As Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News discussed with host Jeff Todd on yesterday’s MLBTR podcast, the Rangers are likely to be tempted mostly by high-quality arms at the deadline. Corey Seidman of CSNPhilly.com opines that Texas may be the Phillies’ best match in terms of prospects. Seidman speculates that a package centering around Jorge Alfaro and Nomar Mazara — two names previously said by CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman to be of interest to Philadelphia — makes sense for Cole Hamels, as the Phillies are “desperate” to add a young catcher and would like an outfielder with some pop. Seidman wonders if including a rejuvenated Aaron Harang or paying a chunk of Jonathan Papelbon’s contract and including him, too, would entice the Rangers. Of course, all of this boils own to speculation at this juncture, but the Rangers do seem to be a fit given their somewhat unexpectedly strong start. Texas is 28-26 after a win last night, but their ranks 19th in ERA (4.24), 24th in FIP (4.36) and 28th in xFIP (4.51).
More from the AL West to kick off your Friday morning…
- The decision to designate Justin Ruggiano for assignment over Rickie Weeks was not an easy one for the Mariners, writes Bob Dutton of the Tacoma News Tribune. “The particulars are not something I want to discuss,” manager Lloyd McClendon told Dutton. “Hopefully, this gives (Ruggiano) a chance to catch on with somebody else. It was a very difficult decision.” As Dutton notes, there was going to be an extreme lack of playing time for whoever remained on the roster, following the acquisition of Mark Trumbo. Dutton also points out that McClendon frequently used Dustin Ackley and Willie Bloomquist as late defensive replacements, rather than Ruggiano, perhaps indicating that the Mariners weren’t particularly enamored with his defense.
- Dutton also spoke with Mark Trumbo, the man whose acquisition led to Ruggiano’s DFA. Trumbo said that the news he’d been traded “was a lot to take, initially,” but that when he found out he was headed to Seattle, his mind eased. “I couldn’t have been happier,” said Trumbo. “I’ve loved coming here when I was with the Angels. It’s one of my favorite places in the country — or the world, for that matter.” Trumbo went 2-for-4 with a pair of singles and started at first base in his Mariners debut.
- Astros GM Jeff Luhnow told Evan Drellich of the Houston Chronicle yesterday that he believes Brady Aiken has joined Jacob Nix in not consenting to allow the Astros to draft him again in 2015, as is his right after not signing in 2014. When a Twitter follower asked Drellich whether or not 21st-round pick Mac Marshall, who also did not sign, had done the same, Marshall himself replied on Twitter to say that he had “no hard feelings” toward Houston and has given his consent to be drafted by the Astros again in 2015.
- Josh Hamilton tells Grant that he’s only had a hamstring injury of this significance one other time in his career in 2007 when he put an extreme amount of effort into rehabbing as he first got back into the Majors following four years of drug-related suspensions. Hamilton likely pushed too hard in his rehab in an effort to get back on the field with the Rangers but says he does not regret how he went about his rehab. Grant reports that he has received a platelet rich plasma injection in the injured area that the team hopes will accelerate the healing process.