Moreland replaces Davis on roster after debut

Moreland replaces Davis on roster after debut

ARLINGTON -- Rangers first baseman Mitch Moreland made his Major League debut Thursday night in a 7-3 win over the A's -- and did enough to keep his spot on the roster.

After going 2-for-4 with two singles, the Rangers opted to send first baseman Chris Davis back to Triple-A Oklahoma City.

He may remain there until second baseman Ian Kinsler comes off the disabled list. The Rangers may try the recently-acquired Jorge Cantu in his place until he can return. After that, Moreland will likely serve in a platoon with the right-handed hitter.

"It was pretty nerve-racking," Moreland said. "I was just trying to go up there and relax a little bit. After those first couple pitches, and seeing them, it really helped me out."

Manager Ron Washington said liked what he saw out of his rookie.

"We know what the kid is capable of doing. He's not scared," Washington said. "And as long as he's not scared, we'll be all right."

Added outfielder David Murphy: "It's good when we're going one through nine. Mitch is here for a reason. He's a great hitter, has a great approach and he showed that tonight."

Moreland had seven friends and family members in attendance, including both of his parents and his girlfriend.

"It's the best feeling in the world. You dream of this as a kid growing up," Moreland said before the game. "Since I could walk, this is what I wanted to do. I've been fortunate enough to get the opportunity and get this chance to play the game I love."

Moreland, who hit .289 with 12 home runs and 65 RBIs for Oklahoma City, is a player that Washington likes.

"He swung the bat well down there, plays good defense. He's a player," Washington said. "When we decided what we had to do when we knew we weren't going to have Kinsler, we went down there and got the best player in the infield. It just happened to be Moreland."

And that's part of the reason Washington quickly inserted him into the lineup. Moreland, who first heard the news from Triple-A manager Bobby Jones, said he's happy to be here -- no matter how long or short his stay may be.

"I don't know if it's even sunk in yet," Moreland said. "I felt like I was smiling all the way down here driving. It's a dream come true and I'm going to take it in as best I can."

And after Moreland finished his night, he was doused in the face with the customary shaving cream.

"It was the best tasting shaving cream I've ever had," Moreland said with a laugh.