan Grant predicted that McCarthy would land the 5th spot while Derek and Harrison start in OKC. I also wonder if Tanner Scheppers doesn't find his way on to the OKC roster.
Julio Borbon was scratched from his start today with forearm soreness after injuring himself diving after a ball. It doesn't sound serious.
My friend Sharon used to love to read the "getting to know" articles that I found about the players during spring training, so in her honor, here are: Matt Brown, David Murphy, Cloby Lewis (yes, that is intentional!), Doug Mathis, and Chris Davis.