Notes: Teixeira watch continues
Rangers try to go about their business as trade winds swirl
KANSAS CITY -- According to sources, the Rangers are talking to the Arizona Diamondbacks about first baseman Conor Jackson, outfielder Carlos Gonzalez and a pitching prospect for Mark Teixeira.The Atlanta Braves remain interested in Teixeira, but there are some health issues with Matt Harrison, the Double-A left-handed pitcher that would be part of the return package. Harrison has a strained shoulder and has been shut down. A Major League source said that does not kill the potential Braves deal, but complicates it.
The Boston Red Sox, New York Yankees and New York Mets are pushing hard for closer Eric Gagne. A source described the situation as "pretty warm."
The Red Sox are concerned about their setup relief and the Yankees are concerned about Mariano Rivera. Gagne can veto a trade with the Red Sox and insisted that nobody has talked to him about any deals."I haven't heard anything," Gagne said after the Rangers' 10-0 loss to the Kansas City Royals on Sunday. That's the latest information that's surfaced as the Rangers drew to within less than two days of the trade deadline. The Diamondbacks are showing serious interest, and the Rangers have been scouting Gonzalez, a 21-year-old outfielder who is hitting .270 with 15 home runs and 59 RBIs at Double-A Mobile. But a deal with any club does not appear imminent. The Angels are willing to offer first baseman Casey Kotchman and pitcher Joe Saunders but have not satisfied the Rangers on the third player in the deal. All anybody knows for certain is that Teixeira was in the Rangers' lineup Sunday, but nobody is really sure if it was for the last time. Manager Ron Washington assumed it was not. "I haven't heard anything in two days, so things must have cooled down," Washington said. More likely is that general manager Jon Daniels and his lieutenants have bunkered down in Arlington working the phones. The deadline is 3 p.m. CT on Tuesday, and Teixeira and Gagne appear to be the most talked about Rangers. Shortstop Michael Young said the players' focus has been on the field and the approaching deadlines is not weighing on them. "It's not," Young said. "This happens every year. Every team goes through this at the deadline, whether you're a contender and wondering what players you're going to get, if not, what players are going to leave. It hasn't been a point of conversation." Teixeira is the biggest name. He was the Rangers' first-round pick in the 2001 First-Year Player Draft and has been in the big leagues since the beginning of the 2003 season. "Obviously with the guys that have been here awhile, the idea of Tex being gone strikes a nerve," Young said. "We've been through a lot together. I've made a point of saying I want to go through my whole career playing with Tex and Hank [Blalock]. We've been together a long time and I know what they bring to the table." Teixeira has stopped commenting about the possibility of being traded and went about his normal routine Sunday, which included organizing Sunday chapel services. "I don't even think about it," Washington said. "If it happens, it happens. Of course it will change the lineup, but I don't worry about it." Bad homecoming: Travis Metcalf grew up dreaming about playing in Kauffman Stadium. Now he needs to get out of here. "Yes," Metcalf said. "Yes. I'm not a big fan so far. I like the stadium. It's fun to play here, but I haven't played well so far." That's true. Metcalf was 0-for-6 with three strikeouts and one error in the field going into Sunday's game. He was hoping to do better in front of family and friends. Metcalf is from Wamego, Kan., 90 minutes to the west, and played at the University of Kansas. "I don't know if it's a distraction," Metcalf said. "Over the last couple of weeks I've been feeling relaxed and comfortable at the plate, but when you have family and friends [present], you start trying too hard to get a hit. That never works out." Metcalf was 9-for-15 with five doubles in his previous four games before the start of the Kansas City series. Padilla watch: Vicente Padilla, on the disabled list with triceps inflammation, made it through Saturday's rehab start with Double-A Frisco without any problems. Padilla pitched two scoreless innings and threw 45 pitches. He'll start again Wednesday with the idea of throwing 60 pitches. He'll make that start and one more, then the Rangers will consider the possibility of bringing him to the big leagues. "We just need to make sure that he's not having and residual effects in that triceps," Washington said. Kinsler set to return: Ian Kinsler, after going 3-for-9 in his first two games in a rehab assignment at Triple-A Oklahoma, is a lock to be activated Tuesday against the Cleveland Indians. Kinsler played nine innings in both games with no problems in his left foot. He has one more game on Sunday before he meets the team in Cleveland. "He's a definite for Tuesday," Washington said. "When we sent him out, we knew he was in shape. We just wanted to get him some at-bats." Saturday's Minor Stars: Gold: Class A Clinton outfielder David Paisano was 3-for-5 with a run scored in a 5-4 loss to Lansing. Silver: Frisco pitcher Ken Chenard, pitching after Padilla, threw three scoreless innings of relief and struck out five in a 1-0 victory over Corpus Christi. Bronze: Class A Spokane catcher Billy Killian was 2-for-4 with a double and two runs scored in a 6-5 victory over Everett. Up next: The Rangers are off Monday before opening a three-game series with the Cleveland Indians on Tuesday at Jacobs Field. Right-hander Brandon McCarthy (4-7, 5.52 ERA) pitches against right-hander Fausto Carmona (13-4, 3.31 ERA).
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.