ARLINGTON -- The Rangers have almost put outfielder David Murphy on the mound twice this season.Murphy was warming up inside late during a game against the Yankees in New York last month, a 12-4 loss, and he was told to be ready during the June 25 game against the Mets in Arlington, a 14-5 loss. Both times the Rangers decided not to use him. "It would have been fun," said Murphy, who pitched in high school and almost did so with Baylor. "There was a time when everybody thought my future was on the mound." Twins manager Ron Gardenhire had to use All-Star first baseman Michael Cuddyer on the mound in Monday's 20-6 loss. Rangers manager Ron Washington cringes at the thought of doing the same but admitted he might have to if he finds himself in the same situation as Gardenhire. Murphy is one option. Mitch Moreland is another.
Moreland pitched at Mississippi State and in Instructional League for the Rangers before they decided to keep him as a position player, but Washington is worried about putting him on the mound."He'll try to show you he can throw 97, 98 and hurt himself," Washington said.
Holland getting message out about texting and driving
ARLINGTON -- Derek Holland admits that he is as guilty as anybody. That's why he has joined the Arlington Fire and Police Departments in spreading the "Don't Text and Drive" message."I just want to get the message out about how serious it is," Holland said on Tuesday. "You see it day after day -- people not paying attention because they're texting." Holland has done a public service announcement with Arlington Police Department chief Theron Bowman on the dangers of driving while texting. Fans can visit texasrangers.com/text and pledge not to text and drive. "On a daily basis, the Arlington Police Department works accidents that could have prevented, and the majority are caused by distracted drivers," Bowman said. "It's critical to our community's safety," said Arlington fire chief Don Crowson. "The consequences of drivers texting and driving are as serious as drinking and driving. Bringing the issue to the forefront is the key." All fans who pledge to not text and drive will be automatically entered into a drawing to win a baseball autographed by Holland that will be awarded at the end of September. Fans can also download a printable "Keep Your Thumbs on the Wheel" tag, suitable for hanging on a rearview mirror. "I was guilty of not paying attention," Holland said. "I had a fender-bender when I was called up from Oklahoma City last year. I bumped into somebody, and then somebody hit me. We were going through a construction zone. Fortunately, nobody got hurt."
Official scorer taken to hospital
ARLINGTON -- Dan Schimek, a former longtime traveling secretary for the Rangers who was the official scorer on Tuesday night, was stricken in the press box during the fifth inning and taken to a local hospital.
Schimek, who was treated in the press box by the park's emergency personnel, is in stable condition and will be held overnight for observation.
He worked for the Rangers in 1979 to 1997 and is one of three official scorers used on a rotating basis at the Ballpark.
Martin gets extra work in Arlington
ARLINGTON -- Triple-A Round Rock outfielder Leonys Martin made an appearance in Arlington on Tuesday, as the Rangers wanted to give him a chance to work with outfield and baserunning coach Gary Pettis."Messing with Gary Pettis, you've got to pick up something," manager Ron Washington said. "We're just trying to get him accustomed to trying to be self-sufficient with things out there in the basepaths." With Round Rock hosting Memphis until Friday, general manager Jon Daniels brought Martin to Arlington for a crash course with Pettis. The two will work on outfield play on Wednesday before Martin returns to Round Rock.
Martin, who signed with the Rangers on May 4 as an amateur free agent out of Cuba, is hitting .334 in the Minor Leagues."I have a lot of things to work on, and that's what I'm willing to do," Martin said. "I want to get the most that I can from the coaches, and I am. I'm ready to get as much as I can to help my experience." Washington insisted that the move was not made with the intention of getting Martin ready to contribute in the Majors this season. "This is just to help his development," he said. "It has nothing to do with September. Nothing to do with August, either. He just needs to play baseball. He needs to improve on every aspect of the game. He needs to play."
Davis putting too much pressure on himself
ARLINGTON -- The Rangers recorded 27 hits in their 20-6 victory over the Twins on Monday. Third baseman Chris Davis didn't have any, going 0-for-6 with two strikeouts.
This from a hitter who was hitting .368 with an .824 slugging percentage at Triple-A Round Rock, and three of the six pitchers who were on the mound for Minnesota spent significant amount of time at Triple-A this season."I'm pressing," Davis said. "Sometimes when you want something so bad, you try too hard. For some reason, when I get up here, I put too much pressure on myself and try to do too much." Entering Tuesday's game, Davis was hitting .234 with three home runs and five RBIs with a .406 slugging percentage in 24 games with the Rangers.
Kinsler misses second cycle
ARLINGTON -- Ian Kinsler went 4-for-6 with a walk in seven plate appearances against the Twins on Monday. He hit a home run, a double and a single in his first four plate appearances, giving him three shots to add a triple. If he had, it would have been the second time in his career that he hit for the cycle."I didn't realize until my sixth at-bat," Kinsler said. "Then I realized I was a triple away. It would have been cool." In his final three plate appearances, Kinsler singled, flied out and then walked on four pitches in the eighth inning against Michael Cuddyer. The Rangers did not want to run up the score or show up the Twins, but Kinsler said that he would have gone hard after the triple had he hit one in the gap. "It would have been tough to take off for third," he said. "But if I had the opportunity, I would not have stopped at second. If it's a blowout, that might be showing up the other team more stopping at second than taking third."
Rangers dodge the pregame heat
ARLINGTON -- Manager Ron Washington noticed one difference between the Rangers' 4-0 loss to the Blue Jays on Sunday and their 20-6 win over the Twins on Monday. The Rangers took batting practice outside on Sunday in the intense heat and managed just four singles against Toronto starter Brett Cecil. On Monday they did their work in the indoor cages."I could see they were sluggish against Cecil," Washington said. "They worked outside that day, and it was hot. I'm not going to subject them to that." When Sunday's game started, the temperature was 105 degrees. On Monday it dipped, to 102. "It has been hot since I started managing in Texas, but not 100 degrees every day like this," Washington said.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. Louie Horvath is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.