Texas Rangers – Notes From Surprise

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Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports


I don’t know about you, but I think impressing Texas Rangers pitching coach Mike Maddux would be an extremely difficult task.

Apparently, right-handed pitcher Keone Kela – a non-roster invitee – has already done exactly that. According to Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram (via Twitter) Maddux said of Kela’s pitching, “Freaking gas. The ball comes out hot, really hot” tweets Wilson. I can’t wait to see him in action this spring.

*The following quotes are via T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com*

Mike Maddux on right-handed closer Neftali Feliz – “Neftali looked sharp,” Maddux said. “I see a guy recommitted to why he was good and what he has to do to be good. He looks really good. His attitude is to take nothing for granted.”

MM on righty Shawn Tolleson – “Last year was kind of a rehab year,” Maddux said. “It was a rehab year and it was pretty good.”

Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

MM on RHP Kyuji Fujikawa – “The ball was coming out pretty good,” Maddux said. “Pretty clean … he repeated his delivery well. He showed no favoritism of any injury. He let it go.” Asked if he was back to where he was as a premier closer in Japan, Fujikawa said, “Very close. Last year was not close. This year it’s getting close.”

MM on RHP non-roster invitee Juan Carlos Oviedo – “For the first time out, he looked really good,” Maddux said.

Mike Maddux said Tanner Scheppers also looked “very good” reports Sullivan. But I’m especially happy about what manager Jeff Banister had to say about Scheppers’ role this season: 

This is exactly what I had said before last season began. Although I rooted for him to win the closer role, I knew Scheppers would shine the brightest as the Rangers setup man. I’m glad Banister will more than likely have Schepp in that position. Now, if we could just get another lefty in the bullpen I feel like the fans would be able to breathe a little easier.

What needs to happen this Spring to let you breathe a little easier going into the season?


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