Skin linked to this newly released Erykah Badu/Flying Lotus collaboration last night on Twitter, and if you like the scene that either of those artists is throwing down these days, you'll probably like this morning's track:
● Despite the crummy 1-3 showing in New York, the Rangers survived their 10-game BOS/DET/NYY gauntlet with an overall 5-5 record, and neither the Angels nor the Athletics are making any divisional headway, so the big question at this point is less 'will Texas win the division?' and more 'will Texas claim the No. 1 seed?' T.R. Sullivan writes about yesterday's game, where the Rangers cranked out an early lead, watched it slip away, and then battled back to reclaim the late-game lead, with the bullpen locking things down past the seventh inning.
● Derek Holland feels confident about his outing (5.2 IP, 5 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 3 K, 0 BB, 1 HR), even though the game began spinning out of control in the sixth inning with three singles, a homer, and a two-base error committed by Mike Olt in his first career outfield start. Both Craig Gentry and Mike Olt netted starts yesterday with Nelson Cruz and Ian Kinsler out of the lineup, and they acquitted themselves reasonably well at the plate. Michael Kirkman showed poise on the bump yesterday.
● Barry Horn demonstrates himself as being the only DFW writer with enough courage to bring up the notion of trading Michael Young for Alfonso Soriano, and he gets some reinforcement from the echo chamber. That doesn't sound like a very good or a very plausible idea, given that you'd be increasing the Rangers' net contractual obligations through 2014 by $20-plus million -- assuming a one-for-one swap with no cash changing hands -- and taking on an old player who isn't necessarily any better than your internal options. But, you know, it's not going to happen anyway.
● Ron Washington says he doesn't have a problem with Ian Kinsler's occasional umpire-directed tantrums, and accuses Vic Carapazza of having a short fuse when he ejected Kinsler late in Wednesday night's game. Kinsler sat yesterday because Washington felt that Kinsler looked a little sluggish and his bat "looked a little heavy."
● Drew Davison writes that the Rangers are bracing for three games on the hard Rogers Centre turf, with a possible game at DH for Elvis Andrus being up in the air. Yu Darvish says he feels strong mentally and physically, although the question of how well that will translate into good process/results will be further answered tonight.