Gallo leads five Rangers prospects on Top 100 list

Slugging third baseman joined by Alfaro, Mazara, Thompson and Gonzalez

Gallo leads five Rangers prospects on Top 100 list

ARLINGTON -- Led by power-hitting third baseman Joey Gallo, the Rangers have five players listed in MLB.com's Top 100 Prospects as revealed on MLB Network on Friday night.

Gallo is ranked the highest of the Rangers' prospects at No. 9. Texas is tied for the fourth-most prospects on the list, with catcher Jorge Alfaro, outfielder Nomar Mazara and pitchers Jake Thompson and Alex Gonzalez also making the list.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Scheppers working toward major role in bullpen

Rangers looking for right-hander to seize setup job after injury-plagued 2014

Scheppers working toward major role in bullpen

GARLAND, Texas -- Rangers reliever Tanner Scheppers took a significant step on Wednesday by throwing off the mound in the bullpen for the first time this offseason.

"It went good," Scheppers said. "Everything has been feeling good. I feel healthy, I'm excited for the year."

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers' new rotation gives prospects more time

Right-hander Gonzalez will likely get experience in Triple-A before jumping to Majors

Rangers' new rotation gives prospects more time

ARLINGTON -- Alex Gonzalez, the Rangers' top Draft pick in 2013 and their No. 5 prospect according to MLB.com, is coming to his first Major League Spring Training next month. The Rangers' work in rebuilding their rotation this winter means they might be able to keep their hands off him at the end of camp.

By re-signing Colby Lewis and trading for Yovani Gallardo, Ross Detwiler and Anthony Ranaudo, the Rangers have put themselves in position to let Gonzalez and other young starters continue their development in the Minor Leagues rather than being pushed to the big leagues prematurely.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers acquire Ranaudo from Red Sox for Ross

Right-hander gives Texas another option for back end of rotation

Rangers acquire Ranaudo from Red Sox for Ross

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers added another strong candidate to their rotation competition by acquiring rookie right-handed pitcher Anthony Ranaudo from the Red Sox on Tuesday.

Texas did so by dealing from the one area of its pitching staff it was most concerned about by sending left-handed reliever Robbie Ross Jr. to the Red Sox. Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said they weren't looking to trade Ross, but they couldn't pass up the opportunity to acquire another quality starting pitching prospect.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Harrison hopes to follow path paved by fellow Ranger

Pitcher attempting to return after undergoing untested surgery like Lewis

Harrison hopes to follow path paved by fellow Ranger

ARLINGTON -- Rangers pitcher Matt Harrison has a potential guide to help lead him in his recovery from an untested back operation.

Fellow pitcher Colby Lewis was able to overcome daunting odds in returning to the Rangers' rotation last season after missing 18 months because of flexor tendon and hip operations. The hip replacement surgery was the procedure that had people wondering if Lewis would be able to pitch again.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Offseason spent in Texas agrees with Darvish

Rangers righty says strength program going well, elbow feels fine

Offseason spent in Texas agrees with Darvish

ARLINGTON -- This has been a winter of content for Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish, who has spent most of it in Texas working out at the Ballpark.

Darvish has a new girlfriend. In November he tweeted to his 1.24 million followers that he was dating Seiko Yamamoto, a four-time world wrestling champion.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Daniels, Rangers focused on adding bullpen depth

Texas GM seeks left- and right-handed relievers following Ohlendorf signing

Daniels, Rangers focused on adding bullpen depth

ARLINGTON -- Bullpen depth is the Rangers' main focus going into the final weeks of the offseason. General manager Jon Daniels said at FanFest on Saturday that Texas is still looking for relievers before going into Spring Training.

Daniels said the Rangers are looking for both right- and left-handed relievers, but he acknowledged they are a little short on the left side with only Robbie Ross, Alex Claudio and Michael Kirkman coming to camp at this point.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Fielder healthy, 'ready to go' for Rangers

Fielder healthy, 'ready to go' for Rangers

DALLAS -- Rangers first baseman Prince Fielder, making a rare offseason appearance at the team's award dinner, said he is 100 percent healthy.

