Tuesday, November 22, 2005


Good Morning to Texas. You still have no pitching. Back to the drawing board after the Red Sox swooped in and grabbed Josh Beckett. Is it better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all?

Revo gives A for Effort

Yes, sadly, the Rangers came up short Monday in their effort to land Josh Beckett from the Florida Marlins, who rather stupidly elected to take a lesser deal from the Boston Red Sox because the Marlins didn't want to pick up even Hank Blalock's modest contract.

Disappointment at the corner of Ballpark Way and Randol Mill was palpable, and it should be.

This was the kind of deal the Rangers have been needing to make for years, perhaps even a once-in-a-decade-or-two opportunity. That it fell through left new general manager Jon Daniels almost literally sick to his stomach.

But for those of us who have been begging the Rangers to become more aggressive in acquiring pitching on the trade market, even this failed effort signaled that there's a new sheriff in town, and he's pulling no punches.

"This was a tough negotiation that we played strong in from the beginning," Daniels said in a conference call late Monday afternoon to announce that the Marlins were going in another direction. "Our goal from Day 1 was to do whatever it takes to obtain a No. 1 pitcher.

"That was our No. 1 priority, and it still is."

Makes you feel like standing and cheering, doesn't it? Imagine how we'll feel if the Rangers manage to actually land a decent pitcher someday.

Evan Grant on Daniels losing out on first stare-down

"The longer it went, after we were willing to meet their asking price, the more we thought another club would be involved," he said. "I don't think I was surprised when I heard from them."

Daniels downplayed the possibility that the Marlins might have made the deal if the Rangers had included the pitching prospect earlier in the process. This would have been Daniels' first deal as Rangers GM. He took over in October for John Hart.

"You can certainly play the 'what if' game and the decision-making process, I'll look back on," Daniels said. "But I think it was clear that the Marlins were looking to maximize their gain in exchange for two very good players."

T.R. Sullivan

Jiri Fischer collapses during game

Everything stopped in Joe Louis Arena on a surreal Monday night, the night Jiri Fischer's heart stopped. The Red Wings' defenseman was in stable condition later Monday at Detroit Receiving Hospital. Team officials said he was awake, responsive and in good spirits while greeting teammates, as he recovered from what was called a seizure.

There was no more hockey on this night, surely one of the scariest in NHL history, absolutely the scariest night the Wings could ever remember. The Detroit-Nashville game was stopped in the first period, to be resumed later, a decision that didn't even need to be debated. All involved needed time to compose themselves, and figure out what they saw.

Jiri Fischer video …Very concerning…

Texas with furious comeback beats West Virginia

We all know Dallas has the best resume of any NFL team since the birth of the Super Bowl, right? Here is a few “I’ll be darned” items in the wrong direction.

During Sunday’s Cowboys-Lions pregame show, Mickey Spagnola suggested that the Lions had just one playoff win since 1957. That reminded me of the one win they had, when they steamrolled the very young, very talented, but not ready-for-primetime Dallas Cowboys in 1991 in the Silverdome, 38-6. The Lions are 1-9 in the playoffs since the 1960, with their one win being against maybe the greatest group of players in this NFL generation.

What other team holds that odd distinction of stinking, and yet rising up once against the Boys?

That’s right Cardinals fans. The Arizona Cardinals (formerly of St Louis and Chicago) have exactly one playoff win since 1947: Texas Stadium in 1998.

Honorable mention: Carolina Panthers, who once had only 2 playoff wins – both against America’s team. Of course, they now have 4 (Rams and Eagles, too).

What says vintage cold weather football like not running the ball and not stopping the run? Packers lose AGAIN

Thus, the Vikings swept Green Bay for the first time since 1998 and improved to 5-5, still within hailing distance of NFC North Division leader Chicago (7-3).

The Packers saw whatever dim hopes they might have had to claim the division title for the fourth straight year all but extinguished.

As it stands now, the Packers are one of four National Football League teams mired at 2-8. Houston is the only team worse at 1-9.

Limited to 48 yards rushing at halftime, the Vikings pounded away for 112 in the second half to finish with 160.

Meanwhile, the Packers had to settle for 21 yards on the ground as neither Samkon Gado nor Tony Fisher found any room to operate behind an offensive line that was clearly whipped at the point of attack by the Vikings' stout front seven.

meet Edward G. Hochuli

Rockets here tonight …I must tell you, there slow start is surely a surprise. Especially when everyone assured me they were going to be better than the Mavericks. It is still early, but they look like they have no guards again…Who thought Bob Sura was so valuable?

But as the Rockets return to American Airlines Center tonight for the first time since they were whipped more thoroughly than any team has ever been whipped in Game 7 of a playoff series, they face more than the rolling Mavericks.

