Josh Hamilton blames his blue eyes
Texas Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton has been notoriously bad as a hitter during day games. Well, apparently we now have the reason as to why he struggles. He told the Rangers’ Radio Network that having blue eyes makes it harder to see during the day. He has bought sunglasses to try and remedy the situation, but it seems the damage is already done with the Ranger fans. Most calling him out for just being plain bad and others wanting Hamilton to stop with the excuses. Whatever the reasons might be, Hamilton is hitting an abysmal .122 during day games this season without a single home run.
Rangers scouting New York Mets closer?
With the New York Mets coming to town, the Rangers will get a first-hand look at young reliever Francisco Rodriguez, a guy some think the team could look at as a trade option at the deadline next month. While he is one of the options I talked about yesterday, his recent struggles might keep him as a third or even fourth option if the other names the Rangers are after fall through. Rodriguez has blown two of his last three saves and has given up eight earned runs in his last 10 innings pitched. He’s not the same guy who set the baseball world on fire with the then Anaheim Angels. The problem with K-Rod could have been told in an SI.com piece three years ago that talked about his inability to command his fastball. A reliever like Rodriguez tends to try to throw a mid-90s fastball by Major League hitters but without command of that pitch, it’s going to look like nothing but batting practice. While he may not be their first option, the Rangers will still be looking carefully at the young reliever and how he handles himself in one of the biggest hitters parks in baseball.
What to do with Neftali Feliz?
With the Rangers looking to bolster their bullpen the question it will bring up with most fans and media alike is what will the team do with their current closer, Neftali Feliz. If you bring in a guy like Heath Bell, it will mean the end of Feliz’s closing days. You can’t bring in a proven closer and a guy who has all the confidence in the world, and only allow him the set up roll. There’s no question demoting Feliz might bruise his confidence a little bit, maybe he needs to learn from a real professional and how he goes about his business as a shut down closer. Maybe he can learn from a guy like Bell on how to prepare himself both mentally and physically before he comes trotting out for the ninth inning.
As for next season, the Rangers had attempted to look at him as a starter, but he didn’t have the command or the pitches to be effective. But if Ogando can come out of the bullpen, become a starter and be effective, there’s no reason Feliz can’t do it as well.
If he continues to struggle in the back end of the bullpen, it gives manager Ron Washington even less confidence to keep giving him the ball with the game on the line.
Rangers interested in Brett Myers?
Not only are the Texas Rangers looking to bring in a name or two to solidify their bullpen, they’re also looking at bringing in a proven starter to add to their rotation. Young left-handers Matt Harrison and Derek Holland have struggled, and some wonder if these two pitchers can continue to be trusted in the rotation down the stretch. Maybe one or both would be better off helping the team out of the bullpen? Holland has that experience and has proven to be a solid reliever with exception to his problems during the playoffs. Pitching one inning is a lot different than trying to go five, six or seven innings and anywhere from 90 to 100 pitches.
One of the names that has surfaced is Houston Astros right hander, Brett Myers. He was a name a lot of teams were interested in after a 14-8 record and a 3.14 ERA with the Astros last season. However, Myers has not had the same kind of success in 2011. In 16 starts, Myers is 3-6 with a 4.65 ERA and has given up two or more runs in each of his last four starts, including giving up five runs over six innings against the St. Louis Cardinals back on June 7.
He definitely brings a veteran presence to the rotation, and he’s a guy who can take the ball every fifth day and will battle from start to finish. He’s not a guy who will be on and off the disabled list throughout the season, and he’s someone who could be a solid No. 2 starter behind C.J. Wilson and in front of Alexi Ogando. The way Colby Lewis is throwing right now, and with Tommy Hunter due back, you’d have a solid rotation from top to bottom.