"I'll play a pickup game right now, I'm ready to go," Fielder said Friday night.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers avoid arbitration with Moreland

Ohlendorf signed to Minors deal with Spring Training invite

Rangers avoid arbitration with Moreland

DALLAS -- First baseman Mitch Moreland, who missed most of last season with an ankle injury that required surgery, has avoided an arbitration hearing. That was among the news items released by the Rangers at their awards banquet on Friday night.

Moreland, the Rangers' last unsigned arbitration-eligible player, agreed to a one-year, $2.95 million contract. The Rangers haven't had an arbitration hearing with a player since 2000.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Helling remembered for showing heart with Rangers

Gritty work ethic trumped physical ability for former Texas righty

Helling remembered for showing heart with Rangers

ARLINGTON -- Facing a team that won 114 games in the regular season, Rick Helling threw 119 pitches in an American League Division Series start for the Rangers against the Yankees in 1998. Helling allowed three runs in six innings, walked one and struck out nine.

Looking back 17 years later, Helling estimated that 90 percent of his pitches that night were fastballs. Few, if any, registered higher than 90 mph on the radar gun, but the great Yankees lineup still had trouble catching up to the pitches being called by catcher Ivan Rodriguez on a cool evening in the Bronx.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Jim Callis

Alfaro No. 2 on MLB Pipeline's Top 10 C Prospects list

Red Sox's Swihart sits atop list, followed by Rangers' Alfaro and Cubs' Schwarber

Alfaro No. 2 on MLB Pipeline's Top 10 C Prospects list

MLBPipeline.com's 2015 Top 100 Prospects list will be unveiled on Friday, Jan. 30, on MLB.com, with the Top 50 revealed during a one-hour show on MLB Network at 9 p.m. ET. Leading up to that, MLBPipeline.com takes a look at baseball's Top 10 prospects at each position.

Though only one catcher (Blake Swihart of the Red Sox) fits in the top 40 spots on MLBPipeline.com's upcoming 2015 Top 100 Prospects list, talent behind the plate actually runs deep. The Minors are teeming with backstops who have the tools to contribute offensively and defensively in the big leagues in the near future. This list could see a lot of turnover a year from now, as Christian Bethancourt figures to be the Braves' starter and Swihart, Kevin Plawecki (Mets) and J.T. Realmuto (Marlins) could be playing regularly in the Majors by season's end.

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Jim Callis is a reporter for MLB.com and writes a blog, Callis' Corner. Follow @jimcallisMLB on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Return home a dream come true for Gallardo

Return home a dream come true for Gallardo

ARLINGTON -- Yovani Gallardo finally made it to Globe Life Park in Arlington on Wednesday for the mini-camp being held for Rangers pitchers this week. All he did was play catch, but it might have been his most significant moment there since a pre-Draft workout with the Rangers in 2004 when he was still at Trimble Tech High School in Fort Worth, Texas.

"I've always wanted to play here," Gallardo said at an introductory news conference after the workout. "Obviously, when the trade rumors started over the weekend, I just took it as a rumor and didn't really think it was going to happen.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Detwiler ready to compete for fifth-starter spot

Tepesch, Martinez and Bonilla vying for job at end of Rangers' rotation

Detwiler ready to compete for fifth-starter spot

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers are going to give Ross Detwiler a chance to start in Spring Training. Detwiler, who was acquired from the Nationals in December, knows that he still has to win a job.

"Throughout my career I have had to win a job in Spring Training," Detwiler said after a workout at Globe Life Park on Wednesday. "Nothing is for sure. If I come in and throw well, I'll earn the job. If I don't throw well, I don't deserve the job. Nothing is going to be handed to me."

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers acquire Corporan in trade with Astros

Rangers acquire Corporan in trade with Astros

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers believe they have solved their catching situation by acquiring Carlos Corporan from the Astros on Wednesday.