Staggering since the 116-76 drubbing, the Rockets bring the worst record in the Western Conference to Dallas as the worst-scoring team in the NBA.

And there are indications that a shakeup might be needed.

With no backcourt player making better than 40 percent of his shots, the Rockets have begun to wonder whether their time has come and gone.

Mike Bascik turned in these +/- numbers for Game 4:

Game 4 Loss Mavs vs. 76ers

Terry +13, Christie -9, Howard -14, Nowitzki +9, Dampier + 5
Daniels -16, Van Horn -24, Harris -16, Diop -16, Armstrong -7

I would type some thoughts about UFC 56, but I would rather just show you.

I give it a very solid review. I don’t want my $35 back.

And, finally this email:

What next for the Rangers? I hear they may hold a wednesday press conference naming Hank Blalock as their captain. --Mike B.


Anonymous said...

"Good Morning to Texas. You still have no pitching."

Better pitching than your quarterback! And yes, I'm bitter...

AttnyDan said...

How many times are the Ranger fans going to fall for this BULL$%!+

Team management is like a little bity ant frantically crawling around during the offseason, but getting nothing done.

Listening to Norm on possible free agent pitchers that Texas might pick up is such a beating because I for one, will NOT be fooled anymore. Texas, your rotation is, what it is as of the end of last year I'm afraid.

Jared in Irving said...

All Genero casual Ranger fans need to just relax. Florida took a lesser deal because A. they did not need a 3B, and B. they did not want to take back any salary.

They were just going to flip Blalock for prospects, so instead they took a very good prospect at a position of need for them. It sucks, but when you have the best deal on the table and you lose, what can you really do?

It sucks, but you can't blame management for this one.

Anonymous said...

I'm not so sure. If they wouldn't have balked at giving up Danks for 24-48 hours, they might have gotten this deal done before Boston swooped in. That stall was all the time Boston needed even though they have no GM.

And don't be fooled. Tom Hicks was the one behind this deal and doing the negotiating, not Daniels. It was Hicks and the Marlins owner that brokered the entire thing. And of course it was Hicks' initial balking on including Danks that probably ended up killing it.

Brandon at GSR said...

I heard George and Craig bag on Hochuli yesterday.

And I have to ask why?

Every NFL ref should aspire to his level of communication with the fans. His explanations on overturned or upheld plays via challenges are a hell of a lot better than the vanilla 'After further review, the play stands' explanation that the majority of other NFL refs offer.

I know Kevin Weiberg could learn a thing or two from Ed with his 'we don't publically comment about officials' calls' BS policy.

big smooth said...

i'm very disappointed that this didn't happen. this is a guy that would have changed the face of this franchise. while i'm glad that the rangers are involved in these discussions, the more i think about it, this trade needed to be done b/c it's impossible for this team to draw in free agents due to the launching pad the rangers play in. prospects can come back to bite you in the ass if you trade them and they become stars, but this was for a 25 year old ace, the type of guy this franchise rarely gets the opportunity to get.

and it just makes me sick that he's going to boston. i'm getting sick of the freaking yankees and red sox acquiring whoever the hell they want. the rich are still getting richer and the rangers continue to suck....

i'm right there with greggo on this one.....

Jared in Irving said...

Anonymous, you might want to do some fact checking before posting.

Daniels and the Marlin GM began the framework on this deal over a month ago. They set up the pieces, and the past few days it had gone to the owners because it began to involve money, who would take on what, etc.

Hick did not borker this deal from the beginning. That's just not true.

And do you really, really think if we'd agreed to include Danks on Sat, Florida would've just said "sweet, ok. we don't need to check with anyone else" Gimme a break. They probably went into this wanting Hanley Ramirez the entire time. It's not like we balked and then Boston came in with a better offer. In the end, we agreed to what Florida was supposedly asking, and they still went with a lesser package.

In my opinion they got who they targeted from the beginning.

big smooth said...


well do you not think they gave the rangers a chance to counter with a better deal. the rangers should have upped the offer b/c this is a guy they needed to get.

Jared in Irving said...

How much do you want to go up? You're already paying more than market value. Want to throw in Arias too? Hell why not Diamond as well?

Look I really, really wanted Becket. But you can't kill your farm system for one guy, unless that one guy is a SURE thing. And Becket simply is not. He has HUGE potential, but he's no sure thing. I was willing to overpay, but I was NOT willing to get run roughshod over. We had a fair, hell, better offer on the table. They chose not to take it. Move on.

