Here's a little Thursday morning "Happiness" from the Foreign Exchange:
● T.R. Sullivan's game story talks about Josh Hamilton and Ian Kinsler coming up as heroes late in last night's game with the tying and go-ahead solo home runs after Brandon McCarthy was lifted from the game, and discusses C.J. Wilson's control problems that cropped up as a result of a blister on the middle finger of his left hand.
Wilson says that he will make his next start next Monday, and, assuming that the Rangers wrap up the division title by then (which appears quite likely), he'll apparently pitch only a few innings that night, after which I would assume he'd give way to Scott Feldman or Alexi Ogando. With that said, however, this is still something that bears some amount of monitoring.
● Ian Kinsler is the first American League second baseman in history to record 30 homers, 30 doubles, 100 runs, and 80 walks in a single season. Those are some off-puttingly arbitrary benchmarks to set, but the main takeaway is that he's a damn good sec-oh, wait, he pops out too much and has cruddy body language. Never mind.
● Mark Lowe is headed back to Texas this morning to be checked out by team physician Dr. Keith Meister after injuring his hamstring during warm-ups last night, and, as I speculated last night, this will probably open up a spot for one of Scott Feldman, Darren O'Day, or Yoshinori Tateyama to join the ALDS roster.
● T.R. Sullivan suggests that the Rangers are taking a look at Michael Kirkman as a possible eighth playoff reliever. I can't see a good reason to carry eight relief pitchers in the post-season, but maybe somebody else can talk me into it (note: they won't).
● Sullivan talks about Michael Young's entrance into the 200-hit club (again). Richard Durrett writes that Adrian Beltre is the first Ranger to homer eight times in nine games since Rafael Palmeiro in 1999. Josh Hamilton likes being aggressive at the plate. Jeff Wilson's notes discuss Andres Blanco's bad back and the easing-in of Nelson Cruz. Endy Chavez is having a "very special" season. And in a somewhat startling revelation, Gerry Fraley says that Colby Lewis has been dealing with hip pain since the middle of last season.