Corporan is a switch-hitter who will share the duties with Robinson Chirinos. The Rangers have been looking for a second catcher since the offseason began and focused on Corporan after the Astros acquired Evan Gattis last week.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bullpen a target after Rangers fortify rotation

GM Daniels sees left-side depth as area club wants to improve before spring

Bullpen a target after Rangers fortify rotation

ARLINGTON -- Having addressed their starting rotation with the addition of Yovani Gallardo, Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said the next step would be adding more bullpen help before Spring Training.

Daniels said he was particularly concerned about the left side of the bullpen, and left-hander Neal Cotts, who filled that role for the Rangers the past two seasons, remains unsigned.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Out to bolster rotation, Rangers land Brewers ace Gallardo

Texas sends three players to Milwaukee in trade

Out to bolster rotation, Rangers land Brewers ace Gallardo

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers added the impact starting they were looking for when they acquired right-hander Yovani Gallardo from the Brewers on Monday.

Gallardo, who played high school baseball at Trimble Tech in Fort Worth, joins Yu Darvish and Derek Holland as three pitchers at the top of the rotation who could each give the Rangers 200 innings. Colby Lewis could be a fourth if he continues to show he is fully recovered from hip and flexor tendon surgeries.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers acquire homer threat Yovani Gallardo

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Rangers acquire homer threat Yovani Gallardo

With the Rangers looking to return to the playoffs after an injury-ravaged 2014, the team acquired pitcher Yovani Gallardo and cold, hard cash on Monday in exchange for infielder Luis Sardinas and right-handed pitchers Corey Knebel and Marcos Diplan.

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MLB.com Columnist

Tracy Ringolsby

Gallardo deal a smart move by Rangers

Age, contract status are enticing factors in adding to Texas rotation

Gallardo deal a smart move by Rangers

There would have been more sizzle for the Rangers to open up the checkbook and sign James Shields, the last remaining big-name free-agent pitcher in this offseason's marketplace. The headlines would have been bigger if they packaged a group of prime prospects to acquire Phillies left-hander Cole Hamels and the four years and $96 million remaining on his contract.

The Rangers, however, aren't looking to win offseason accolades from the media and fans. They are looking for another American League West title, a trip back to the World Series, and if their whole wish list is met, a World Series championship for the first time in what will be their 55th season of existence.

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Tracy Ringolsby is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers, Detwiler avoid arbitration with 1-year deal

Rangers, Detwiler avoid arbitration with 1-year deal

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers avoided an arbitration hearing with pitcher Ross Detwiler by agreeing to a one-year, $3.45 million contract on Friday. First baseman Mitch Moreland is the Rangers' only remaining potential arbitration case.

The two sides are $600,000 apart on Moreland. He is requesting $3.35 million from arbitration, while the Rangers are offering $2.75 million. Moreland made $2.65 million last season when he played in just 52 games and hit .246 with two home runs and 23 RBIs. He missed the final four months of the season because of surgery on his left ankle.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gallardo excited to come home and pitch for Rangers

Club hasn't broached subject of long-term extension with Fort Worth native

Gallardo excited to come home and pitch for Rangers

ARLINGTON -- Yovani Gallardo, who is from Fort Worth and still lives in the area, said he is "excited" to be pitching for the Rangers. He said it "means a lot" to be traded by the Brewers to the Rangers on Monday.

But Gallardo wasn't ready to discuss the possibility that his homecoming might only be for one year. Gallardo, who was acquired for three players, can be a free agent after this coming season.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Daniels: Club not involved with top free agents, Hamels

Rangers GM reiterates position to limit spending, hold on to prospects

Daniels: Club not involved with top free agents, Hamels

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers would like to add a starting pitcher before the end of the offseason, but they say they are not going to sign a big-name free agent and they are not likely to acquire Phillies left-hander Cole Hamels.

Texas has been linked to Hamels as a possible trade partner with the Phillies. But a Major League source said that as much as the Rangers like Hamels, they simply can't afford him. The Rangers are also not eager to part with their top Minor League prospects, as they were unwilling to give up pitcher Alex Gonzalez in any deal involving the Braves and Evan Gattis earlier this week.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers skipper Banister spends birthday on Caravan

Rangers skipper Banister spends birthday on Caravan

ARLINGTON -- Rangers manager Jeff Banister celebrated his 51st birthday on Thursday. Banister did so in the greater Austin area, where the Rangers were making two stops on their Winter Caravan.