BTW, I've seen people claim Beckett would have "changed the face of the Rangers." Let's tap the breaks there. The guy has a road ERA over 4.00 in the National League. He has great stuff, but don't think for a second he would have come in here and posted a sub 3.00 ERA and won the Cy Young. He would have been a solid #1 for us, but he is NOT Jake Peavy or Roy Oswalt.

big smooth said...

I agree that there is a limit where you have to stop and that he isn't a sure thing, but neither are any of the prospects we have. I'm sure daniels gave it his best shot, but they're gonna have to start hitting on trade opportunities like this before we lose the good parts we do have so that hicks can turn a profit. he's the best guy that was available. i'm just frustrated b/c this is another in a long list of misses for the rangers.

Jared in Irving said...

If you want to be somewhat uplifted as a Ranger fan, go read Jim Reev's column in the FWST telegram today. Bob has it linked up above.

That readin made me feel somewhat better, because he accurately points out that this should end up being a sign of things to come with Daniels. If Hart's our GM, this was never even discuseed, because he just doesn't operate this way. Daniels is being creative and aggressive, and is honest about his desire to get better pitching.

It's a great read.

Anonymous said...

Beckett may not be the greatest thing ever, but all I know is the guy totally shut down the Yankees in the World Series two years ago. And the Rangers haven't had a pitcher around here that could do anything like that in over a decade at least.

Anonymous said...

This rich get richer line is bunch of bull. Hicks has the money to spend just like the sox and yanks. However he is a meiser and values profit over on the field success. The players the sox traded were all homegrown shrewd draft picks.

I cant stand people from Dallas and Houston bitching about big market teams. You think the stros didnt rake this year at the gate. are they going to reinvest nope.

I don't begrudge hicks the right to operate as he sees fit, but the rich get richer is a line of BS.

If anything the Loria-Henry-Selig croneyism should be talked about

big smooth said...


i'm not complaining about big market/small market, but over the last 5 years, the red sox and yankees get whoever the hell they want, and yes, those rich teams do seem to get richer each year. look at how much they spend. notice how they are in the playoffs every year? and now one of them just acquired the best pitcher that was available this year. therefore, the analogy does apply in this case.

texas is a big market team, and should be spending. the fact that they refuse to do so is one of the reasons they aren't winning. if we're paying more and more each year to watch the rangers, yet they don't spend on the team, i think we do have a right as fans to complain about how hicks operates the team.

cracker1743 said...

Has there been talk up there in Dallas about any "off the field" problems with Blalock? I thought he'd been at odds with the front office or somesuch, but the Sun-Sentinal is reporting that the Marlins were scared off by "off field" issues. WTF?

"Monday afternoon the Marlins informed the Rangers they were no longer in the Beckett sweepstakes. The Rangers, who were dangling two-time All-Star Hank Blalock and one of two minor league pitchers who were former first-round draft picks, the Marlins had off-field concerns about Blalock."


Anonymous said...

It's awfully funny how Dallas' NFL and NBA teams are considered "big market" by everyone, but the NHL and MLB teams aren't. Hmm, what do the NHL and MLB teams have in common ya think?

2 Cubicles Down said...

Big Smooth,
If its not a big market small market arguement, then the problem lies within your teams management. Yes the Yankees/Sox get whoever they want. I believe its because they can look a Free Agent in the face and say you will compete for a championship if you come here. Take Clement for example. He said he would come to Arlington however recieved no calls from the team.

I hope this will be rectified by Daniels.

The beckett trade is a perfect example of what a ripe farm system can do. You guys need to unload a few of them for something now.

We didnt even know Beckett was on the market. The red sox were also the only team to tell Burnett he would not get 5 years from them but they would listen on $$$. If you look at the makeup of the team from 04 and on its made up of alot of savvy decisions that didnt involve a lot of cash. Mueller bellhorn etc.
Look at the sports guy article today on ESPN.com. Very insightful, heres a clip

(Note: Isn't it weird how you can grow attached to these faceless baseball prospects that you don't really know anything about? When they brought up Papelbon last summer, I almost felt like he was part of my family. Jon Papelbon! I've been waiting for this day for years! I could be telling my grandkids about this some day! Of course, I said the exact same things about Kevin Morton 15 years ago. There isn't a stranger sport than baseball.)


Jay Clendenin said...

Giving the Rangers credit for "trying to get Beckett" is like giving A&M credit for "playing hard." And as an Aggie, I'm pissed that both teams' respective fans have been reduced to showering them with this kind of praise.

Brandon at GSR said...

Getting close to acquiring Josh Beckett is like showering with your sister.

It's no good.

Anonymous said...

I took a shower with your sister and it was awesome.

JeradB said...

10:30 AM and no blog..