To ring in the month of December, here's a classic instrumental jam from "Black On Both Sides" by the title of "May-December":
● Jeff Wilson writes about Mitch Moreland undergoing surgery to remove a small (pisiform) bone at the base of his right wrist on Wednesday, which was apparently the root cause of the wrist tendinitis that plagued him during the second half of the 2011 season. His recovery time is expected to be in the 8-12 week range, which could conceivably force him to miss the first few games of spring training as he tries to play late-February/early-March catch-up, but the Rangers apparently believe that he'll be ready for the club's first spring training game on March 4th.
Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi write that Moreland's status isn't expected to materially affect the Rangers' level of interest in Prince Fielder or Albert Pujols, and further state that while the Rangers do have interest in Fielder, he's not high on their priority list, as they're more concerned right now with upgrading the bullpen and starting rotation.
● Richard Durrett peeks at the idea of Texas signing Roy Oswalt. I'm not sure how motivated the Rangers are going to be to hotly pursue a guy who isn't all that far removed from talking like a man resigned to retiring in the middle of the season, and I don't know that he would constitute enough of an upgrade in his present form to justify the kind of contract that he'll probably be seeking ... but to reiterate the point I made last night/this morning, it's possible that Texas could relegate Ogando back to the bullpen at the outset of the season to make way for an incoming starter, and then adjust his role on the fly if injuries or attrition should result in one of the starting five going down for the count.
If Oswalt can be had for a reasonable price, and if Ogando is flexible and mentally prepared enough to jump back into the rotation and pitch effectively at a moment's notice, that could be an interesting way of bolstering both the rotation and the bullpen while still offering some protection.
● Michael Young and C.J. Wilson have been voted the Rangers' 2011 Player and Pitcher of the Year, respectively.
● Jesse Sanchez and Tom Singer write about the Hall of Fame candidacies of Juan Gonzalez and Rafael Palmeiro, both of whom are facing steep uphill climbs in their respective bids to win election to Cooperstown. It seems fairly safe to say that the cloud of PED suspicion -- and, in Gonzalez's case, a lack of HOF-befitting numbers -- is going to preclude any serious support on this front, and that the only real chance they have is if the BBWAA electorate undergoes a serious mindset adjustment over the next couple of years with respect to their position on PED use inside the game.