Banister, who was hired on Oct. 16, will make his debut as a manager on April 6, when the Rangers open the season against the Athletics in Oakland. When he does, he will be the 21st manager -- full-time or interim -- in Rangers history.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

NFL playoff QBs have baseball connections

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NFL playoff QBs have baseball connections

If you're anything like me, when you tune into the NFL playoffs, you'll be thinking about one thing: How good would these quarterbacks be at baseball? As it turns out, we're not the only ones. One of the final four QBs standing was at one time described as a "sure thing as a baseball player" and another could throw a 91-mph heater. Let's see if you can match the baseball career to the player. 

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Rangers, Feliz avoid arbitration with 1-year deal

Rangers, Feliz avoid arbitration with 1-year deal

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers avoided an arbitration hearing with pitcher Neftali Feliz by agreeing to a one-year, $4,125,000 contract on Thursday.

The Rangers still have two arbitration cases pending, with first baseman Mitch Moreland and pitcher Ross Detwiler. On Friday, clubs are scheduled to exchange arbitration figures with their players and hearings will be held in February. The Rangers haven't gone to an arbitration hearing with a player since 2000 and expect to avoid one with Detwiler and Moreland.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers' individual game tickets on sale Feb. 28

Opening Day tickets will be sold through online opportunity

Rangers' individual game tickets on sale Feb. 28

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers announced on Wednesday that individual game tickets -- except for Opening Day -- will go on sale at 9 a.m. CT on Saturday, Feb. 28. Tickets will be available at texasrangers.com and at the ticket office at Globe Life Park.

In addition, fans attending FanFest on Jan. 24 will have an exclusive opportunity to purchase tickets for all games except Opening Day. Tickets for FanFest are now on sale at texasrangers.com/fanfest. Tickets for FanFest can also be purchased on the day of the event beginning at 7 a.m. at the first-base ticket office.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers angling to solve backup catcher spot

Club looking to add depth with Chirinos the clear-cut No. 1

Rangers angling to solve backup catcher spot

ARLINGTON -- Robinson Chirinos said he is training to start 150 games at catcher this season. At this point, that could be a distinct possibility.

The question is what will the Rangers do if something happens to Chirinos and he can't start at all. The club's need for a second catcher has been there since the end of last season.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers add power bat Peguero on Minors deal

Rangers add power bat Peguero on Minors deal

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers added an intriguing power bat to their Spring Training roster when they signed outfielder Carlos Peguero to a Minor League contract with an invitation to big league camp.

Peguero, 27, is a left-handed hitter who has had some impressive offensive seasons in the Minor Leagues but has not been able to carry that over into the Major Leagues. He was once considered a top offensive prospect in the Mariners' system.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

North Texas ready to focus on Rangers baseball

North Texas ready to focus on Rangers baseball

ARLINGTON -- Football season is coming to a close in North Texas. Certainly it has been a memorable one, with the Cowboys winning the NFC East, TCU and Baylor sharing the Big 12 title, the national college championship game being played in Arlington on Monday night and local high schools Allen, Cedar Hills, Aledo and Ennis winning state titles.

 Now it is time for the real countdown to baseball and Spring Training. As of Monday morning, there were 40 days left until Rangers pitchers and catchers report to Surprise, Ariz., on Feb. 20, with the first workout the following day.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rangers seek bullpen boost from veteran Oviedo

Reliever shows return of velocity in winter ball

Rangers seek bullpen boost from veteran Oviedo

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers acquired a veteran closer that not many people had heard of when they signed right-hander Juan Carlos Oviedo to a Minor League contract earlier this week. That's because he was known as Leo Nunez while he was recording 92 saves for the Marlins from 2009-11.

Those three years were the high point of his career. The last three have been difficult while dealing with a suspension for admitting to falsifying his identity at the time he was originally signed by the Pirates in 2000, as well as missing a year while recovering from Tommy John surgery.

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.