05/30/12 8:15 PM ET
Maddux lays out conservative plan for Oswalt
By T.R. Sullivan and Christian Corona / MLB.com
Hamilton feeling much better
ARLINGTON -- For the first time in several days, Rangers center fielder Josh Hamilton can say that he's feeling better.Head congestion and an upper respiratory condition has hampered Hamilton since the Rangers returned from Seattle last week. He missed Monday's series opener against the Mariners but returned Tuesday night, homering in the sixth inning driving in all the runs the Rangers scored in a 10-3 loss. "I guess all the medications they've been giving me are finally starting to work," Hamilton said. "I feel a lot better today. I'm starting to get a little un-cloudy. It's a good thing. After going a season-high 11 games without a home run, Hamilton has homered in three of the past four games in which he's played, including a two-run walk off home run in the 13th inning of Saturday's 8-7 win over the Blue Jays. Hamilton was visibly fatigued after that game but has nearly made a full recovery. He says he has benefited in some ways from being under the weather. "When you run to a spot and see stars when you get there, you don't need to be running around," Hamilton said. "You don't want to feel sick. At the same time, you're not trying to do too much. You're focusing more on the task at hand, whatever it may be. It has its good and bad, advantages and disadvantages. "I'm not 100 percent yet, so hopefully it'll stick around for a few days," Hamilton said. "[Being sick] lets me know I need to get out of my own way more often and not try to do too much and just focus on the task at hand.
Andrus gets 'mental' day off
ARLINGTON -- Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus, who committed an error in the Mariners' six-run eighth inning Tuesday night, got a day off on Wednesday.Alberto Gonzalez replaced Andrus at shortstop and batted ninth while Ian Kinsler took over for Andrus in the leadoff spot of the batting order as Michael Young moved up to second. Andrus said he would be available if needed to pinch-hit. "It's more of a mental day off," Andrus said. "You don't realize, when you play hard every day that, mentally, you're going to get a little tired. That's what I've felt the last few games. My body feels good, but mentally I'm starting to feel tired." Andrus set a team record by going 55 straight games without committing an error at shortstop earlier this year in a streak that stretched back to last season. But manager Ron Washington noticed Andrus make several defensive mistakes recently and decided to let him sit out the finale with the Mariners. "He needed a break," Washington said. "Some of the defensive lapses he had were usually because he was mentally fatigued. It was nothing to do with the physical; he's busting his butt. When you don't react to certain things, you just need a break." With the team taking a day off on Thursday before Friday's series opener against the Angels, Andrus gets a two-day break. "It's awesome," Andrus said. "Taking one day off is really good. Two is like a vacation." "It's the perfect time," Washington said. "He gets tonight. He gets tomorrow. He'll be ready to go when we get to Anaheim."
Rangers tell Feliz to focus on getting healthy
ARLINGTON -- The Rangers don't want Neftali Feliz worried about his spot on the pitching staff. That was the message they conveyed when Feliz met with manager Ron Washington and assistant general manager Thad Levine on Wednesday, one day after the Rangers announced the signing of pitcher Roy Oswalt."Just get healthy, that was the specifics of it," Washington said. "Focus on getting healthy right now. He can't even pick up a ball. Once he touches a ball, we'll see where he is. Right now, I don't think any of us knows what will happen." Feliz went on the disabled list on May 21 with a sprained right elbow. He has been shut down from throwing for four weeks and will be reevaluated at that point. Feliz is 3-1 with a 3.16 ERA in seven starts and one relief appearance. "I still see myself as a starter, but I'm not worried about it," Feliz said. "It was nice of Washington to talk to me, but I'm just focused on getting healthy." Right now Scott Feldman is the Rangers' fifth starter. Oswalt is not expected to join the rotation until late June. "We'll just see what happens," general manager Jon Daniels said. "Neftali is still 2-3 weeks away from seeing the doctor and getting a potential green light to throw. Roy is 2-3 weeks away from joining the big league staff. We're going to roll with what we have now."
Brad Hawpe has been placed on the disabled list at Double-A Frisco with left elbow fatigue. He has been trying to come back from Tommy John elbow reconstruction surgery that took place in August.
The Rangers used closer Joe Nathan in the ninth on Tuesday night even though they were losing, 10-3. Washington said Nathan was willing to pitch so they could give Koji Uehara and Yoshinori Tateyama needed rest. Said Washington, "That's being a great teammate, that's what that is." Alexi Ogando gave up three runs in the eighth inning on Tuesday night but said his right hand was fine. He was hit in the hand by a line drive on Sunday but said that was not a problem for him anymore. Said Washington, "He's fine physically. He'll get it together." Yu Darvish, who starts on Saturday against the Angels, on the back stiffness and intestinal problems he had on Sunday against the Blue Jays: "Honestly it's not that bad and it's getting better. Hopefully it will get better in the next two days." Double-A Frisco outfielder Val Majewski was promoted to Triple-A Round Rock Wednesday while outfielder Ryan Strausborger was activated off the disabled list, replacing Majewski on the Frisco roster.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. Christian Corona is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.